Direction ADV - Creativity in Action
Branding Like Nowhere Else
Don't look elsewhere; here is your one-stop for branding

Branding is of great importance for companies and business houses in today's highly competitive markets. Branding can be defined linguistically as “the act of giving a company a particular design or symbol in order to advertise its products and services.” Artistically speaking, branding has evolved to go beyond the aesthetic elements of a mere logo or visual identity to brand recognition, standing out from the crowd and having brand loyal customers. Branding requires creativity in the sense of a creative design of the visual identity or company's logo as well as the brand recognition in today's markets to website development and e-marketing strategies.

Branding is what your business needs to break through the clutter and grab your ideal customer's attention. It's what transforms first-time buyers into lifetime customers and turns an indifferent audience into brand evangelists.

What are the elements of branding?

These are the elements of branding that you'll need to create in order to cultivate how your business is perceived by customers:

  • Mission statement and brand values

    Your mission statement and brand values are the foundation for your branding. Think of your mission as the brains of the operation—a short and succinct statement that defines the present state and purpose of your organization. Meanwhile, your company's vision is its heart, providing an inspirational and motivational snapshot of what you seek to achieve in the long term.

  • Brand guidelines

    With the mission and vision statement set as the pillars of your organization, your branding strategy comes to encompass everything in between. This will take the form of brand guidelines which are comprised into a tangible document that will reflect and support your business goals, differentiate you from competitors, resonate with customers, provide a template for decision-making and precipitate ideas for future marketing campaigns. It will also include all the stylistic elements of your branding, including your color palette, fonts, and an outline of your brand voice.

  • Logo

    Your logo is the face of your company and designing your logo is arguably the single most important branding you'll do for your business. During the design process, think about who you are as a brand and how you want to be perceived by your customers. Use that to drive your design strategy.

  • Website

    Designing your website is also a key branding step. Your website is your brand's digital real estate and when your customers visit, it should be visually engaging, easy to use, and most important of all a reflection of who you are as a brand. Similar to your logo, refer to your brand guide to choose your web design elements (like layout and fonts).

  • Additional assets

    There's no one-size-fits-all approach to branding. Depending on your business and industry, you might need additional assets like business cards, product packaging or event flyers. Assess your business and your unique needs, and then develop additional branding assets accordingly.

A better brand means better marketing

As a general rule, products have limited life cycles, but brands—if managed well—last forever. And once you've nailed down exactly who you are as a brand, it becomes much easier to market it.

Your brand guidelines, coupled with ongoing market research and analysis, should give you a tactical advantage in determining the best way to market your products. By continually consulting your brand guide, you should be able to focus your efforts on the tactics that really matter.

At the end of the day, marketing is the process that brings you the leads and sales, but branding is the foundation upon which you build your reputation and customer loyalty.

Empower your business with branding

The one thing you'll want to remember is that branding is an action. So while it might seem daunting at first—considering all of the planning, assets and personnel that go into cultivating an unforgettable brand—it is also empowering. Rather than letting others tell your story, you are speaking up with branding.

If you ever feel lost in the process, remember that support is always at hand. Once you have established your branding vision, get in touch with a professional designer help to bring your branding to life.

Empower your business with branding

The one thing you'll want to remember is that branding is an action. So while it might seem daunting at first—considering all of the planning, assets and personnel that go into cultivating an unforgettable brand—it is also empowering. Rather than letting others tell your story, you are speaking up with branding.

If you ever feel lost in the process, remember that support is always at hand. Once you have established your branding vision, get in touch with a professional designer help to bring your branding to life.

Branding generates new customers

A good brand will have no trouble drumming up referral business. Strong branding generally means there is a positive impression of the company amongst consumers, and they are likely to do business with you because of the familiarity and assumed dependability of using a name they can trust. Once a brand has been well-established, word of mouth will be the company's best and most effective advertising technique.

Improves employee pride and satisfaction

When an employee works for a strongly branded company and truly stands behind the brand, they will be more satisfied with their job and have a higher degree of pride in the work that they do. Working for a brand that is reputable and held in high regard amongst the public makes working for that company more enjoyable and fulfilling.

