I can’t help but notice people beginning to grasp hold of the past and seek meaningful ways to connect with it. I’m not sure whether it’s the economy or the state of the world in general, but I sense a longing for the good-old days. Whether through music, theater, treasured old photographs or naming of children, people seem drawn to the past as never before.
As evidenced by the popular new website and Instagram feed savefamilyphotos.com, created and curated by my friend Rachel LaCour Niesen, it seems the world is beginning to celebrate old family photos and share the stories that they inspire. This developing trend and exciting new marketplace presents a huge opportunity for photo retailers.
Our customers will need our help in understanding the process, and making the daunting task easy to execute. For example:
1. They will need a step-by-step scanning road map with all available options presented in a clear and knowledgeable way.
2. They will need help organizing old and new photos in systematic ways tailored to their needs.
3. They will need to be enlightened about the myriad of output options.
Golden Opportunities in the Age of the Archiving Expert—You!
Most photo specialty companies are experienced with high-speed, high-volume scanning. It’s time we told the world what we are capable of doing! Do your customers know that you are the archiving expert? Do they know you have the ability to convert all things analog? Do they understand the term “shoebox scanning”? Are you selling scanning as a simple solution? Evaluate what you are doing and be mindful that, as with any growing opportunity, others will begin to enter our marketplace. Become the expert and deliver the message to your customer!
Scanning and Transfers
If you haven’t invested in bulk scanning equipment and software, do it now. There’s great equipment available and training your staff is easy. If you are already in this business, be sure to consider the latest in technology, as advancements in scanning and transfer devices have been occurring at a rapid pace. Also, evaluate your choice of storage media. Many companies are going beyond DVDs, choosing flash drives and hard drives, which are part of a more reliable disc-less future.
Even though organizing may be the customers’ responsibility, we, as retailers, can play a key role in helping customers rein in images they’ve been saving on their phones, hard drives, online, old computers and in shoeboxes. The Association of Personal Photo Organizers (APPO, appo.org) would love to partner with you to help your customers in this arena. APPO will show you how to equip your customers with the tools they need to rescue, manage, organize and save their photos and easily find, preserve and share their family stories.
Recently, Fullerton Photographics hosted a well-attended, free-of-charge, organizing event, led by an APPO associate. Many happy and profitable customer relationships were formed that evening.
Organizing software has been available for some time, but soon there will be an opportunity for photo specialty retailers to partner with MyLO Development LLC. The company was recently founded by David Vaskevitch and a team of photographers, developers and storytellers for people who love the art of photography and the possibilities enabled by evolving technologies. The company created Mylio (mylio.com), a next-generation photo management system that will help photographers gather, organize and protect the digital images they’ve been storing, as well as prints hidden away in shoeboxes.
Debuting at PhotoPlus Expo in New York City on October 29, 2014, Mylio.com will present stories to inform, entertain and inspire our customers to understand the importance of photo management, organization and preservation. Sandra LeDuc, digital marketing director for Mylio, is developing valuable content such as pro photographers’ powerful capture experiences and image loss lessons, capture-to-preservation workflow and clever storage tips.
Let the fun begin! When our customers realize the newly archived treasures in their midst, they’ll be dazzled by the possibilities. This holiday season, we are showing new products that are perfect complements to old photos.
Our “Smart Print Set” is a collection of 24 square prints that are perfect for new and old images alike. Packaging is key. So are the card stock papers. We also love photos on bamboo. Creating finished mounted products on non-silver halide papers with edgy borders works well with vintage photos. Metal is another incredible medium for showing off archived photos. And don’t forget the scanning box itself. It makes a wonderful gift.
As our customers continue capturing moments and rediscovering the past, we can help them protect a priceless family possession: their memories.