Copy Depot poised to modernize
November 6, 2009
Pam and Allen Woll did not sell out and they weren’t bought out. It’s important to them that the community understands that. The owners of the Copy Depot at Snow Creek Plaza are opening Park City’s first corporate print and copy shop this month, but they say it’s still locally owned and family run.
An AlphaGraphics sign will appear soon and the interior is already beginning to look like the other 14 locations in Utah.
Franchisees independently own AlphaGraphics centers. The people at 1300 Snow Creek will stay the same. The reason for the decision, Allen Woll explained, was strategic.
"Copy Depot is kind of 1990s," he said.
New technology has made small copy shops obsolete. Declining revenue has made it hard for them to keep up with new developments in digital printers. Many of the process for creating signs, fliers, new business cards, company shirts and promotional materials have changed. Newsletters are now paperless and marketing is largely driven through email and other electronic blasts, he said.
Many businesses have been watching recent trends in the economy, consumer habits, marketing strategies and technological developments and realizing they must adapt or perish.
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Woll realized he needed to make changes at Copy Depot. He stopped carrying office supplies because there just wasn’t a demand. The couple began assessing the future of Pam’s business Positive Incentives that created promotional materials.
Then one day last March an AlphaGraphics representative walked in and wanted to talk about what the corporation could offer to franchise participants.
"Our first response was, ‘I don’t think so.’ But we kept giving it more thought. The business world will be different coming out of recession. We aren’t sure how but are sure it will be. So much is digitally driven," he said.
One thing they know for sure is that the industry has shifted to become focused on serving "business to business" communication.
That’s the emphasis of AlphaGraphics, he said.
"We get training, support and national branding," Woll explained. "We’re excited; we want to be a marketing communications company instead of a small print shop," he said.
The corporation is committed to being cutting edge, Woll added.
"They’re always looking to the future: what’s coming, what’s next, what’s the next technology?" he said. "We want to be positioned; we’ve hung in for 23 months of this recession."
Copy Depot and Positive Incentives have both been rolled into AlphaGraphics that will do everything the two former businesses did, plus a lot more, he explained.
He hired an outside sales representative and tore out the interior walls to become a "concept shop" like the other centers.
"We’re getting software to handle email blasts, and do postcard mailings," he said.
The center will still do screen printing and offset printing, but will have new machines to do everything digitally, including embroidery and signage.
Now instead of worrying about how his businesses will adjust for the 21st Century, Woll said he plans on helping others make the leap.
"We’re carving out a niche," he added.