Prep for Success with PhotoDay’s Picture Day Checklist

Written by
Emiley Jones
February 13, 2024

You booked your next job, the contract is signed, and it’s time to prep for the most exciting part: picture day. If this is your first big volume job, try not to feel overwhelmed—no matter your job count, mastering the game of efficiency is an ongoing work in progress for every business.

In the wise words of Benjamin Franklin, "By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail." But don’t worry! PhotoDay has your back with a handy interactive picture day checklist. No frills, no fuss—just a step-by-step guide to ensure you nail your next job.

Our downloadable guide starts when you book the job and keeps you on track through publishing and selling. Go ahead and download the checklist, and keep reading to explore each of the nine steps in greater detail!

➡️ Download Picture Day Checklist ⬅️

Step 1: When the Job is Booked

Celebrate the win, and now let’s get you prepped for success. First up: setting up the job in your PhotoDay Studio Panel.

Creating a job in PhotoDay is easy and intuitive, but we also offer a rich inventory of walkthrough guides, support articles, and informative webinars that teach you everything you need to know in just a few clicks.

When setting up your job, you’ll select your gallery type and add important details like the job name, logo (if you have it), and picture day date. You’ll also set up your price sheet, AdvancePay, and any special offers. PhotoDay automates these gallery promotions for you, including header banners when a customer is viewing photos in the gallery.

Building your job is one of the more detail-oriented steps in the process, but with our intuitive platform, you’ll breeze through it in no time! 

Step 2: Four Weeks Before Picture Day

Communication is key when it comes to online selling! Your customers will need to know how to access their gallery before they can order their photos. It’s never too early to prepare your customer communication plan and marketing materials. 

First, decide how you’d like to notify parents and the organization that picture day is approaching, then create the items you’ll need to promote any specials and execute your communication plan.

Consider all the channels your studio will utilize and create materials for each. Here are some ideas for digital and print materials:

  • Email flyers
  • Social media graphics
  • Printed flyers
  • Posters
  • Reminder cards 

Thanks to online selling, the days of paper order forms are in the past, so feel free to get creative with your printed marketing materials. PhotoDay users can take advantage of our integrated marketing kit full of customizable templates for banners, posters, business cards, social media graphics, and more!

Step 3: Three Weeks Before Picture Day

This is the perfect time to gather any data needed for a smooth and successful picture day. 

If you’re using PhotoDay’s public or group galleries, look into gathering your customers’ email addresses for marketing purposes and subject counts for scheduling and staffing purposes. Additional data such as team, group, or class names will also help if you use tags to organize your gallery. 

If you’re using PhotoDay’s private galleries, you’ll need some subject data to match photos with individuals using PhotoDay Capture and FaceFind. At a minimum, you should have each subject’s first and last name, but you could also include up to 3 emails per subject, team, group, or class names, and more. Compile this data into a CSV file and upload it to your job. Feel free to follow one of our step-by-step guides or articles for information on optimizing, uploading, and mapping your subject data CSV file. Once everything is set up, subjects will automatically match with their photos!

Step 4: Two Weeks Before Picture Day

Picture day is getting close, so it's time to get your parents and organization excited!

Distribute and display the materials you created in step two, use the email addresses you gathered to send out marketing flyers, and hang your posters on location so everyone knows picture day is coming soon. You can also start promoting the upcoming picture day on your social channels and ask the organization to do the same.

Step 5: One Week Before Picture Day

It’s almost here! Ensure parents know the different ways they can opt into gallery updates and order pictures and photo gifts when the gallery is published. Encourage them to text their access code to 90738 and/or subscribe to notifications in the gallery to stay in the know. Remember, if you're encouraging parents to purchase an AdvancePay credit, now is the time to switch your gallery status from Draft to AdvancePay!

Send out an email flyer with any last-minute information and updates, including a time-sensitive special offer to drive order urgency.

If the organization didn’t provide you with customer email addresses, ask them to distribute the digital flyers or print flyers on your behalf to ensure everyone knows how to access the photos. Remember, picture day benefits the school, sports league, or dance studio from a fundraising standpoint, so don’t be afraid to ask for help spreading the word.