Altogether, the process of branding with #creativity_in_action is an integrated process that leads to empowering and sustaining your business globally.

Annual Reports All at Your Hands
Inclusive, feasible, in-depth

To run a global business and follow up the growth of your business annual reports are a key. Annual reports describe operations and financial conditions of and help you make forecasts about the future of your business. Annual reports are public documents that are of benefit to shareholders, individual investors, money managers, company employees, financial institutions, and students. Preparing your annual reports with #creativity_in_action is inclusive, feasible, and in-depth process that leads to empowering your business globally.

What Does an Annual Report Contain?

Annual reports provide a significant amount of information for its readers who will be able to get a good overview of the company's overall performance in the preceding year. It is important to note that many annual reports are not traditional reports with large amounts of text; many companies often incorporate a lot of graphics and images, resulting in a visually appealing document.

Who Uses Annual Reports?

Annual reports are often publicly available and cater to a large external audience, including shareholders, potential investors, employees, and customers. The general community can also be an audience, as some companies or non-profit organizations will likely go through another company's annual report to better understand the latter's values to see if a partnership or other collaborative efforts are feasible.

While they are primarily used to convey financial and performance-related information, the annual report is also used as an advertising tool to highlight some of the company's key initiatives or goals that were recently achieved.

  • Shareholders and Potential Investors

    Shareholders and potential investors use annual reports to get a better understanding of the current position of the company in order to make investing decisions. The annual report helps potential investors decide whether or not to purchase stock. It also gives insight into the future plans of the company, along with its goals and objectives.

  • Employees

    Employees often use the annual report to understand some of a company's different focus areas. Many employees are also shareholders of a company due, in part, to stock option benefits and other schemes, which provide employees with incentives in being shareholders.

  • Customers

    Customers of a company use annual reports to get an overview of different companies and help them decide on which one to build a relationship with. Customers are interested in working with high-quality suppliers of products or services, and an annual report enables companies to emphasize its core values and objectives.
    They also make good use of the financial information contained in the annual report, which gives them a good idea of the financial position of the company.

How to Efficiently Read an Annual Report

A company's annual report is the single most important way for potential investors to understand the financial state of a company. A company annual report is also a marketing tool designed to attract investors, and a company will attempt to present themselves in the best light possible without violating any Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) regulations.

Unfortunately, while many investors read annual reports, they fail to read them effectively. In other words, while annual reports do not deceive or reflect false information about the business, investors should always read them with a sense of skepticism. Learn how to read between the lines and decipher the actual condition of the company.

Components of an Annual Report

Investors should always read the 10-K filing if they're interested in investing in a public company. The report begins with a detailed description of the business, followed by risk factors, a summary of any legal issues, and the numbers.

Catalogues: Uniqueness at Glance

Another important aspect to empower your business and have your brand and products recognized globally is to have your product catalogues with a creative design. Catalogues creative design is a graphic design that presents your products and services to your potential clients and customer. That is so because catalogues creative design prepares a company presentation for print and online edition. In all, catalogues with #creativity_in_action are designed by unique, creative standards.

A product catalog is a type of marketing collateral that lists essential product details that help buyers make a purchase decision. These details include product features, descriptions, dimensions, price, weight, availability, color, customer reviews, and more.

The best example of a product catalog is the Amazon marketplace, where you can get a host of information in a single click. Think about a book that you've been trying to buy - Amazon lists all the information that you need. It includes the book title, author name, publisher's name, number of pages, a brief snapshot of the book, price, dimensions, offers/discounts, reviews, and more.

These documents are quite common both in the B2B and B2C domains.
"A product catalog is a type of marketing collateral that lists essential product details that help buyers make a purchase decision."

Who Needs Product Catalogs?

Product catalogs are useful to several business users and groups such as sales reps, inside sales, buyers, store clerks, field marketers, and managers. Here's how each group uses it:

  • Sales reps and inside sales teams

    use a product catalog to convey vital information about a product or a service to their customers. They can refer to it while communicating with their prospects and customers about the benefits of using their products.

  • Buyers and decision-makers

    need it as reference material while making a purchase decision. It helps them to compare different products/services from various vendors and decide the most suitable option for their business.

