Magazine Article


Marketing Ideas: Great Concepts That Work

Gary Grinaker’s full color postcards
The Photo Express’ Gary Grinaker’s full color postcards are a great way to get out his marketing message.
David Guidry—Lakeside’s own brand of hot sauce
A hot idea from Lakeside Camera & Imaging’s David Guidry—Lakeside’s own brand of hot sauce.

Our ARGHH! List - Make It AHHH! (with apologies to Mr. McCurry) This idea is courtesy of the author of this article, Chris Lydle, of Chris’ Camera Center in Aiken, SC (

“It’s New Year’s Day and I’m making a list right now of what went wrong, and of what items we ran out of during December, in the fond hope that next year we won’t make the same mistakes. We’ve got one of those big calendars from Staples and this list is getting taped onto the page for next November:

“We always run out of AA NiMH battery chargers…buy more next year, and schedule delivery around Pearl Harbor Day. The entry level and entry level +1 digital cameras are the ones we run out of. Guess what—we did it again! Buy more next year.”

“Increase the frequency of lab inventories, so we don’t run out of a proprietary chemical product at the worst possible time. Find an alternate source of supply for all of the mission-critical items.”

“Buy more greeting card envelopes! We sold far more cards this year than in the past, and came close to running out.” “Everybody—including the boss—has to have a day off every week. When you’re exhausted, you make stupid, costly mistakes.”

Get Out of Your Comfort Zone! Courtesy of Michael St Germain, of Concord Camera Store, located in Concord, NH (

“Getting out of your comfort zone and visiting retailers who are not photo based can be highly rewarding. One suggestion is to visit a Pottery Barn store and examine the display in their frame department. The selection is very filtered in both colors and style but they make it up by providing a great selection of matting options. The store also provides the customer with a great educational component that we as photo retailers should emulate.”

“I recommend that photo retailers purchase a copy of “Pottery Barn Photos” for $14.95 and start finding new ways for our customers to start using and displaying their photos. Making displays and educating customers that photographs can make a great decor statement, which is a really inexpensive option. The ideas can only help with more prints being ordered and improving traffic.”

Let the Post Office Know How Good Your Passport Photos Are. This idea comes from Howard Copeland of Scott Camera and Photography, in Peekskill, NY – (914 737-4081)

“Our store does a good job with passport photos. One way we have helped is to let the post office know how good the photos can be. We have visited the post office and talked to the employees.”

“Since our pictures come out so well, the post office sends people to us, often with pictures in hand taken at CVS or Wal-Mart. And when the post office got a camera to take their own photos, they gave up and sent the camera back because they couldn’t make them as good as ours.

“One customer who didn’t go to the post office came in here after his discount store photos were sent in directly—not after being checked at the post office—and six weeks later his papers were returned with “photos unacceptable.”

Make Sure Your Customers Get Their Memory Cards Back! This concept is from Karl Kantrowitz, of Village Camera and Video, in South Orange, NJ – (973-763-6450)

“Quite often my customers leave their memory card with me to print photos or burn to CD.”