Top Digital Imaging Questions Asked by Consumers And How You May Want...

Top Digital Imaging Questions Asked by Consumers And How You May Want To Answer Them


They have the cameras, seem to know how to use them and at last check, were busy clicking away…just like they have always done. Yet, today’s digital imaging consumers still seem to have a bushel full of questions with regard to this still relatively new way to capture memories. While we don’t profess to having all the answers, we did throw a few of the more perplexing questions your customers are asking out to a wide variety of imaging industry folks and came up with what we feel are some pretty solid answers.

How do I get prints from my camera?

“The same way you always did.” That is simply the best possible answer to this question. This issue has been made far too complicated for many of today’s consumers and all they have to do is drop off the card or other media they have transferred the images to and come back to pick up the images later…period. Once they understand this they can be exposed to your self-serve kiosk or online services but making them aware that nothing has really changed makes the most sense to most of the folks we chatted with.

How many megapixels do I need?

Thankfully, the industry appears to be moving away from the megapixel race and concentrating more on many of the new and exciting features that are showing up on consumer-level digicams. Amen. When this question is asked however, the best thing to discuss is what their shooting habits will likely be. If the camera will only be used to capture 4×6-inch snapshots, they are best paired with a 3-4MP model. If the user indicates an interest in eventually making 8×10 and larger prints the 5MP and up point-and-shoots may be a better match. The demographic research we are privy to suggests your younger customers will be best suited with the 3-4MP entry-level models while the Gen Xers and beyond, who may capturing images of their children or life’s more important events, will be more likely to want enlargements.

Can I get a large print from my digital camera?

Again, the best bet here is to simply explain, “Yes you can, just like you always could.” Only now it’s even easier. No more searching for negatives, simply copy the images over you want enlarged and indicate the size. The confusion comes in when you have a customer who has a 1MP image they want enlarged to 16×20. Explaining what various megapixel counts can yield on the print side at the time of the digicam sale can help solve this problem.

Can I make prints from this card more than once?

Explain that they can, of course, but that they are far better off clearing that card for use again and backing the images up to another media or on their computer’s hard drive. If they appear most comfortable storing their images on the card, suggest they purchase a less expensive “Shoot-and-Store” card like the ones offered by SanDisk

What do you mean “format the card”?

For the most part, your customers won’t have to worry about this as the card they place in the camera will work automatically. When an instance arises when they are asked to format the card just tell them to make sure it is card that has no images on it (formatting the card will erase those images) and to simply follow the instructions that pop up on the cameras LCD screen. There are those that feel a media card should be formatted after every download and that simply deleting the images off the card isn’t good for the card long-term. If, or any reason, a card become corrupted, a reformatting the card will usually get it working again.

Will the pictures look the same if I put these files on a CD?

Apparently many imaging retailers are running across customers who believe the images initially captured on the media card are the “originals” and any copies made will mean the files become degredated with each copy made. Simply assuring them that the files being copied to a CD or any other media for that matter are just as robust and will produce prints, “just as beautiful as the ones on the card” will alay those fears. Also let them know to clear the media card as soon as they make copies on their hard drives or other removable media (CD, DVD, thumbdrive, etc.)

Will a CD last as long as a negative? What if it breaks?

It will if it is properly taken care of. Alert your customers to the fact that they need to take good care of today’s various digital media – keeping them encased in plastic and safely stored. Most of your customers didn’t really take very good care of their negatives either so this certainly isn’t a new problem.

Do I need a new media card once this one is full?

Again, the simply answer is the best one here…no, you don’t. Explaining that getting those images off the card and backed up not only makes them safer, it will make it easier to get them printed and get you (the consumer) up and shooting again for the next big picture-taking event in your life.

And that’s good news for all of us.

Any questions?