  • Store and warehouse managers

    shift managers, and operators use it to know about the details of the inventory in their godowns.

  • Field marketers

    can use it while they are walking customers through demos of their products and solutions. It helps them dive deep into their offering and offer value to their customers as the latter group is experiencing the product.

  • External parties such as agencies, partners, resellers, and value-added sellers

    use it to get information about a product and service and sharing it with end-users.

9 reasons why you need product catalogs

Before we go any further, let us understand why we need product catalogs.

  • To Glean Information

    Information such as technical information and features about products is impossible to memorize. Recording them on documents in a usable format helps the user know about a product in detail. Publishing information on product information packs that find a place on websites allows customers to know about it without a sales rep's interference.

  • Reduce Business Cycles

    Imagine having to go back and forth with customers on emails sharing information endlessly, which leads to no positive outcome. Instead, sharing information on digital catalogs can help move the deal from one stage to the other. With information available to customers efficiently, it reduces clogs within the business cycle.

  • Help Sales Reps Sell

    Sales reps have just one primary responsibility - to sell. Collecting product data from different sources inside a business to disseminate to customers is not what they are paid to do. That is why digital catalogs help them share information effortlessly to their customers and generate sales. It saves them valuable time as all the information they need is available on their fingertips.

  • Improve Conversion Rate

    Product catalogs help businesses improve conversion rates as salespeople, and customers/prospects can have contextual conversations instead of spending time on problem discovery and solution. When customers have all the data that they need, they can seek approvals, make decisions, and buy products more efficiently.

  • Enhance Branding

    Product information documents are useful places to promote a company's brand. Using distinct colors, images, caricatures, cartoons, logo, font family, and a call to action can enable your brand to stand apart from the rest. Some businesses record their history and journey to establish a connection with their audience without being physically present. This enables users to easily recall a brand after browsing through its product catalogs.

  • Smooth Flow of Information

    It helps in a steady flow of information between internal and external stakeholders from the origin to the final destination. Product marketing teams, who are responsible for catalogs, can publish information on content management systems (CMSs) for end-users (sales teams and customer success teams) to use. There is no fretting over stale information in emails, CRMs, storage repositories, desktops, and libraries.

  • Generate Sales Offline

    Today, buyers research products online and make purchases offline - in malls, shops, events, etc. In such instances, it is important to help customers with information on their mobiles and iPads to fast-forward the buying process. Websites, landing pages, and microsites enable customers to research the requisite information to make up their minds.

  • Enhances User Experience

    When customers have product information in a PDF or a webpage embedded with images, links, reviews, price information, it enhances their user experience. Especially when all information is consistent across different product categories, it moves them one step closer to a purchase. Product marketers must anticipate buyer needs and create catalogs that match them instead of presenting general information.

  • Reduces Training Effort

    When information on products and solutions is in a digital form, it reduces the need to train and onboard salespeople, partners, retailers, and other users. It shrinks the learning curve as well because users do not need manual intervention.

Ingredients of a Product Catalog

What are the ingredients of a product catalog? What should they have to help different stakeholders meet their objectives? A business cannot have multiple documents for various stakeholders unless there are different use cases.

To save you the trouble, we analyzed documents across industries to come up with a broad list of must-haves. These are not specific to any company/industry, so pick the ones that are most suitable for your company:

Product Details (in alphabetical order)

  1. Call to Action

    What do you expect the target audience to do after seeing your brochure? Download/email/call you/share it socially? Append this information to let users contact you.

  2. Certifications

    List the certifications earned by the product such as ISO 9001, ISO 27001, etc.

  3. Constituents

    Mention its core constituents, e.g., copper, steel, alloy. This element varies based on your industry.

  4. Customer credentials

    Include credentials from customers who have given a thumbs-up.

  5. Description

    Briefly describe it so users can quickly scan it for reference.

  6. Dimensions

    Call out the length, height, breadth, weight, the volume of the product.

  7. Discounts

    Are there any early-bird/seasonal discounts for your product?

  8. Features

    Include the top features of the product.

  9. Guarantee/Warranty

    Specify any guarantee or warranty clauses applicable to the product.

