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CABARRUS NEWS – Here’s the Pitch



When the Gastonia business- to-business provider of customized printed communications materials went to bat in winning hometown favorite ball team Charlotte Knights’ business, they hit it out of the park.

The company, whose roots extend back 90 years in Gastonia, wanted to share a gift with their new client after gaining the new client earlier this spring.

Karen Kaufman, 48, executive vice-president over operations and sales at ImageMark shared the background behind a fun promotion the company executed in support of the Knights exciting opening day in their brand new uptown stadium earlier this spring.

“We’re thrilled to support the Knights and help them enhance their fan experience,” said Kaufman. “We wanted to do something special for them as a gift and also demonstrate our creative process and quick turnaround capabilities. One of our team members wondered out loud about how great it might be if we could capture an image of the Knights first pitch in their new stadium on opening day, send it digitally back to our facility and print commemorative flyers and have them back to the stadium for fans leaving at the end of the game.”

What began as an impromptu discussion around the water cooler turned into a lesson in planning and execution as ImageMark was able to print and deliver 12,000 limited edition and numbered flyers. The flyers were created using three unique technologies, incorporated designs preapproved by the Knights. The photograph was taken of the first pitch, sent via the web to Gastonia where they were edited, printed and brought more than 25 miles to the ballpark where they were made available to fans by the end of the sixth inning.

“There was a great deal of advance planning, practice runs and contingencies allowed for,” Kaufman said. “At the end of the day we had an entire team of folks that made it happen, we are incredibly proud of our accomplishments and very pleased to be part of such a special event.”

State-of-the-art technology

Driving past ImageMark’s Gastonia headquarters and their 130,000 square ft. distribution facility, it might be hard to image the sophisticated technology in operation behind the building’s modest exterior.

Yet it’s precisely their state-of-the-art digital printing coupled with an innovative design team and extraordinary customer service that place this provider of customized printed communications materials in high standing with its customers.

The business to business organization uses an in-house design team and a proprietary web-to-print system called ResourceOne to produce all manner of specialized marketing and collateral material for their clients. ImageMark is so well regarded by its business partners; they were recently selected by Kodak to serve as a digital demonstration center for their specialized digital presses – the only one of its kind in the country. The special presses have enhanced capabilities including the ability to print sheets up to 36 inches long.

“We are excited about the opening of our Kodak satellite digital production demo center,” said Walter Payne, ImageMark president. “The solutions Kodak’s technology brings to the market supports ImageMark’s digital production, allowing us to provide the most valuable service for our clients.”

Employing 65

Payne purchased the former printing company whose 16 years ago, renamed it to better represent the expanded service lines and began growing sales beyond the region. ImageMark began with eight employees and today employs 65.

ImageMark’s national client base includes fast casual franchise Salsarita’s, automotive aftermarket manufacturer, WIX as well as those in the healthcare and educational arenas.

The Knights business was a the culmination of a competitive bidding process and a solid team effort.

For the thousands of Knights fans leaving the opening night game collector’s item in hand they seemed mighty pleased that ImageMark got the job.