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Pre-media is the term that is used in the design, creative and publishing industries for the processes and procedures that occur between the conception of original artwork and the manufacturing of final output channel.

It is a process that combines creative art and technology to communicate the final message to a consumer.

Pre-media should ideally provide the ability to supply design execution all the way to ready-to-publish files developed on industry-standard software, delivered on the platform of choice and ensuring that the client’s requirements are met. In short, any form of input channel to any form of output channel.

It includes the processes that allow an individual or company to visually communicate its message to its audience in the medium that best suits the demographics for that message. This should all be provided in the correct specifications and for the desired output channel.

With such a vast landscape to cover, pre-media has a number of categories that fall under its banner. Those categories, listed below, have a vast array of technical requirements each complementing and dependent upon each other to provide rich and relevant content to the destination channel.

Colour management Pre-flighting Page assembly and layout Marketing Intelligence
Contract proofing Soft proofing Asset management Trans Promo
Colour retouching Image composition Scanning
Advertising management Trapping Approval processes
Final file creation Customer communication Work Solutions
Web to Print Print on demands Video Production


The term "pre-media" was developed in tandem with the Internet and mobile communications industries, both of which have evolved to almost dominate modern-day life[citation needed].

As these forms of communication and access to consumers grew, so the need to facilitate brand messages and publishing into this new space became a necessity. As a result of this, the traditional method of communication through print started to morph into a multi channel environment whereby marketing and communications could access clients through many different means.

Hence the traditional agencies involved in the print oriented activities of pre-press, repro and creative started to adapt in order to utilize the various output delivery channels demanded by their clients. These companies needed to provide the ability to service these channels with existing and new client work and a whole new world of file creation, preparation, management and transition was developed. Pre-media was born therefore as a necessary phrase to encompass the whole new world of multichannel media delivery.

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