On the PMA Podcast: Saving and organizing your photos

Nelson Cathi appo

 

Nelson Cathi appo

According to the Association of Personal Photo Organizers, almost two trillion printed photos still languish in boxes and containers, rich with stories and traditions waiting to be shared and enjoyed. 1 Trillion more are taken every year.

Cathi Nelson founded APPO as an answer to the growing need for assistance for organizing an influx of digital photo memories, printed photos, media and memorabilia.

On this episode of the PMA Podcast, Nelson talks about the growth of the organization, and the work starting now on the upcoming Save Your Photos Day marketing campaign.

You can download the audio episode or subscribe to the podcast here.

 

Or you can tune in now with the player below.

PMA announces new strategic direction and initiatives

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PMAlogo_CMYK_smallSince early in January, we have been on a mission to determine the best way for PMA to move forward into the future. Our goal has been to recapture the vitality of PMA, and its ability to fulfill the changing needs of the photography industry. With that goal in mind, we have sought input and direction from hundreds of industry members, gathering insight into their business challenges and how PMA can help address them.

With the impassioned support of so many, and in conjunction with a very motivated staff and Executive Committee, we have conducted interviews, scheduled in-person visits and made phone calls. We have attended conferences all over the world; we have surveyed the industry; and we have gathered leading representatives from across the imaging spectrum for a two-day strategic retreat, held last month in Virginia.

All these efforts have provided us with a wealth of information. After carefully analyzing it all, together with the Executive Committee and staff, we have determined four key pillars that will be the cornerstones on which we will build the new PMA. We are delighted to say the PMA Executive Committee voted unanimously, on May 13, 2015, to move forward with this strategic direction.

PMA will:

• Empower businesses to effectively serve and sell to the consumer

We will provide tools and resources to help you build your business, and to increase consumer enthusiasm for photography products, services and equipment. Our goal is to create a better and more direct connection between consumers and service providers.

The first example of this effort is already well underway – it is our National Photo Month website, at www.natlphotomonth.org. This site offers a constantly expanding menu of photography tips and inspiration for consumers, as well as business tools and ready-made marketing materials for our members, to take full advantage of the excitement around National Photo Month. It’s also home to the first in our new series of photo contests. Prizes, awarded at both the professional and the hobbyist level, are worth up to $3,000 in each category. This site has tips and resources that can be used by PMA members internationally, even though its current focus is the U.S. National Photo Month event. After May, the site will transition to a permanent consumer-facing site, Celebratephotos.com, to keep the excitement growing worldwide on an ongoing basis.

Evangelize, advocate and promote overall industry interests

PMA will advocate on behalf on the industry to encourage positive press and government action in favor of photography businesses, developing an outreach strategy for educating and informing federal agencies about the real consumer benefits that flow directly from local businesses. We are already working in this arena, with the help of Don Kennedy from our U.K. office, on preventing the passage of legislation that would allow “selfies” to be used as passport photos. Similar legislation has been proposed in the U.S. and other countries.

• Provide knowledge and expertise, so the photography businesses can grow and thrive

PMA is poised to become the “go-to” resource for any and all photo industry related information. To accomplish this, we are implementing a new, online “knowledge hub” that will offer not only all the valuable content you’re used to finding in PMA Newsline, PMA Magazine, and on the PMA Podcast, but also analyst insights, resources and tools for your business, trend data, and marketing research information and reports from leading industry research firms, and more.

In addition, we are launching a new PMA website that will allow you to connect with the PMA communities you are most interested in. Here you will be able to interact with your colleagues across the entire spectrum of the imaging industry, and in any segment that interests you.

The greatest opportunity for learning and interaction will always be in-person events. PMA is currently planning the first of our next-generation photo business and technology summits, which will take place this fall in California.

• Create, support and promote industry-related guidelines and conventions

PMA will develop common conventions and guidelines that allow open APIs, standards and “future proof” interoperability to remove the barriers to greater consumer action around photo products and services.

In addition, PMA is further developing certification programs and best practice guidelines, as well as a ”train the trainer” program to help you and your staff become an education source for consumers. These will provide significant points of differentiation from your competitors, help you create greater passion for photography in your community, and give your business the edge it needs to grow to higher and higher levels of success.

As you can see, with these initiatives now in place, your PMA staff is already hard at work developing practical tools, resources and events to deliver on the promise they hold. We will continue to expand on these initial objectives as the needs of our members evolve.

We are so excited for the future, and we thank you for your enduring support.

Georgia McCabe         &      Gaby Mullinax
PMA CEO                            PMA President

On the PMA Podcast: Big prints are affordable at Jondo

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Jenny-Coulston-JONDO

Jenny Coulton literally grew up in the photo printing business: she worked at Jondo after class during high school. She left to go to college — and then returned as the company’s marketing director.

