Chari Pack founded Persnickety Prints in 2010 when other photo printing stores were closing. Everything was going digital; dark rooms seemed like the dark ages. But she had a vision and knew she could solve a problem for her target customers who want tangible photo keepsakes and art, but don’t know how to get the quality that will make their memories last forever.
Chari charged ahead and opened a storefront in Orem, Utah where she and her team do something rare in today’s photo world: convert digital photo files into digital negatives and process them like film—dark rooms and all. The result is a professional-quality photo print you can’t get from a Walgreens kiosk.
By the third year in business, Persnickety Prints grew 153 percent and grossed over a million dollars in revenue. Today they ship prints to customers worldwide and have earned a loyal, passionate following among professional photographers, scrapbooking hobbyists, and parents who want to bring their snapshots to life. Chari attributes this success to customer referral and social media, where she uses Adobe Spark to kick out graphics and videos aimed at teaching her followers how to make the most of their memories, whether that’s offering iPhoneography tips or communicating her brand’s value.
Now Chari’s parlaying Persnickety’s success into a new brand, Persnickety Box, a smartphone app and monthly subscription service that delivers photo keepsakes every month directly from the customer’s smartphone camera roll. “It’s like Birchbox for your memories combined with the ease of Tinder,” she says.
And she’s taking Adobe Spark with premium features with her to efficiently and effectively create the branded marketing collateral needed to launch her new offering. She gave us an inside look at her marketing plan and let us in on how she amplifies the Persnickety brand on social media.
Building Buzz with Spark
Chari has ambitious goals for her new brand: 3,000 sign ups in the first 60 days after launch. So her marketing plan includes teaser content to drive early sign ups, pre-launch communications for her network of bloggers and supporters who can help her spread the word, and social media posts and flyers that continue to drive pre-registrations. Let’s take a look at her winning marketing content:
This video accomplishes two things: It introduces Chari’s new business, leveraging its distinct, but complementary brand elements, and tells her most engaged followers about what’s to come with the goal of engaging her current customers and generating early sign-ups. We get a quick glimpse of the product (shot on an iPhone), but much more time is devoted to setting up the problem Persnickety Box seeks to solve (accomplished with savvy use of stock assets). Just three sentences and Persnickety Box’s tagline efficiently communicate problem and solution.
Explainer Video with Customer Testimonial
A short, 30-second teaser works great on Instagram, but for communicating with bloggers and her devoted customers, Chari wanted something a bit more in depth and a bit more personal. This extended version leverages the same footage from the trailer video, but also features a customer testimonial and Chari on camera. Shoot once and easily slice up your iPhone footage into various video stories to maximize productivity.
“Spark Video is the simplest video editor we’ve ever used! With the premium features, we can customize the look and feel to match our brand. That’s huge for us.”
Electronic Press Kit
The videos posted to her social accounts help Chari communicate to many, but she also knows that she needs to ask her close network to help amplify her news. This is called “broadcast diffusion,” which we’ve covered before on this blog. Chari has built close partnerships with bloggers and influencers in the Utah area–many of which are happy customers. Spark Page allows Chari to send her supporters everything they need to cover Persnickety Box’s launch in one slick landing page. Updating the Page with any new assets or information will automatically update the link you share with press or your supporters. Spark Page’s new branded themes allow you to make the press kit look and feel like your brand.
Launch Party Invitation
Live events have helped Chari develop close relationships with influencers, bloggers, and customers. Though they may require a lot of work, trade shows, parties, and blogger meet-ups are integral to the Persnickety brand. And Spark Post helps getting an event off the ground a little easier.
Social Media Posts
In listening to our customers and interacting with them directly on a daily basis, we found that digital imaging continues to be a frustrating endeavor for the majority. People still want tangible prints that will last … welcome to Persnickety Box! #tellyourstory #persnicketybox (made with #adobespark)
Given the short lifespan each Instagram post or Tweet enjoys, it’s important to have lots of creative to cycle through. This is easy with Spark Post. In fact, once you upload your brand elements, Spark auto-generates templates you can easily modify and duplicate for any social network. Though these graphics are instantly recognizable and unified through branded elements, Chari can keep her message fresh and inspiring by easily modifying the text and images used. Or she can brand-ify any design template on the Post inspiration wall with one tap.
An Analog Brand Born From Social Media
Any good content marketing strategy—and business idea for that matter—starts with an understanding of your customer. For Chari, research for her new brand began on social media, her main channel for interacting with and getting to know her customers.
“In listening to our customers and interacting with them directly in our store and on social, we found that digital imaging is frustrating for them to understand, but people still want tangible prints,” Chari says. “Social media is where we tell the Persnickety story, but it’s also where we gather inspiration and information that powers our business.”
Even the 4×4 prints that get delivered each month resemble the kind of images people are sharing on social media and the UI of the app reflects how people are using their phones to do everything from share memories to shop to snag dates.
How Persnickety Wins on Social
Though rooted in of-the-moment storytelling and shopping, Chari tugs on timeless and universal emotions in order to position her brand. This step is an essential part of defining your brand’s placement in the market and in customers’ lives. “We have an emotional business. We print people’s art. What they create,” says Chari. “So our biggest win is when our customers give us positive feedback.”
“We’re big on storytelling—on telling our own and helping our customers do the same. So we’ve had a hard time outsourcing social media—it just never felt authentic or true to me, which is why I love Spark and now its premium features—it helps us stay true to our brand and helps us keep the creation and storytelling in-house.”
Persnickety Prints earns customer loyalty by being obsessed—persnickety—about quality and social media is where they amplify customer testimonials, but Chari makes sure she isn’t selling all the time. Most of what she pushes to Instagram and the Persnickety blog has little to do with touting sales and everything to do making memories that last forever. Chari’s developed a strong brand identity by defining the emotional zen behind her business that influences everything from an Instagram post to a video advertisement. And that is where the true brand magic happens.
Ready to make your business stand out? Create brand magic with Adobe Spark!