On January 24th, 1984 Apple unleashed a revolution in personal computing. A few months later Michael Silverander bought a then state-of-the-art Macintosh with a whopping 128 kilobytes of memory. He paid extra for the external floppy disc drive. While the Mac would go on to change many facets of the business world—the typesetting, printing and graphic arts industries were particularly impacted. It was the beginning of an avalanche of rapid technological advancements.
In those early days only two programs were available for the Macintosh—MacPaint and MacWrite. But before long, Mike and his employees were able to see a representation of a printed page on a screen in front of their very eyes. Revolutionary stuff for the graphic arts community, not only in Santa Barbara but around the world.
“Instead of literally cutting and pasting images and text, and then sending those paste-ups to a printer who would take a picture of the paste-ups, use that to create a plate, and finally print whatever the project was, we were eventually able to create a file on the Mac and send that file directly to a printing company,” Mike said. “The enhanced capabilities and efficiency were apparent from the outset. ”
“We’re in the idea business,” Silverander said. “Every day we are tasked with communicating something new for our clients. Researching and arriving at a solution that’s tailor-made for each company we work with is what we do best, and the explosion of new technology over the last few decades has given us the ability to come up with a far greater range of solutions than we would have ever thought possible,” he added.
In certain ways that greater range of possibilities makes Mike’s job more challenging, but it’s also what he loves most about his business. As the principal of one of the few Santa Barbara communication agencies that’s been around since the 1980s, he recognizes that the ability to adapt and grow with changing times is an invaluable asset.
Ultimately it doesn’t matter whether the work Mike and his team produces goes on to create a digital impression or one that’s made by ink on paper. When done properly, they support one another and are each relevant in their own way. What’s most important for his clients is answering two key questions at the beginning of every project: what are you trying to say and who do you want to say it to? “Time and time again we reduce the projects we’re working on to those basic questions, and then apply large amounts of common sense,” he said.
Though technology and the communications industry continue to grow and evolve, for Mike and Silverander Communications, one thing will never change about the way they do business: honoring the importance of understanding the customer, developing a rapport, and allowing that to guide the pieces into place for every project.