The trends, the issues, and productive business
Challenge #1: Inspiring Consumers To Print
Interesting advice and comments from CLN
by Nancy Nally and Peggy Braden (October 22, 2007)
(Note: The Sept. 17 edition of CLN included
"Stop Worrying about Digital Scrapbooking... And worry about
printing photos instead," by independent retailer Sharon Cooke.
owner of Scrapbook Clubhouse in Westbrook, CT. The thoughtful,
provocative article inspired the following reactions. To read
Sharon's article, click on the title in the right-hand column.)
How Scrapbook Retailers Can Encourage Photo Printing, by
Sharon Cooke makes an excellent point. Scrapbooking as an
industry is taking a financial hit from the growth of digital
photography. There isn't a built-in customer base anymore of people
who are generating stacks of pictures that they are looking for
"something to do with".
Also, the sheer volume of photographs that people generate with
their digital cameras can intimidate people from scrapbooking their
photos because the task seems so huge. MSNBC.com actually ran an
article recently raising the subject of whether we are taking too
many pictures because of digital cameras. (www.msnbc.msn.com/id/20763864).
Storeowners who want to increase their customer base need to
encourage more printing of digital photos, and entice people who do
print their photos to visit scrapbook stores. There are several ways
that retailers can try to do this.
1. Offer in-store printing. This service can be offered
through a complex photo kiosk or simple computer and printer.
However it is done, allowing on-site printing will facilitate
immediate scrapbooking of photographs. Customers can enter the store
for a crop carrying their basic tools and a camera card or photo CD,
print their pictures, purchase their supplies, and create a page on
2. Facilitate online ordering. A computer with Internet
access and an attached universal card reader can serve as a
"kiosk" from which store customers can place photo orders.
While they are in the store, customers can pre-plan scrapbook pages
for their latest digital photos, buy the supplies, and order the
prints they will need to complete the pages. This system could even
earn money for the store, since major online photo services such as
Shutterfly and Snapfish offer affiliate programs.
3. Partner with a local photo lab. Local photo labs are also
feeling the pinch of people not printing their photos. Partner with
one to drive traffic (and business) back and forth between the two
stores. Offer coupons with a purchase at one that is good off of a
purchase at the other. Partner on advertising. Offer drop off and
pick up for the photo lab at the scrapbook store. Team up and get
This might well be the biggest challenge that the industry has
faced since the scrapbooking boom started. Those who don't adjust to
the changing market won't be in it very long. It's a bad lesson to
learn the hard way.
(Note: Nancy also reported on the Creating Keepsakes
Hall of Fame controversy. To read her report, visit her blog at www.scrapbookupdate.com/scrapnancy/2007/10/controversy-sur.html.
She has written numerous articles on scrapbooking for various
publications, including CLN, Creative TECHniques, Scrapbook
Business, and DesignerZine. Nancy can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.)
Storing Photos on a Computer Is The Least of the Dangers, by
Peggy Braden, Unique Surroundings
I wholeheartedly agree with Sharon, and I am neither in scrapbook
retail nor am I a scrapbooker myself. I am a custom framer who
specializes in "making your memories last."© I design and
custom build shadowboxes to preserve the precious memories of my
The fact that our photos are not safe on our computers is a
no-brainer to those of us who work day in and day out with
technology. However, even the executive administrator who uses a
computer daily hasn't the slightest clue of the inner workings of
the technology. I would venture to guess that 98% of those using
computers daily have no conception of how their computer saves or
loses their important photos.
I believe that the responsibility to inform falls to the computer
manufacturing sector which has given the public a false sense of
security on many issues involving their products. Most consumers
have no grasp of the dangers of the Internet for both children and
adults – computer fraud and identity theft, lottery scams,
unsecured banking, and an entire list of other dangers aren't
mentioned in the advertising for a new system.
Parent's will turn their children loose on the Internet and not
give it a second thought, and yet we still have a rating system for
movies to attempt to protect our children and warn parents of the
content. But kids can pull up a porn site on their laptop with no
(It happened to me recently when searching for instructions to
build a Corn Hole game of all things. I don't have a prudish bone in
my body, yet I was totally disgusted.)
I believe the public as a whole was so enamored with computers
when they first became widely available that they let the computer
manufacturing industry get away with not warning them of the
negatives and dangers.
I agree that all of our photo's are in danger of being lost when
stored on a computer, but I believe this is the least of many more
important issue's vital to our safety and society as a whole. Is it
too late to hold the industry accountable? We will probably never
know as no one is willing to take them on. (Peggy can be contacted
(Note: IS inspiring consumers to print their photos a
serious challenge for retailers? If so, any suggestions? Email your
thoughts to CLN at email@example.com.)