  10. Ideal conditions of usage

    Indicate the best conditions and criteria for using the product. e.g., temperature, surroundings, etc.

  11. Name of the product

    What is the product name? If you have a brand name for it, don't forget to include it.

  12. Pictures

    Pictures speak more than words! They are the most critical component of a catalog.

  13. Price

    Mention the price of the product and the currency/geography applicable.

  14. Returns

    Under what conditions will the company accept returns of the product?

  15. Safety measures

    If your product requires safety measures before using, include them to inform and educate users.

  16. Size

    Name the size of the product.

  17. Terms & Conditions

    Call out the most typical terms and conditions of using the product.

  18. Version

    Name the version/release/series of the product. e.g., Windows 2016.

  19. Year of the launch

    Which year was the product launched?

Product Catalog Management

Product catalogs are detailed documents that need to be organized and managed to ensure higher utility. Here are the different aspects of product catalog management:

  • Storing/Organizing

    A business has diverse needs to publish and store product catalogs - such as teams, geographies, campaigns, marketing themes, business units, industries, types, etc.

    Based on the unique needs of a business, content management systems can publish and store product documents for their users to access and use. These digital documents must be searchable - which means CMSs must attach tags and attach descriptions to them.

  • Timely Updating

    All products change - while some of them are subtle changes, the rest are complete overhauls. For example, a hardware product such as a laptop or mobile phone may undergo several upgrades within a year. In these instances, it is vital to update product information continually. Moreso, in the case of sales teams because they are in touch with customers.

  • Distributing to Users

    Product brochures must be distributable to enhance the user experience and help buyers compare products and decide instantly. One way of getting the attention of buyers is by creating personalized microsites with multiple product brochures, each of which conveys vital information. This way, buyers can glide through different brochures, and choose the one/s that suit them.

  • Tracking/Analyzing Performance

    Users must be able to gain insights from the usage of product information sheets. It includes the number of views, downloads, re-shares, and time spent on each document. CMSs are powered by analytics capabilities that help product managers, marketers, and sales reps to efficiently analyze product performance, boost sales, and deliver a personalized user experience.

    For example, in an email campaign, sales reps must know which product catalog is providing the most value to buyers. It helps sales reps engage with customers meaningfully in sales conversations and fulfill their needs meticulously.

E-Marketing Reach the Globe

To reach the globe, stand out from the crowd and grow your business globally, e-marketing, web marketing, digital marketing, internet marketing or online marketing is the key in the era of technology.

With #creativity_in_action, e-marketing is cost-efficient, less risky, accessible, and interactive. In addition, e-marketing with #creativity_in_action is your gateway towards personalized marketing in which you showcase your products in global markets, and get an instant response from global customers.

Moreover, e-marketing facilitates exchanges and satisfy customer demands. E-marketing provides customers with more competitive prices and enables businesses to reduce operational costs.

E-marketing is a process of planning and executing the conception, distribution, promotion, and pricing of products and services in a computerized, networked environment, such as the Internet and the World Wide Web, to facilitate exchanges and satisfy customer demands. It has two distinct advantages over traditional marketing. E-marketing provides customers with more convenience and more competitive prices, and it enables businesses to reduce operational costs.

As businesses offer e-marketing and online shopping, customers can get market information from their computers or cell phones and buy goods or find services without leaving home twenty-four hours a day and seven days a week (24/7). They can read ads on the Web or from e-mail, get e-coupons, view pictures of goods, compare prices, and make purchases with a few clicks of their mouse, saving the time and money it would take to shop in person at a brick-and-mortar store. At the same time, e-businesses can reduce costs in distribution channels and physical store space and thus pass the savings on to customers.

To make e-marketing effective and efficient, managers of e-businesses need to know online customer behaviour, e-marketing techniques, costs and benefits of e-marketing over traditional marketing, and pitfalls and legal issues of e-marketing. A discussion of each of these aspects follows.