Step 6: Day Before or Morning of Picture Day

Prepare your staff for a smooth and successful picture day! Communicate the importance of accessing the gallery and subscribing to notifications. With PhotoDay, there are multiple ways to connect to customers:

  • The simplest route is for customers to text their access code to 90738 to sign up for notifications and receive a direct link to the gallery.
  • Customers can also go straight to on their phone, computer, or tablet.
  • No matter how they get there, is the final destination where customers can create an account, access the gallery, purchase AdvancePay Credits, and opt-in for transactional text messages.

Gathering text subscriptions is an ideal way to keep in touch! Customers who have opted in to receive SMS notifications will be the first to know when their photos are published and ready to order. PhotoDay also offers pre-built SMS campaigns studios can request to send to anyone who opted-in to a gallery less than a year old. 

Step 7: Picture Day

It’s finally here! Ensure you have all the gear you need (and backups!), plus onsite promotional materials like banners, signs, and reminder cards with the gallery’s access code.

Take advantage of the in-person opportunity to market and sell while photos are still fresh in parents’ minds. For example, you could advertise a “Today Only!” offer for anyone who purchases an AdvancePay Credit onsite.

Get to your location as early as you need to set up your equipment and marketing displays. PhotoDay and Capture make check-in a breeze, giving you and your staff extra time to interact with your subjects, talk up your promotions with parents, and ensure you can answer all their questions about your product offerings.

The most important thing to remember on picture day is to have fun! This is why you started your volume photography studio in the first place, so never lose sight of that.

Step 8: After Picture Day

You had a successful picture day—breathe a sigh of relief and treat yourself to some tacos!

Now it’s time to level up your beautiful photos with post-processing and editing so you can upload them to your galleries and start selling.

PhotoDay has multiple tools to simplify and automate post-processing. You can use Knockouts to extract subjects from backgrounds to use for composites or to add custom backgrounds. Our AI-driven Color Correction service adjusts exposure, contrast, white balance, and gamma faster than ever. These services are available right within your PhotoDay job, making it even easier to upload final photos into the customer gallery. 

Once the photos are published, watch the sales come rolling in! All customers subscribed to the gallery will automatically receive a text message letting them know their photos are ready. You and the organization can also send out emails and post on social channels to make sure you reach everyone.

Step 9: After Publishing

Don’t stop marketing once the images are published! To encourage sales, continue to drive awareness and sales opportunities by re-marketing the gallery at ideal times.

PhotoDay makes continuous promotion of your galleries a breeze with automated text campaigns and manual email marketing flyers. You can use these resources to communicate with your customers about gallery expiration, early bird prices, and flash sale offers, which will help boost sales and AOV! 

PhotoDay also offers unlimited gallery storage, so you can use these same sales techniques to re-market previously expired galleries for seasonal and holiday promotions. Check out the following blogs for more ideas and instructions on creating special offers: Maximizing Sales in Volume Photography: A Guide to Products, Pricing, and Promotions and Driving Incremental Volume Photography Revenue Through Seasonal Strategies.

Picture day is an exciting, important event for the subjects, families, and organizations involved, and adopting a game plan for your studio minimizes stress, de-escalates surprises, and ultimately leads to a more enjoyable experience for everyone involved.

Think of this checklist as a roadmap that you can adapt to the needs of your studio and each specific job. Remember to keep it flexible if the timelines don’t line up perfectly—while our guide starts up to four weeks before picture day, your studio might only have a few weeks’ notice. 

You’ll also discover entirely new ways to build your own efficiencies, like creating your marketing materials when you set up the job in your studio so that you will be prepared to send them out when the time is right. Let this checklist be an adjustable guide rather than a rigid rulebook. 

The intuitiveness of PhotoDay and all the practice you’ll get as you book more and more jobs will make executing these picture day plans comfortable and stress-free!

➡️ Download Picture Day Checklist ⬅️

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