As I write this in the first month of 2006, I am reminded from long-ago mythology lessons that January is named for Janus, the two-headed Roman god who looked both backward and forward.
And despite the image of a scraggly bearded "thing with two heads," I, too, am looking backward and forward. The Powder Coating Institute celebrates its 25th anniversary in 2006, and has had me reflecting on how far the organization has come in that time, focused on doing the best for its members by promoting powder coating technology, and developing publications, workshops, trade shows, marketing programs, and other projects and services to educate powder coating users.
At the same time, PCI continues to evolve as the industry changes, responding to both issues that face the industry as well as technological advancements that hold promise for its expansion.
Many PCI members indicated a desire for a "back to basics" emphasis on the benefits of powder coating, as exemplified by the Five E's from earlier PCI promotional efforts - economical, environmentally friendly, ease of application, excellence of finish, and energy efficient. PCI is incorporating this emphasis in its marketing efforts.
At the same time we're looking back, we're also looking forward. With major appliances diversifying their color schemes away from the familiar tones and to more customized choices, PCI is promoting quick time color change for powder coating application.
With the installation of two new vertical powder coating lines for aluminum extrusions in the United States last year, PCI has made a concerted effort to target architects and others in the building and construction industry, educating them on the benefits and the versatility of powder coatings. After proven long-term success in Europe, powder coating in the architectural market holds the greatest potential for industry growth in North America, once enough decision makers understand powder coating's potential and have the information and resources to choose powder coating for their latest projects.
PCI is also doing more to promote the powder coating of large parts, as more facilities can accommodate and successfully coat and cure large frames for the agricultural and construction industry. And while the development of powder coating materials and application processes move to uses on more wood, plastic, and other heat sensitive parts and components, PCI continues to promote these emerging applications.
All of PCI's marketing efforts, through print advertisements, interactive banner headlines on publication web sites, and consumer publications through newspaper clipsheet articles and radio pickups, send audiences to the PCI web site, located at www.powdercoating.org. There, Web surfers can find a wealth of information about PCI programs, events, publications and services; articles and photos for the media; a special section aimed at architects; and the list of PCI Company Members, with hot links to their own Web sites from the member's listing. PCI's Web site generates more than 400,000 hits from 20,000 to 25,000 visitors each month. Expanded product and/or service listings for PCI members provide greater exposure about their company's offerings and is one of the many benefits of membership in PCI. More information on membership and its benefits can also be found on the site.
Finally, I encourage all PCI company member representatives to look ahead to the 25th Anniversary celebration of PCI, which will take place May 22-24, 2006, at La Quinta Resort in La Quinta, Calif. The 2006 PCI Annual Meeting Silver Jubilee will be a great opportunity to look back on PCI's 25 years and look ahead to even greater prosperity for the association and the powder coating industry. Members can contact PCI for more information on this landmark event.