E-marketing techniques can be broken down to pull and push marketing. Pull marketing is a passive technique by which online shoppers take the initiative requesting specific information on the Web. Search engines, product/service advertising, e-coupons, and e-samples are part of pull marketing. For example, e-marketers can register their e-commerce sites, products, and services with search engines such as Google and or Yahoo, thereby enabling online shoppers to search for product/service information using Google or Yahoo and link to their sites. Similarly, e-marketers can also register their e-coupons and e-samples with e-coupon sites such as and e-sample sites such as

Push marketing is a proactive technique that enables e-marketers to "push" their product/service information to Web visitors or shoppers without their requesting it. Banner advertising, pop-up advertising, e-mail promotion, and spamming belong to push marketing. For instance, e-marketers can rent designated space from Internet service providers such as America Online or MSN for their banner or pop-up ads. Using animated graphics, appealing messages, and links, e-marketers try to lure visitors to their sites to buy their products or services. Many Internet users, however, find such ads annoying and employ software that blocks pop-ups and banner ads.

E-mail promotion is widely used by e-marketers to send new product/service information to their registered customers. For example, airline companies periodically e-mail their registered customers about their e-fares and promotional vacation packages. Spamming refers to sending millions of e-mail promotions to recipients who have never asked for the information. These recipients' e-mail addresses are often purchased or swapped with other businesses. Spamming is at best unethical and at worst illegal.


E-marketing can offer more competitive prices than traditional marketing because e-marketing reduces costs by not having to maintain physical store space and by strategically placing distribution centres throughout the country. Second, because the Internet is available 24/7, e-marketing enables shoppers to search for product/service information and buy goods at their convenience, not just when the store is open. Third, research indicates that the cost of Internet-based promotion is one-fourth of traditional promotion, because it does not incur the costs of paper, printing, handling, and mailing. Fourth, e-marketing enables buyers to custom-build products such as shoes, clothes, computers, and automobiles on the Web, options often not available in stores.

Content Writing Beyond Words

All language services within the reach
With #creativity_in_action, content writing is within your reach to take your business to the next level beyond words into a world of creativity that opens your way to the globe.

Content writing services (also known as online content writing services and content marketing services) is a category of work that first surfaced in the early 1990s, due to an exponential rise in online activities. Content writing services are firms, companies or group of writers that provide services such as blog writing for websites, web content writing, marketing material content, white papers, research articles, proof reading services, infographic content, social media content, press releases, product descriptions, copywriting services, and many more.

Content writing services generally charge a fixed per word rate which is popularly known as PPW (pay per word or price per word). However, many content writing firms also have pricing plans that offer fixed amount of content against subscription plans.

Present day content
The 21st century distinguishes content writing services into multiple segments. Such categorization comes from a diversified approach of presenting information in the World Wide Web Consortium. Today, in addition to its utilization for commercial descriptive purposes, individuals have taken up writing as a means to communicate with their global audience. The main subdivisions of content writing services today include.

  • Article - A descriptive piece of text used by companies and organizations to enlighten users on a particular topic. It highly informative and detailed in nature.
  • Blog - A personal journal that is maintained by an individual or an organization and needs to be uploaded as and when required. Blogs indulge in an interactive tone with its readers.
  • Press Release – A brief news story from an organization’s PR manager outlining recent facts, sales figures, profit margins, new services, product releases, etc. as laid down by the officials.
  • Web Content – Visually descriptive & interactive content present on the web pages of every website that highlights the services and amenities provided by a venture.
  • SEO Content – Search Engine Optimized Content so that it can rank in Search engine result pages on some particular queries.
  • Research and Report Writing – This type of content needs strong research and analytical bent of mind to write.
  • Copywriting – Copywriting is the act of writing the text for the purpose of advertising or other forms of marketing. The product, called copy, is written content that aims to increase brand awareness and ultimately persuade a person or group to take a particular action.
  • Social Media Content – This type of content has to be the most compelling, engaging and viral in nature. Used for Social media Optimization and Social Media Marketing.
  • Business Writing – It includes Sales proposals, memos, official emails, manual writing and another form of writing which is used by organizations in B2B or B2C communication.
  • Landing Page - The pages on which Ads of your search engine like Google and Bing lands. Ads of social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and so on also lands on the landing page. Landing Page content writing plays an important role in generating leads. Through the landing page, show the audience the benefits of getting the service from you.
  • Direct Marketing Copy - These are pieces that speak directly to a business' audience. For example, newsletters, emails, and marketing funnels.

