About Jennifer Kruger

Jennifer Barr Kruger is Director of Communications for Photo Marketing Association International and Publisher of PMA magazine. In addition, Kruger is editor of PMA Newsline and PMA Newsline Weekly, and was previously the editor of several other industry publications. She is a contributor to both the DIMAcast (www.DIMAcast.com) and the Imaging Executive Podcast (www.imagingexecutive.com). Kruger is a 2010 ADDY Award winner for podcasting. She joined PMA in 1994.

PMA Australia Specialty Industry Conference focuses on moving to the consumer

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1451PMA Australia is holding a Specialty Industry Conference, Oct. 31-Nov. 2 in Sydney, with the theme of “Moving to the Consumer“. Providing education to consumers is one of the primary ways PMA is helping its members grow their businesses.

“The recently held Educational Expos in Brisbane and Melbourne clearly demonstrated how PMA can co-ordinate retailers, suppliers and consumers in a very cost effective event, which can now be replicated in markets across Australia. The positive consumer, supplier and retailer feedback we received following these events give us real enthusiasm to launch a further four events in 2015,” says Peter Rose, PMA Director of Australian Activities. “Camera House, Teds and other major retailers were instrumental in supporting this program with financial underwriting from APCI, which was co-ordinated by our Chairperson, Paul Atkins. Canon and Nikon agreed to sponsor the program. This co-operative approach was key to their success and will be a major factor in deciding where events will be staged next year. The overall objective is to make consumer photo education easily accessible and affordable, with the close co-operation of PMA members in those areas.”

Peter adds the program of speakers, panels and workshops for the 2014 Specialty Industry Conference is our strongest yet. “If you are serious about the future of your business,” he states, “you should be there.”

 

MMIE 578: Looking for more revenue? Try this

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MIME Logo PMANMcCurry Marketing Idea Exchange #578 – October 21, 2014

Steve Biggs, Biggs Camera, Charlotte, N.C.

Looking for another revenue stream? Have you considered equipment rentals? Steve Biggs was one of three retailers who took part in a PRO Convention discussion on the subject, and he is quite positive about  what the rental business is doing for his bottom line. mmie 578

He notes the photofinishing business has “gone away,” and rentals have brought in-store traffic up. Not only that, offering equipment rentals brings into the store “ideal customers.” These are the weekend warriors, the pros needing backup equipment, the hobbyist who isn’t going to buy but who wants to try out some piece of gear, and the parents who have a special event to photograph, such as soccer games (long lens) and school plays (fast lens).

Biggs doesn’t have a huge rental inventory, and over the course of a half dozen years has found out what items need to be inventoried in depth. Inventory includes camera bodies, lenses, flash, and lighting gear, all of which can be sold off at a decent price after bringing in constant rental fees.

For more on the subject, keep your eyes out for a major story in an upcoming issue of PMA Magazine.

Now it’s your turn

• Got a promotion that worked? An idea generated by a staffer? Something that’s exciting and/or motivating the crew? Doing something that’s bringing customers in, got customers buzzing, got them buying? Tell us.

• We’d appreciate getting pictures to help illustrate the ideas.

• Send your ideas to editor@McCurryAssoc.com.

• Don’t worry if you’re not the best writer; we’ll be happy to tidy things up for you.

• The archived editions of the McCurry Marketing Ideas Exchange contain more than 1,000 marketing ideas as a resource for you: www.TinyURL.com/McCurryIdeas

On the PMA Podcast: Get on board with Save Your Photos Day

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PMApodcast_icon_sqOn this episode of the PMA Podcast, Jen Kruger, publisher of PMA Magazine, talks with Cathi Nelson, founder of the Association of Personal Photo Organizers (APPO) and the Save Your Photos Alliance. The Alliance held its first annual Save Your Photos Day for the first time on September 27. Listen in at www.pmapodcast.org, or using the player below, as Cathi discusses the concept behind the event, how the idea spread to four different countries in only 90 days, what imaging businesses did to make the most of it in their communities, and how you can get involved next time around.

In memoriam: Chuck Lynch

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Chuck Lynch

Chuck Lynch

Charles Edwin (“Chuck”) Lynch Jr., age 64, died unexpectedly from a heart condition on Oct. 10, 2014 while visiting family in Georgia. Chuck was born on March 30, 1950, in Richmond, Va., and grew up in Camden, South Carolina. Following graduation from Camden High School, he attended Georgia Tech University, where his love of photography and technology began.