On this episode of the PMA podcast, Coulton talks about the primary marketing challenge facing everyone in the photo printing business: raising awareness of the high-quality low-price products the industry now offers.

You can download the audio episode or subscribe to the podcast here.

Or you can tune in now with the player below.

On the PMA Podcast: Getting your best customers to Print More

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haim ariav

What are the secrets to increasing your print revenues?
In this episode of the PMA Podcast, Haim Ariav, the founder and business manager of Glossy Finish by Lifetouch, explains how key tactics — such as targeting the best customers, providing complete products, and making the sale at the event where emotions are running high — have made his business more profitable.

You can download the audio episode or subscribe to the podcast here.

Or you can tune in now with the player below.

PMA CEO Georgia McCabe responds to Bloomberg Business “Fastest-Fading Business” article

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GM-09-CA2_0136

PMA CEO Georgia McCabe

It is interesting that on April 30, Bloomberg Business posted an article entitled Twilight of One-Hour Photo, America’s Fastest-Fading Business. Of course, those of us who live in the photo business know that far from being, dead, consumers today are taking more pictures than ever before. In fact, just last year consumers captured and shared more than 10 times the number of personal images than were taken at the peak of the analog photo business, back in the early 1990s. Clearly the consumer’s “love for photography” today is stronger than ever. Personally, I believe that the opportunities in photo are actually greater now than they were back in the late 1800s, when George Eastman first evangelized photography to the mass market. Eastman had to educate the consumer about the value of personal photography. Today, that is a given – and photography pervades all aspects of everyday life. Posted personal images are by far the largest source of traffic in the exploding world of social media. Our challenge is to make it possible for consumers to enjoy connected photography and at the same time, preserve and celebrate their special images with a wide variety of exciting digital photo output products. The problem has been that while many of the new players in digital photography understand the tremendous appeal of personal imaging, they often have little knowledge or concern for the responsibility of capturing and storing those most important moments of everyday life. That is what real consumer photography is all about.

But don’t just take my word for it; here are excerpts resulting from discussions with knowledgeable imaging industry analysts.

Hans Hartman, President of Suite 48 Analytics and Chair of Mobile Photo Connect, sums it up rather succinctly:

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Hans Hartman

Really it’s quite simple:

  • Thanks to smartphones…people take more photos than ever before
  • Thanks to smartphones…people are engaged in photography at an earlier age than ever before
  • When offered innovative photo products and easy apps, smartphone photographers often order photo products. Major photo retailers, such as Shutterfly and Walgreens in the US, and CeWe and Photobox in Europe, all report double digit percentages of their orders coming from…smartphone users!

Frank Baillargeon, President of F/22 Consultants offers his own unique take:

Frank Baillargeon

Frank Baillargeon

We are living at a time during which mass market photography has gone from the occasional (8-10 times per year) purchase of a roll of film and a bag of prints, for those with the means, to an ever-present part of the lives of virtually every adult on the planet. Photo is central to the business models of the new titans of enterprise (Facebook, Google, Apple, Yahoo, Microsoft, Amazon, etc.). As consumers, we capture with ease and no cost, share instantly with family and friends, edit creatively as we choose, (increasingly and most importantly) save and organize our precious images in the cloud to enable us to create and order fabulous new products from online retailers, and, yes, from tens of thousands of traditional brick and mortar photo retailers as well.

And then there is this statement, from Vint Cerf, Google VP and “father of the internet” (really!):

Vint Cerf of Google

Vint Cerf of Google

Our life, our memories, our most cherished family photographs increasingly exist as bits of

information – on our hard drives or in ‘the cloud.’ But as technology moves on, they risk being lost in the wake of an accelerating digital revolution.

I worry a great deal about that, you and I are experiencing things like this. Old formats of documents that we’ve created or presentations may not be readable by the latest version of the software because backwards compatibility is not always guaranteed.

And so what can happen over time is that even if we accumulate vast archives of digital content, we may not actually know what it is or where to find it.

Photo printing is far from dead. It is staging an exciting rebirth, born on crests of both product and manufacturing innovation, advances in mobile technology, and software innovations that connect us instantly and intuitively with create and order capabilities directly from our connected devices to product solutions from scores of retailers, both online and in-store. Simply stated – printed photo output matters to all of us. Not the bag of prints that were our only way to preserve and share, but exciting and valuable new products that tell and preserve our stories in a richer, more personalized fashion. The end of film processing is hardly the end of the photo output story. It was simply an important chapter in the continuing effort to preserve and share what’s most important to all of us.