Industry-wise Content Writing Services
Today content writing services are offered for various niche and industries. The popular industry-wise content writing service categories are:

  • Content Writing Services for IT Sector

    Such services provide range of content solutions for Information Technology Sector. Content required by IT industry include blogs, info graphics, buyer's guides, pricing guides, White papers, software comparison content, Software product analysis, case studies, technical content, email marketing content, podcasts, research articles, surveys, eBooks, marketing content, guest blogs, product and service lists etc.

  • Content Writing Services for Ecommerce Sector

    Ecommerce content writing services provide content such as product descriptions, product reviews, blogs, website content for ecommerce platform, copywriting, social media interaction content, content for product demo, video scripts etc.

  • Content Writing Services for Travel/Tourism Industry

    Content writing services provide content to travel aggregators for their websites, travel guides, blog content, list of tourist attractions, travelogues, travel fashion articles, destination articles, memoirs, travel advice articles, tour guides.

  • Content Writing Services for Education Sector

    It offers content to educational institutes such as schools, colleges, Business schools, coaching centers, academic bodies, etc. These institutes require blogs, academic articles, educational case studies, content for flyers, brochures, and banners, etc.

  • Content Writing Services for Digital Marketing Agencies

    Content writing services for digital marketing agencies provide content such as blog posts, social media content, video scripts, SEO content, content marketing material, Client articles, resource page content, web content, guest posts, podcast content, survey questionnaire, etc.

  • Content Writing Services for Small Businesses

    Small businesses need content for their website landing page, web pages, blog page, and other web properties. Apart from these, small businesses need case studies, research articles, press release for marketing, SEO optimized content, social media post content with captions, copywriting material etc.

  • Content Writing Services for Manufacturing Industry

    Content writing services for manufacturing sector need product descriptions, analytical content, compliance related material, industry news, proposals, surveys, articles about manufacturing trends, research articles, etc.

  • Content Writing services for Financial Sector

    Finance companies hire content writing services for website content, SEO content, reviews of asset classes, articles about current financial trends, investment strategies, market reviews, stock market articles, customer help articles, self-service articles for banking customers, financial research, etc.

Printing Professionalism in Details

Seamless designs and publications
Printing is a process for mass reproducing text and images using a master form or template. It has two major forms: offset and digital. Printing, whether digital or offset, is a key to the promotion and publicity of your visual identity, products and activities.

With #creativity_in_action, printing is an incomparable experience that provides seamless designs and publications in a creative digital and offset forms with the finest details mastered. Printing that goes beyond printing is at the click.

History of printing
Origins in China

By the end of the 2nd century CE, the Chinese apparently had discovered printing; certainly they then had at their disposal the three elements necessary for printing: (1) paper, the techniques for the manufacture of which they had known for several decades; (2) ink, whose basic formula they had known for 25 centuries; and (3) surfaces bearing texts carved in relief. Some of the texts were classics of Buddhist thought inscribed on marble pillars, to which pilgrims applied sheets of damp paper, daubing the surface with ink so that the parts that stood out in relief showed up; some were religious seals used to transfer pictures and texts of prayers to paper. It was probably this use of seals that led in the 4th or 5th century to the development of ink of a good consistency for printing.

A substitute for these two kinds of surfaces, the marble pillars and the seals, that was more practical with regard both to manageability and to size, appeared perhaps by the 6th century in the wood block. First, the text was written in ink on a sheet of fine paper; then the written side of the sheet was applied to the smooth surface of a block of wood, coated with a rice paste that retained the ink of the text; third, an engraver cut away the uninked areas so that the text stood out in relief and in reverse.

To make a print, the wood block was inked with a paintbrush, a sheet of paper spread on it, and the back of the sheet rubbed with a brush. Only one side of the sheet could be printed.

The oldest known printed works were made by this technique: in Japan about 764–770, Buddhist incantations ordered by Empress Shōtoku; in China in 868, the first known book, the Diamond Sūtra; and, beginning in 932, a collection of Chinese classics in 130 volumes, at the initiative of Fong Tao, a Chinese minister.

