Sometimes great new product ideas catch on and change the world. Products like the iMac, Ford Mustang, or facebook come along and reframe everything. And then there are products like New Coke, Pepsi Clear, the Microsoft Zune, and HD-DVD. They’re great ideas, good products, but they just, don’t quite make it. In the case of New Coke, one of the most notorious product failures in recent history, a beloved product was replaced because somebody at Coca Cola thought it was new and improved. Somebody thought it regain market share lost to Pepsi. Somebody thought it was a brilliant move. Somebody forgot to check with the customers.

New and improved doesn’t always work. New Coke fell flat and Old Coke came back as Coca Cola Classic. Sometimes that happens in our little industry. Remember the Encad VinylJet? But every once in a while, a new and improved product comes along, the customers have their say, the manufacturer listens, and everybody ends up with a win. This is one of those times.

Hotmark and Hotmark revolution.

Hotmark and HotMark Revolution are the New Coke and Classic Coke of our industry. Sort of. HotMark has been a popular heat transfer film with our customers for well over a decade. It gained a wide following due to its exceptionally soft hand, consistent product quality, and unrivaled color palette. It came in 50 colors and we offered it four roll lengths from 3 to 66 feet. And, as demand for XXL ‘spirit wear’ jerseys grew, we added 20-inch widths. There were over 440 varieties of sizes and colors. Holy Kaleidoscope Batman! As time went by, newer hot peel films came to market and Chemica US decided they need something similar, something new and improved. So, in the fall of 2016, they introduced HotMark Revolution. HotMark Revolution is aptly named. It was Chemica’s first truly universal heat transfer vinyl. Whereas most t-shirt vinyls can only be used on cotton, polyester and cotton-poly blends, HotMark Revolution can be applied to just about any fabric, including Nylon. It can be applied to cotton 3 times faster than HotMark. It can be applied to colored polyester at lower temperatures that prevent dye migration. And it’s a warm peel film so it works better in high production environments. With such an obviously new and improved product, the fine folks at Chemica US decided to replace stuffy old cold-peel HotMark with HotMark Revolution. Why use HotMark when you can have HotMark Revolution, right? If Chemica were to star in a Men in Black remake with Will Smith, HotMark would be ‘old and busted’ and HotMark Revolution would be “new hotness”. You get the picture. So what happened?

New and Improved? Yes, but...

Sometimes what you think is an asset turns into a liability. HotMark Revolution can be applied to all kinds of apparel, which is really cool. But to do that, you have to learn what settings to use for what fabric. It’s not hard, just different. Sometimes, different can be confusing. But the main difference was the selection. Remember that unrivaled 50-color palette? Roll sizes from 3 to 66- feet? 15 and 20 wide rolls? All that variety? Well, for reasons we won’t go into here, HotMark Revolution came to market with only 12 colors. And those 12 colors only came in 15” by five-yard rolls. As great a product as it is, it’s hard to replace 50 colors in 9 varieties of roll sizes with 12 colors in one size. HotMark fans were not impressed. They wanted their colors and they wanted them now! They called, they complained. They stormed Castle Chemica with torches and pitchforks. Okay, that’s a bit of an exaggeration. But they were not happy.

The Revolution Resolution

The fine folks at Chemica US took heed and reversed course. They cranked up the HotMark machines and put ‘em back in business. Yes friend, Hotmark is back. We are happy to report that we now have all 50 colors in stock. Well…49 actually. And we stock them in nine different roll sizes. That’s over 441 varieties of good old reliable, super-soft, HotMark heat transfer film. You want a 15” x 3-foot roll of Raspberry? You got it. You want a 15” by 22-foot roll of Fluorescent Orange? Yes ma’am! You want a 20” by 66-foot roll of Tangerine? Allllrighty then! You want some, don't you? Click here and shop your heart out. And for those who took the step forward and embraced HotMark Revolution, you will be happy to know this where the “New Coke” analogy falls apart because Revolution is still around. And it’s now available in 28 popular colors. You can get it in 15” widths in rolls from 3 to 66 feet. So, you change agents get to keep your do-it-all, warm-peel, high production, heat transfer film. And the HotMark devotees are happy again. Everybody wins.