He began his long career in the photography industry in 1981 at Meisel Professional Lab in Atlanta, and continued with the Hamlin Photo Co., also in Atlanta. In 1989, he and his young family moved to Minneapolis for his work with Lucht Engineering, and five years later they moved to North Carolina for Chuck’s employment with Church Impressions. In 2002, he joined Inter-State Studio in Sedalia, Mo., where he worked until his death.

Chuck is survived by the love of his life, Karen Bradford Lynch; son, Charles Edwin Lynch, III; daughter, Jennifer Jane Lynch; step-daughter, Valerie Lynn Roper; and sister, Jane Lynch Coghill..

To honor Chuck and celebrate his life, family and friends will gather at McLaughlin Funeral Chapel on Saturday, Oct. 18, 2014, at 1:00 p.m. A reception will immediately follow at Inter-State Studio. Memorial contributions are suggested to the American Heart Association or the Sedalia Lions Club in care of McLaughlin Funeral Chapel

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MMIE 577: Celebrate with video

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MIME Logo PMANMcCurry Marketing Idea Exchange #577 – October 14, 2014

Neil McBain, McBain Camera, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada;

What’s the best way to celebrate a milestone . . . or two? For McBain Camera in the western Canadian province of Alberta, the answer is a video.

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One of the McBain Camera storefronts.

McBain has been in business since 1949 and is still under original ownership, with five stores in Edmonton as well as one in Sherwood Park, St. Albert, Red Deer, and Lethbridge. The company employs more than 95 people.

To celebrate the company’s 65th anniversary and founder Ross McBain’s 90th birthday, the McBains decided to get on the YouTube bandwagon and create a video.

“We tried to create something that was fun and entertaining as well as let people know a little bit of what we do,” says Neil, owner, and second generation McBain, and along the way, have a bit of fun making it.

Check out the video here.

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Video still: Two generations of McBains, Ross, left, and Neil, right, sandwich Ron Neumann, buyer.

McBain is part of the Foto Source buying group, and as Neil points out, it was Foto Source TV which did the filming and post production, including finding the musicians. Neil created most of the script.

Filming took about three days, off and on.

McBain Camera is currently in the final stages of preparation for its sixth annual Edmonton Photographic Trade Show, which occupies a major chunk of real estate in the University of Alberta Butterdome.

 

Now it’s your turn.

• Got a promotion that worked? An idea generated by a staffer? Something that’s exciting and/or motivating the crew? Doing something that’s bringing customers in, got customers buzzing, got them buying? Tell us.

• We’d appreciate getting pictures to help illustrate the ideas.

• Send your ideas to editor@McCurryAssoc.com.

• Don’t worry if you’re not the best writer; we’ll be happy to tidy things up for you.

• The archived editions of the McCurry Marketing Ideas Exchange contain more than 1,000 marketing ideas as a resource for you: www.TinyURL.com/McCurryIdeas

Business Success: Wait, mental telepathy isn’t perfected?

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Business Success LogoBeing in charge carries many responsibilities — including directing the overall goals of your company. In this week’s Business Success column, Eisen Agency CEO Rodger Roeser tells us how running your own firm means you must take the reigns when necessary.

Thought Leadership and the Big Tuna
By Rodger Roeser

As the big tuna for a content development firm, we are often asked to craft and conceptualize thought leadership campaigns for our clientele. We also often practice it ourselves, as we believe it is a critical component of any good content development and brand development program.

I am the CEO of my firm. Key word: Mine. And with that comes unique insights and expertise that other leaders in other industries may not have. So, as a thought leader I believe it’s critical for the actual thought leader to pen the piece — Not the marketing team.

While I do believe it’s important for the marketing and content development team to review and edit, it’s critical that leadership is constantly looking both introspectively and externally at factors and ideas affecting their business and their industry – and get it down on paper, tape or video. Thought leadership need not be limited by medium, and certainly should not be limited by leadership.

A CEO or other executive, it should be expected, has their finger on the pulse of the industry, and is able to take their knowledge, background and expertise to bring perhaps disparate ideas and concepts together that should objectively push forward an idea or ideal. Thought leadership is exactly what it sounds like, taking the thoughts of leadership and sharing that information. Leaders must lead and, until mental telepathy is perfected, that content must be captured and shared.