Invention of movable type (11th century)
About 1041–48 a Chinese alchemist named Pi Sheng appears to have conceived of movable type made of an amalgam of clay and glue hardened by baking. He composed texts by placing the types side by side on an iron plate coated with a mixture of resin, wax, and paper ash. Gently heating this plate and then letting the plate cool solidified the type. Once the impression had been made, the type could be detached by reheating the plate. It would thus appear that Pi Sheng had found an overall solution to the many problems of typography: the manufacture, the assembling, and the recovery of indefinitely reusable type.

In about 1313 a magistrate named Wang Chen seems to have had a craftsman carve more than 60,000 characters on movable wooden blocks so that a treatise on the history of technology could be published. To him is also attributed the invention of horizontal compartmented cases that revolved about a vertical axis to permit easier handling of the type. But Wang Chen’s innovation, like that of Pi Sheng, was not followed up in China.

In Korea, on the contrary, typography, which had appeared by the first half of the 13th century, was extensively developed under the stimulus of King Taejong, who, in 1403, ordered the first set of 100,000 pieces of type to be cast in bronze. Nine other fonts followed from then to 1516; two of them were made in 1420 and 1434, before Europe in its turn discovered typography.

Transmission of paper to Europe (12th century)
Paper, the production of which was known only to the Chinese, followed the caravan routes of Central Asia to the markets at Samarkand, whence it was distributed as a commodity across the entire Arab world.

The transmission of the techniques of papermaking appears to have followed the same route; Chinese taken prisoner at the Battle of Talas, near Samarkand, in 751 gave the secret to the Arabs. Paper mills proliferated from the end of the 8th century to the 13th century, from Baghdad and then on to Spain, then under Arab domination. Paper first penetrated Europe as a commodity from the 12th century onward through Italian ports that had active commercial relations with the Arab world and also, doubtless, by the overland route from Spain to France. Papermaking techniques apparently were rediscovered by Europeans through an examination of the material from which the imported commodity was made; possibly the secret was brought back in the mid-13th century by returning crusaders or merchants in the Eastern trade. Papermaking centres grew up in Italy after 1275 and in France and Germany in the course of the 14th century.

But knowledge of the typographic process does not seem to have succeeded, as papermaking techniques had, in reaching Europe from China. It would seem that typography was assimilated by the Uighurs who lived on the borders of Mongolia and Turkistan, since a set of Uighur typefaces, carved on wooden cubes, has been found that date from the early 14th century. It would be surprising if the Uighurs, a nomadic people usually considered to have been the educators of other Turco-Mongolian peoples, had not spread the knowledge of typography as far as Egypt. There it may have encountered an obstacle to its progress toward Europe, namely, that, even though the Islamic religion had accepted paper in order to record the word of Allah, it may have refused to permit the word of Allah to be reproduced by artificial means.

The invention of printing
Thus, the essential elements of the printing process collected slowly in western Europe, where a favourable cultural and economic climate had formed.

Colour printing
As early as 1457 a psalter, which Peter Schöffer signed but which some researchers now attribute to Gutenberg, included, in imitation of the contemporary illuminated manuscripts, paragraphs beginning with ornamental capital letters printed in two colours. This was accomplished by the use of two wood blocks that fitted one inside the other and could be separately inked.

Experiments to reproduce pictures in several colours on wood blocks were made in Germany in the 16th century. In the 17th century, different inks were applied to the different parts of the same engraved metal plate in such a way that all the inks were transferred to the paper in a single pressing. In 1719 a painter, Jacques-Christophe Le Blond, took out a patent in England for a process that used the three primary colours, blue, yellow, and red, and black for outlining shapes. Using a dense grid, he engraved four metal plates, bringing out on each plate the relative importance of the colour involved. The same sheet of paper then went through four successive impressions, each in a different colour.

In the 19th century the scientific definition of the principles of trichromatism, the enunciation of the fundamental theories of three-colour analysis and synthesis of colours by photography, the perfecting of coatings selectively sensitive to colours, and finally the use of the screen, instead of Le Blond’s hand-drawn grid, established the modern trichromatic technique (which becomes quadrichromatic when black is also used).