Having entered the press market in 2006, Coleman says it is difficult to determine a shift in trends from normal growth-as their press product line is still in its infancy. That said, Miller's is seeing an increased percentage of customers ordering books. "During any given week, over 70% of our press orders are for books," he says. "Initially the majority had a wedding or senior theme. Customers are now figuring out creative ways to utilize our press product line," he explains. Coleman says that as customers create new uses for PhotoBooks, Miller's shares these ideas with their other customers via e-mail blasts, newsletters, and print ads.
Miller's is focusing its efforts on making the PhotoBook ordering process as easy as possible for its customers. "Our customers are good about providing feedback," says Coleman. The feedback is invaluable to the company, as they make improvements. "Based on customer feedback this past year, we have enhanced the ability to customize books," he adds.
Album company GraphiStudio's primary focus has been servicing the wedding photographer. According to Maureen Neises, director, North America, "Over the last year we have seen a rapid increase in other book applications such as portfolio, family, bar and bat mitzvahs, baby, commercial and special event books." She adds, "Within the last year, GraphiStudio has seen a trend in multiple volume book sales for engagement and wedding books. The demand for parent book copies for extended family members and customized designs for parent books have also influenced these trends."
The company has introduced a number of new book sizes to accommodate these market trends. Some of the new items include books with smaller page quantities (10 to 100 pages); and new opening book sizes starting at 4x5 and 6x8. Neises says GraphiStudio has also seen a trend in landscape book requests. "Specific design trends have influenced the introduction of our landscape book. This format has appealed to both commercial and landscape photographers for the extended use of the page," she explains.
"Recent technology in our production facility has allowed for cover options to evolve with a seamless appearance, specifically the transparent Crystal Glance cover. Other new additions for cover options have been based on consumer preferences to offer more trend forward options in the marketplace. Examples include the metallic varnish and crystal glance covers. Other influences include the demand for more personalization options on the cover," she concludes.