And in truth, thought leadership should be simple for an executive, even if they can’t write. For starters, as the CEO, you should have some grasp of the expertise or knowledge you’re sharing — it shouldn’t involve exhaustive research, but instead be unique insight based on your expertise, and where you think things are going. Of course, adding in industry research to back up your thoughts, or real world examples, is helpful. And instead of writing, leaders could do a podcast audio interview, a video, or even a voiceover for an animated piece. I personally love sitting at the computer and penning my latest masterpiece, but as a former journalist I have an advantage some of my C-Suite brethren may not have. But that’s no excuse not to get your ideas down in some form.

Charge your marketing team with forward thinking by reviewing and presenting editorial calendars on topics leadership finds interesting and items you believe will enhance and bolter both engagement from your varied publics and make you look like you know what you’re talking about. Get these editorial calendars from both industry media outlets and other well known outlets that tend to share bigger thinking to get ideas as to the topics industry, mainstream and other business media is interested in. Oh, you don’t have that? Talk to your PR person (or hire a smarter PR firm).

From those topics (and there will be many), review the ones that you believe are going to give you the strongest possibility of sharing content that would be valued by those you wish to digest your content (a la, analysts, potential customers, so on). Waxing poetic about how smart you are, while you’re mom may love that, my not engage potential clients – so whatever you write, write it for the objective benefit of your audience. Thought leadership pieces can be short, with some quick pieces of expertise and advice you wish to share. Lists are popular, such as “The Top Five Things That Will Affect Our Industry Next Year,” or incredibly detailed and research oriented. It all depends on your goals, the time you have to invest (you should invest at least 10 hours a month on development of thought leadership pieces) and what you personally wish to achieve – not for the business, but for you.

You see, most B2B and B2C customer and client engagements are indeed influenced by the Big Tuna. If “they” don’t like or trust or value the leadership, most won’t buy – whether that product is diapers or stocks. Reputation is important. And, as a leader, that reputation can be built, maintained and shaped by quality thought leadership and content development. Once crafted, work with your media relations team to get those published and share them with the world.

You’ll increase your personal stock, help your business and hey, people will think you’re smart. And that, is good for everyone.

Rodger Roeser is the CEO of The Eisen Agency. Headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio, the award-winning public relations and content development firm specializes in marketing communications strategies for professional services organizations. More information is here.

Focus on: Raj Patel

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In this week’s “Focus on” column, we invited Raj Patel, from Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire, to tell his own story.

Raj Patel photo Oct 14I started my career in Nairobi, Kenya, fresh from school,and worked my way up from junior assistant to General Manager of a well-known retailer before leaving to emigrate to the United Kingdom in 1992.

During my 21 years there, I gained invaluable experience of their successful multi-channel business, and the new minilab business in particular, which was especially helpful when I later joined one of the main processing businesses in the U.K. and took over the running of one of their minilab businesses.

However, I had always had the ambition to run my own business, and when the opportunity came along in 1999, I did not hesitate to open my own new minilab business in Welwyn Garden City, with the support and assistance of my wife Urvi who still works alongside me today. I have also benefited both from being a member of PMA and having access to other members and colleagues who can offer advice and support when needed.

So, fifteen years later, despite many changes in our industry, my business continues to provide for me and my family, and by embracing the changes that have come along and by providing our customers with excellent service and quality products, we continue to grow stronger. Long may it continue!

MMIE 576: Make it a treat

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MIME Logo PMANMcCurry Marketing Idea Exchange #576 – October 7, 2014

Hallowe’en is on a Friday this year, which means more kids coming to the door because there’s no school the next day, and more parties, ‘cause there’s no work the next day . . . except for those of us in retail.

So, expect more to be made of, and from, this Hallowe’en. How can you get some of the action? mmie 576

We’re of two minds about having the staff dress up on Friday in some kind of costume. On the pro side, it’s fun. On the con side, it’s not professional. Mind you, our family doctor and his staff have always costumed up on Hallowe’en, and if there’s anyone you want to be professional, it’s your doctor . . .

So here’s three ideas which could work for you this Hallowe’en, all designed to get people into the store:

1) Offer a prize for best costume. Come in to the store and let us see your costume; the staff will choose, at store closing, the best costume. The winner (runner-ups . . . that’s up to you) gets . . . well, again, up to you. This is something which could really be promoted on social media, with Twitter feed, for example, hyping the costumes as they come in the store.

