What does Mom really want?

Written by
Lisa Mallis
January 30, 2018

We conducted a survey using SurveyMonkey and Social Media to figure out how exactly parents of school age children perceive Picture Day. There has been many times I’m with photographers and I hear one or more of the following statements:

“Parents don’t buy pictures anymore. They can just take pictures on their phones.”

“Parents don’t value photography like they used to”

“People don’t spend money on something they don’t need, and no one really needs pictures.”

“Participation is down or low. Picture Day used to be so important to leagues and schools. It just doesn’t seem like a priority.”

“Coaches don’t see the value in participating anymore. They are annoyed and Picture Day has become an inconvenience.”

“Schools just need their images for the Yearbook and ID cards. They don’t really help raise awareness for Picture Day sales as a fundraiser.”

All of the above are simply just assumptions based on circumstance. We went straight to the parents, grandparents, children, coaches, teachers--- to ask the question, "What does Picture Day mean to you?" Watch the video below to discover the answers and make moms happy by signing up for our Mother's Day promo. You can find this promo as well as many others by visiting our 2019 Promos Calendar. Make sure to set it up properly so you can gain the benefits from all the promos we offer throughout the year.


  1. Out of 174 respondents, 92% female and 8% male… 87% of parents (respondents) are between the age of 26-50. There are 261 kids between the ages of 5-17. And 258 of the children are enrolled in Sports & Activities.
  1. We included region, and while most of my following is in the southeast (58%) we did receive various responses from other parts of the country.
  3. 75% of the parents send their children to public school, with 20% in private school and the rest being homeschooled.
  1. Out of all families, 62% with children under the age of 6 attend daycare.
  1. Over 65% of parents have purchased school photos in the past 6 months, 40% spent an average of $21-30 per child, and 31% spent $31-40 per child. Surprisingly, only 49% of parents have purchased sports & activities photos in the last year, with 46% spending an average of $21-30.  Around 37% have spent over $31.
  1. For parents between the ages of 26-50 years old, 18% feel it’s very important for a photographer to offer sibling photos. 100% of parents 18-25 years feel it’s very important.
  1. 33% of all age groups find it very important to order actual prints. 7% don’t feel it’s important at all or order prints. GOOD NEWS! 100% of young parents 18-25 find it moderately important to order prints.
  1. Let’s talk digital files. 35% of all parents find it very important digital files are made available to them. 27% find it moderately important. That’s over half of all respondents. It’s important to note 100% of parents 18-25 find it moderately important. 50% of parents 51-65 don’t find it important at all, or could care less.
  1. 60% of parents between 26-65 do not find it important, or are completely neutral when it comes to ordering photo gifting products. Surprisingly, younger parents 18-25, 100% find it moderately important.
  1. A whopping 100% of the young parents find it VERY important to have multiple poses to choose from. Nearly 60% of parents 26-50 find it important. 40% of the older parents 51-65 don’t really care. Maybe it’s because they’ve never had the option presented to them.
  1. It goes without saying, 86% of parents want the best expression from their child in a photograph. I was really surprised to see 10% of the older parents had no opinion on the matter.
  1. Group and Team photos are important to about 50% of all parents.
  1. 76% of parents answered graphic templates and designs are not very important in the grand scheme of things. This disappoints me, as a lot of work actually goes into the design and functionality from both labs and photographers! Maybe we should change our focus?
  1. Only 16% of parents said they wanted to pay by cash or check via paper form. Maybe they didn’t know they could order online? Everyone else would like to order online in advance, or online after they see their photos.
  1. Most people prefer to be reminded about picture day via text. Since we gave the ability for them to choose more than one option (text, email, paper, FaceBook)... nearly everyone selected all four! What does this mean? Well, I think it means parents just need to be reminded!
  1. Last but not least… the perception of picture day as a fundraiser. A whopping 67% of parents had no idea their photographs are actually a fundraiser. It’s time for a change. #raiseawareness

All in all, our survey told us what a powerful tool in the volume photography market PhotoDay will become. Change is long overdue.

Make moms happy this year by signing up for our Mother's Day promo. You can find this promo as well as many others by visiting our 2019 Promos Calendar. Make sure to set it up properly so you can gain the benefits from all the promos we offer throughout the year.

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