As Mark Twain so aptly said, “the reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.” Those of us who have spent our careers in photography refuse to break our sacred pact with the consumer…this is a challenge that we at PMA understand well, and intend to continue to make good on.

Georgia McCabe

CEO, PMA

PMA’s new National Photo Month site offers free promotional materials, photo contest and much more

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NationalPhotoMonth_FINAL-04We have some exciting news to share. We have launched a compelling new website to promote May, which is, of course, National Photo Month!

At this site, natlphotomonth.org, you will find a constantly-growing supply of free tools, marketing tips, and downloadable marketing content for you to use to promote your business all throughout the month. They include National Photo Month logos, customizable posters and signs, and ready-to-use photo tweets and social media posts. (While this is a US-based campaign, there are  also tools here that can be used to inspire photo consumers worldwide, and to promote photography year-round.)

In addition, the site offers a wealth of information for your customers, and a photo contest with very valuable prize packages – people can enter at either the professional or hobbyist level.

There are many prize packages, including the Grand Prize in the professional category: an Apple iPhone 6 Plus, a Fujifilm X-T1 Mirrorless ILC, and a Focus Pyramid Autofocus Lens Calibration Tool. The Grand Prize in the consumer category includes: an Apple MacBook Pro 13″ – Core i5, 4GB RAM, 500GB HD; a Canon Rebel T6i DSLR; a Tamron 16-300mm f/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZD Macro lens; and a 20×30 Canvas Certificate from MailPix.com.

There are many, many other impressive prizes, too. We’d like to offer a big thank you to our wonderful contributors, who have donated very generously to support the contest and the website. The growing list includes:

  • Collages.net
  • Creative Live
  • Design Frames
  • Fujifilm
  • Fullerton Photo
  • GoPro
  • H&H Color Lab
  • Cristina Photography Tools
  • LumiQuest
  • Macphun
  • MailPix
  • Nationwide Studios
  • Nikon
  • Panasonic
  • Precision Camera
  • Sony
  • Sunpak
  • SYNC
  • Tamron
  • Teddy Bear Portraits
  • ToCAD
  • WinkFlash

We encourage you to join with us, and all of our sponsors, in promoting photography, your business, and National Photo Month! Be sure to come back to the site often, and encourage your customers to do so too, because new resources are being added all the time. Also, be sure to visit and like our new Celebrate Photos Facebook page.

Hashtags:

#celebratephotos

#nationalphotomonth

On the PMA Podcast: Bright future for retail

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lucinda daltonWhen new people enter a field, they don’t always know what can’t be done — so they charge forward proving the establishment wrong. That’s been the history of Digital Camera Warehouse, now with four Australian super store locations. While many are retracting their retail footprint in favor of e-commerce Digital Camera Warehouse is doubling down on their physical store locations.

On this episode of the PMA Podcast, Bill McCurry asks Lucinda Dalton how and why she sees a bright future for retail and specifically for Digital Camera Warehouse as it expands its footprint and offerings in Australia. With a common sense approach, Lucinda and her team are finding commitment pays off.
You can download the audio episode or subscribe to the podcast here.

Or you can tune in now with the player below.

On the PMA Podcast: Frank Baillargeon to deliver more market research

Frank Baillargeon

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Frank Baillargeon of F/22 Consulting and Iconic Idaho has enjoyed a long career in the photo industry, and now he’s bringing that experience to help his fellow PMA members.

A consultant for many years, he is working with other industry analysts to bring PMA an aggregated resource for the latest market research.

In this episode of the PMA Podcast, Frank talks about how he got started in photography at Kodak, his varied career, and what he’ll be launching soon for PMA.

You can download the audio episode or subscribe to the podcast here.

Or you can tune in now with the player below.

On the PMA Podcast: Coaching for Warriors

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Jeffrey Shaw

Jeffrey Shaw is a business coach, the host of Creative Warriors podcast —  and a photographer.

He works with entrepreneurs who are marketing themselves, and their talents. His core message: they must have a clear direction, know what they stand for, develop a unique branding message, and effectively communicate it.

On this episode of the PMA Podcast, Jeffrey shares advice on “knowing your story,” how to diversify your business, and overcoming the challenges that might stand in your way.

You can download the audio episode or subscribe to the podcast here.

Or you can tune in now with the player below.

The new issue of PMA Magazine is here

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The new issue of spreadsjpg-Q1PMA Magazine — Connecting the Imaging Communities is here! In this issue, meet PMA’s new leaders, President Gaby Mullinax and CEO Georgia McCabe, and learn about Coulter, PMA’s new management team. You will also see the excitement of the PMA 2015 Conferences in our story of the event in pictures.

Also in this issue: