Minuteman Press Franchise Owners Rally to Help Stop the Spread of Coronavirus
At Minuteman Press in Levittown, owner Michael Levy may never have imagined that his 3D Printing machine would be put to use to help in the fight against our current, but temporary enemy, COVID-19, but that’s exactly how he is choosing to use it today. He has always been generous in spirit and in the value that he offers for superior design and printing to his local business and non-profit organizations, but when he realized he could help produce face shields for healthcare providers, he did not hesitate, nor look for compensation.
“I got a text from my sister on March 23rd with an article about a couple in Syracuse printing a face-shield to help protect providers. I looked into it immediately, contacted the journalist and explained that my Minuteman Press center has 3D printing technology and we wish to help. I obtained the files I needed to print most of all the needed parts, converted the files for our 3D technology, did a test run and it worked! I shared a photo of the shield we printed on Facebook and immediately, I got offers for materials to assemble them fully and make them comfortable. It is without question that we would do all we can at Minuteman Press to help both our health care and our communications industries right now.”
“I will sleep well tonight, for the first time in a while. I worry about business doing well and that is what drives me. Since that has not changed, I made sure to put that feeling to work. I had a great day today. I printed and assembled 15 face shields and delivered them to the hospital and to doctors who asked for them. Then, I got orders for 5,000 masks (8 separate orders). THEN, I began working on selling 10,000 bottles of hand sanitizer to help as much as I possibly can until things return to normal.” – Michael Levy, Owner, Minuteman Press Levittown
Michael is used to moving quickly as the printing industry is essential to critical infrastructure as well as time-sensitive industries such as health care and mailing services, so during this immediate crisis, he rapidly gathered his employees to assemble the face shields. His team gathered donated elastic bands and since Monday, the day after he discovered he could help, they have been at work producing tools for health care providers and others. They do this even as they remain at the sides of all of their clients at a moment’s notice.
Michael says, “We understand the fight and are armed with print technology to help both our client base and now, our heroes in medicine as well. I told every one of my employees that as a printing business we are essential in a special way right now and all of us will work tirelessly to serve that role.”
He continues, “Printing businesses are essential. We are providers to local businesses, municipalities, healthcare, shipping and mailing and to accurate fast communications so necessary today.”
While the face shields Michael and his staff are printing and assembling are not designed by medical teams, they are being requested by medical professionals and requests are mounting as quickly as he fulfills them. “I am getting calls from anesthesiologists, OB/GYNs, dental hygienists and other providers. All are saying they want them and do not have them readily available, so we are going to print them all day to accommodate this need. It isn’t a fast process so we have limits because 3D print technology is still growing, but we have it and we will not stop doing our part while the need is there. I went out and ordered, plastic sheets for the shield as well as tape and foam cushion to make wearing them feel softer. We are assembling them and printing more right now.”
Printing is an essential business and has always been, but never has it been more apparent during this temporary but delicate time for all people. It is Michael’s intention to use the full power of his printing business in a valiant effort to help prevent the spread of Coronavirus. He is preparing to use his marketing services center to print ventilation parts as the result of another request for help. “Someone contacted me yesterday and is sending me the file for ventilation parts and I told him I would test run it, so as soon as we produce the requested face shields, we are moving on to focus on those ventilation parts.” He does all of this even as his own business buckles to adapt to the limits on small business by government regulations during the pandemic.
Marketing may be different but businesses needs to keep customers informed, provide critical communications, and keep their brands “out there” during this challenging time.
The current COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic places Michael Levy and his team in the “same boat” as his clients by finding ways to ride out the dip in sales while remaining dedicated to the health of their businesses, continually finding new ways to keep each day alive with new strategies.
“My business, like most businesses, went down and I am compassionate towards my clients who are struggling to pay for things. I understand them. I am the President of the East Meadow Chamber of Commerce and we are all coming together to help each other. It is a hard time, but it is a temporary time. I do not want to send normal marketing emails and requests, but I do hope to retain all of my employees, stay strong and come out of this returning to building business with my clients.”
To help the clients adapt to safety guidelines like “social distance rules” which include new workspaces like home offices, Michael has some suggestions and the capability of designing, printing and delivering them.
Here are three suggestions to maintain a professional appearance during times working from home is the best way to keep your brand moving forward:
- Branded backdrops for video conferencing: We can design and print sharp-looking branded backdrops with your company information looking clear and vibrant. We are able to do this on vinyl or, if it helps fit your budget, we can print them on paper without sacrificing the professional look you will have while conducting business from your home. It’s a great way to make an impression that will be remembered when things return to normal and business is in full-swing on premises again.
- Branded apparel is always helpful to provide a professional look: We normally produce great numbers of high-quality branded polo shirts, t-shirts and more. We can do this at quantities and pricing that makes sense for your needs at any given time. Always wear your brand!
- Branded mugs since people see more than just you on screen: We can print mugs with our dye sublimation machines and customize them to add to your complete professional visual presentation to use now, at your home office. Then, you can take it back to your brick and mortar locations when progressing back to the normal working days we all anticipate are coming. We are with you all the way with ideas that make this time easier and that includes printing just a few or even one branded mug so you can keep your business mindset and appearance consistent.
Here are some other actions Minuteman Press is taking to help during the COVID-19 Pandemic in addition to the modest production of 3D printed face shields and other items:
Informational Signage: “I sent an email to our Chamber of Commerce and my customers and offered all of our members’ free printed 12 x 18 signs that say, “WE ARE OPEN.” I did this to help during what is a temporary time of urgency so people in our community are not additionally stressed out. We printed those signs and it was a pleasure to contribute them to those who put them to work during modified operational procedures and hours,” Michael explains.
Healthcare Workers’ Uniforms: We do a great deal of screen printing and embrodiery for many industries who need branded apparel. One of our clients provides at-home healthcare. They are a franchise and we take care of this for 90 of their locations. They prefer branded polo shirts and distribute those to their health care professionals to wear when they go into homes to take care of people.
Hand Sanitizer and Hand Sanitizer Labels: “Two weeks ago, someone gave me a mini-hand sanitizer and there was only talk about perhaps not shaking hands while networking then, but I remembered. A day later, I did an email blast explaining we could print brands onto hand sanitizer and immediately got a great deal of orders, then they were sold out. Just now, vendors have replenished and I can offer this item if you reach out to us. Putting your brand on hand sanitizer may be an easy way to contribute to health and safety while making sure your business is remembered, especially when things return to normal.”
The COVID-19 pandemic is grueling to endure for all of us and that includes local business. The good news is that it is temporary and as communities come together and share resources, remember that print is essential to the effort and though 3D Printing technology is in an early stage of use, Minuteman Press in Levittown is putting it to work in the favor of progressing towards the refreshing day we can say, “business as usual”.
As each of us does our part, remembering to support local businesses now as you can, whether it be ordering take out or consulting with your local Minuteman Press to find ways to keep your brand presence healthy and strong. One day soon, the chance to take it from strong to stronger will resume and we will get there together.
The preceding press release was provided by a company unaffiliated with Wide-Format Impressions. The views expressed within do not directly reflect the thoughts or opinions of the staff of Wide-Format Impressions