Five Questions with
Tom D’Agostino Jr.,
CEO Smart Source LLC
Smart Source's CEO, Tom D'Agostino Jr. discusses the evolution of the print industry and the potential for added value and savings.
How is the print industry changing?
With the ongoing shift to digital marketing channels, the print industry is shrinking each year. In simplest terms, a shrinking industry is an opportunity for savings. An empty print press sells for considerably less than a full one. We are an outsourcing company that specializes in print buying– which means we have access to open capacity and combined purchasing power. This is just one of our areas of expertise.
How are you running a successful business built on a shrinking industry?
We are not challenged with large brick and mortar overhead or trying to fill equipment. We are not limited by geographic location. We have thousands of suppliers in network and access to open capacity, which means we can consistently offer highest quality, best price.
For print services, our customers outsource the entire buying process to us including vendor payment, invoice reconciliation, supplier rating, and quality control and compliance management.
We have valuable proprietary technology, which allows us to advance branded communications, whether it is through critical communications or promotional materials. Our sourcing technology is uniquely different from that of our competitors – it enables us to grow with customers that are outsourcing a shrinking spend category.
What is the most common misconception a CEO or a CFO has about his/her company’s marketing spend?
Successful C level executives are interested in overall value through efficiency that leads to savings and earnings. For most businesses, printing is a non-core function and they are not expected to be experts in that field. We are. Print buying is our core function. Right now, for every dollar spent on print much more is wasted on mismanaged process and overhead. Imagine if you are a company that spends a million plus dollars each year on printing, that is a savings of hundreds of thousands of dollars that can be put back into a marketing budget or taken right to the bottom line.
Our sourcing technology gives immediate access to costs from the best-qualified printers (we rank them), and offers wholesale pricing. Our open book pricing combined with our validated process management enables our customers to have control while outsourcing a non-core function.
Where have you seen the most success for your clients?
Our BPO model is top of the list. When we can implement our BPO model, the value to our client is immediate. Smart Source Technology plus Smart Source onsite management guarantees accelerated growth for your company.
If you weren’t in the print buying business, what would be doing?
It's hard to imagine doing anything different because I grew up in this business. Our everyday technology (smart phones, internet, etc.) has forever changed the print and communications industries. It is that change that excites me about this industry. I am driven by the demand to deliver technology and outsourcing solutions that help our customers manage and streamline the need for paper-based branded communications.