I was fortunate to attend the annual Independent Photo Imagers (IPI) Members’ Retreat & Supplying Partner Trade Show, held in Las Vegas during the week of June 21, and was very impressed and inspired with a national marketing program this industry group is rolling out for its members.
It’s important that printing at retail make a comeback for the good of our industry. What IPI has done—with the help of “Giving Images,” a partnership that includes industry icons Bob Hanson and Gaby Mullinax—is provide its members with a complete, turnkey marketing components/campaign that will enable them to become serious marketers over the next 24 months. The goal is for IPI members and specialty dealers to portray their unique offerings in a multitiered effort designed to grow their print and photo gifting business.
“The business has changed,” remarked Hanson. “We now have to entice customers to walk into our stores. It’s no longer the case where they have to come in—you have to make them want to come in.”
“We’re shaking up the industry and today we’re providing an innovative turnkey solution for all IPI members to take advantage of. With the creativity from both of our staffs, Bob and I feel that Giving Images has developed a program unlike any in the photo specialty space,” added Gaby Mullinax, a Giving Images partner and winner of the PMA Custom Photo Gift Promotion competition. “Our members will see an immediate enhancement to their revenues by utilizing this program.”
The program includes an array of marketing tools, including customizable newsletters, HTML e-mail campaigns, innovative greeting card templates (that are awesome) and “Marketing Sparkle,” which includes additional enhancements, such as marketing tips, suggested Facebook postings and display ideas.
Giving Images also provides a poignant in-store video that will enable IPI members to market their array of greeting card templates, both seasonal (Thanksgiving, Halloween, holidays) and annual (birth announcements, family announcements). It’s an innovative way to ramp up marketing efforts for IPI members.
“I believe now that the growth of this business is only limited by our own imaginations,” said Mullinax, as she ended her presentation.
Fujifilm has agreed to underwrite over 80 percent of the first year’s solution in the marketing program to users of Fujifilm North America products. “We can’t thank Bing Liem and the folks at Fujifilm enough for seeing the value of this program,” said Brent Bowyer, executive director of IPI, who then led the room in a standing ovation.
Independent Photo Imagers (IPI) is North America’s largest purchasing cooperative for service specialty retailers, with over 500 members and in excess of 750 storefront locations worldwide. ipiphoto.com