2) Come in and have your costume photo taken. Do a special promo.

3) Another contest idea, offer prizes for best DIY Hallowe’en image printed using one of your kiosks . . . a post-Halloween contest, but promoted before, again using social media.

Is there a coffee bar or similar purveyor of hot drinks near you? Maybe a discount coupon from them might generate business for your neighbor while making you into a really good guy. Just steer clear of handing out unwrapped or gummy candy; sticky fingers and lenses just don’t get along!

So what’s your idea?

• Got a promotion that worked? An idea generated by a staffer? Something that’s exciting and/or motivating the crew? Doing something that’s bringing customers in, got customers buzzing, got them buying? Tell us.

• We’d appreciate getting pictures to help illustrate the ideas.

• Send your ideas to editor@McCurryAssoc.com.

• Don’t worry if you’re not the best writer; we’ll be happy to tidy things up for you.

• The archived editions of the McCurry Marketing Ideas Exchange contain more than 1,000 marketing ideas as a resource for you: www.TinyURL.com/McCurryIdeas

On the PMA Podcast: PMA Official Business Sessions speakers Colby Jubenville and Bill McCurry

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PMApodcast_icon_sqColby Jubenville says being unique, agile and fast is paramount to your success in business. The co-author of “Zebras and Cheetahs,” he has suggestions to help you rethink your approach to being unique. This episode of the PMA Podcast features Jubenville on the McCurry Marketing Idea Exchange. Listen and discover that just as every zebra has unique stripe patterns, every successful business can use its strengths and collective passion to be unique. On January 4, 2014, spend some time with both Colby Jubenville and Bill McCurry at the Official Business Session during the PMA 2015 Conferences at Bally’s Las Vegas. Get ready to kick start your business to move at cheetah speed with agility to respond to whatever 2015 holds for your organization.

Discover how to be zebra-unique and cheetah-agile at the PMA 2015 Official Business Session

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image005Take a walk on the wild side — wild success in your business, that is.

PMA announces Colby B. Jubenville, Ph.D., author of the book Zebras & Cheetahs: Look Different and Stay Agile To Survive The Business Jungle, and imaging industry/retailing expert Bill McCurry will be sharing the stage at the first of two Official Business Sessions being held at Bally’s Las Vegas on January 5-6, 2015, as part of the PMA 2015 Conferences.

This keynote address, called Look Different. Run Faster. Win Bigger, is based on Jubenville’s book, and promises to show attendees how to be superstars in the imaging industry. To be better known and better understood, you have to begin with a unique perspective and mindset. To look different, you must understand your unique value and communicate with emotion. To run faster, you must embrace the “Coaching Revolution” and cultivate an entrepreneurial mindset.

The interactive session will explain the philosophy found in Zebras & Cheetahs: Look Different and Stay Agile To Survive The Business Jungle. You’ll discover imaging industry examples of organizations that look different and stay agile because they are Zebra Different and Cheetah Fast. You will leave with focus, clarity and direction about how to be a superstar in your life and business.

Jubenville is an accomplished entrepreneur, inventor, author, speaker and professor. He holds an academic appointment at Middle Tennessee State University and is Principal of Red Herring Innovation and Design, an agency specializing in helping people and organizations become better known, better understood, and better understand the unique value they deliver, and is also founder of QRTechnologies, an intellectual property firm that specializes in creating and delivering learning materials that fulfill education and marketing needs resulting in faster adoption and greater retention of knowledge.

McCurry travels the English-speaking world listening to imaging leaders. He consistently brings back to his audiences proven strategies that break new ground and show the path to greater success. Bill was inducted into the PMA Hall of Fame in 2012. He has more than 100 Marketing Idea Exchanges on www.DIMAcast.com and helped launch the new www.PMAPodcast.org. PMA Newsline carries his weekly written Marketing Idea Exchange. He has written four books for PMA, had his own business radio talk show, consults and lectures across the globe. Most importantly, he has passion for independent business owners to succeed and flourish. His goal is your success.

The PMA 2015 Conferences are being held at Bally’s, just prior to the Digital Imaging/Photography Conference and Marketplace, presented by PMA, at 2015 International CES in the South Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center.

To register for this and all the exciting sessions and opportunities PMA has to offer in conjunction with CES this January, visit http://bit.ly/1rpOCMm.