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Photographic British

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news

NOVEMBER 2021 • £5

Putting the photo trade in the picture for over 35 years

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BPI S: NEWONLY

K’S THE U O TRADE PHOT AZINE MAG

Black Friday Magic! Can the bargain hunt retain its sparkle for camera shops and customers? We quiz key retailers, plus offer pointers on making the most of seasonal opportunities

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IN THIS ISSUE…

PHOTO SHOW REPORT

BRIGHT SALES IDEAS

DNP MINILAB NEWS

ACCESSORIES GALORE

For the first time in two-and-ahalf years, the UK photo trade reconvened at the NEC for four days of networking, talks & sales. BPI News weighs up its success

Portable lighting specialist Nanlite has a new distributor and exciting products to share. Plenty here for switched-on retailers to illuminate possible sales with

Expert in dye sub print technology, DNP is offering up an exciting new modular minilab. We learn how it is already helping to turn a profit for retailers

Distributor MAC Group introduces two new Benro travel tripod series plus a plethora of essential video accessories aimed at content creators


PRODUCTS AND SERVICES THAT DISPLAY THE TIPA LOGO IS YOUR ASSURANCE OF THEIR OUTSTANDING

QUALITY, DESIGN AND PERFORMANCE

Every year since 1991 TIPA awards have been given to the best photo, video and imaging products. The TIPA logo is awarded by a large group of respected editors of technical magazines and websites from around the world including the Camera Journal Press Club of Japan.

Visit our website to learn more about our organization and TIPA World Awards www.tipa.com


Editorial | November 2021

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Photographic British

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Published monthly by

EDITOR Gavin Stoker Tel: 020 8274 0578 Tel: 07990 974 367 ART EDITOR Michael O’Connell EDITORIAL ENQUIRIES Please direct all editorial requests, news and press releases to info@bpinews.co.uk ADVERTISING ENQUIRIES Please direct all advertising enquiries and sponsorship opportunities to gavin@bpinews.co.uk Publisher’s Office: 31 New Road, Richmond, Surrey TW10 7HZ. Legacy Media Ltd accept no ultimate responsibility for accurate reproduction of digital artwork created by third parties. Insurance and carriage of products submitted for inclusion in reports rests with the owner. News, data, prices, interviews and opinion are printed in good faith E&OE. Content including advertising artwork created by Legacy Media Ltd or its agents is ©2021 Legacy Media Ltd. ISSN: BPI News (Print) ..................................ISSN 2634-1344 BPI News (Online) ..............................ISSN 2634-1352

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hange by choice is one thing. Being forced into change by external circumstances is another. Most of us who run a business have been affected by the fall-out from both Brexit and Covid-19 occurring simultaneously in our timeline. Whether it’s extra red tape and expense, having to move business meetings to Zoom, or simply Gavin Stoker, find somewhere (or someone) else to Editor supply our stock and deliver our goods – with both of those also increasingly gavin@bpinews.co.uk @GavinStoker costing more due to higher demand and shorter supply – it’s been stressful. Those of us seeking a bit of respite and the illusion of things getting back to normal will, however, have been heartened by the return of The Photography Show. We attended on the Monday and found it comfortably busy, even if we did hear mixed reports and experiences of the other days. The general consensus was, however, that it was great to have an industry-inclusive trade show back on the calendar. We valued catching up with familiar faces in person, some of which we hadn’t seen for two years. And yes, a couple of those meetings did open up further avenues worth exploring – and r o f ually EWS n possible changes n a cribe UY BPI N ver for the better. Subs o B c ‘

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The days following ‘TPS’ also witnessed a new trade fair in Germany; Photopia. Billed as a ‘one of a kind happening that brings alive the fascination of photography and videography through a collective playful experience,’ the event was a mix of summit, festival and exchange forum. The next is already set for 13th to 16th October 2022. So is this a possible replacement for Photokina? With a much more modest 50 exhibitors quoted as attending the inaugural event, it feels much too early to say. But again, it’s positive to see something industry focused arising out of the ashes, and during a pandemic. See photopia-hamburg.com for more. The theme of change this month, as autumn gives way to winter, continues with the news that Olympus branding is officially disappearing from cameras, lenses and related optical and audiovisual equipment at consumer level, replaced by ‘OM System’. We’ve news of the first product to herald the changes this issue. How this will go down with existing and particularly potential customers remains to be seen, as the Olympus name has been around for the lifetime of everyone working in the trade. If the past two years have taught us anything though, it’s to take nothing for granted – and neither do we take you, the reader, for granted. So if there are any changes you feel would make BPI News better as we head into 2022, please do get in touch via the usual addresses.

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BPI News | November 2021 3


News

NIKON SAYS YES TO NINE As tends to be the marketing ploy these days, we got plentiful teasers leading up to the announcement of the new flagship Nikon Z 9 (right) mirrorless camera at the close of last month. With sales promised to start Winter 2021, body-only price for what its maker terms ‘our most advanced camera ever made’ is £5,299. Nikon views its audience comprising pro fashion and commercial photographers who will need that high resolution, as well as wildlife, sports and photojournalists. The Z 9 features a new, stacked 45.7 MP full frame CMOS sensor designed it‘s claimed by Nikon engineers, plus an Expeed 7 processor. Its whopping 493-point auto focus system with 3D tracking is said to be the manufacturer’s most sophisticated to date, with speeds of up to 120 fps with full auto focus and exposure metering. More than 1,000 full resolution Raw frames can be captured at 20fps in one burst, says Nikon. Its robustness, meanwhile, is claimed to exceed that of the manufacturer’s own D6, even though its body is 20% smaller. In terms of moving footage captured by the Nikon Z 9, we get full frame 8K video between 24fps and 60fps, or 4K video from 24fps to 120fps, along with timelapse movies in-camera. What’s more, it’s claimed 8K 30P footage can be recorded for up

to 125 minutes at a time, currently the longest duration for mirrorless cameras. A compatible new telephoto zoom in the Nikkor Z 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 VR S (left) at £2,699 SRP has also been unveiled alongside the camera, along with a secondgeneration Mount Adapter FTZ II at £249 SRP. As the ‘VR’ in the lens’ name indicates, there is built-in Vibration Reduction, here said to be equivalent to 5.5 stops. A second new lens in the Nikkor Z 24-120mm f/4 S is also coming this side of Christmas at £1,099 SRP. Boasting a lightweight build,

the intended audience for the ‘travel ready’ zoom is everyone from landscape to street and portrait photographers. It also purports to be good for video, as there is virtually no focus breathing. A third new Z series lens in the Nikkor Z 400mm f/2.8 TC VR S (below) super telephoto prime lens with built-in 1.4x teleconverter has also been announced – although this one’s still in development. Promising beautiful bokeh and high resolution and with a design said to support video recording, there was no release date or price yet available as we went to press. Finally, professionals looking to speed up their workflow are being offered NX MobileAir – a smartphone application that automatically transfers images taken with Nikon cameras to an FTP server without the need for a computer – plus NX Tether; tethered shooting software that enables adjustment of camera settings on the computer as well as supporting remote shooting. NX Tether is downloadable now from the Nikon download centre, while NX MobileAir will materialise on Google Play and the App Store in 2022. www.nikon.co.uk

TIPA STAGES FIRST EVER AWARDS LIVE STREAM AT PHOTOPIA While most industry prize giving has happened virtually these past two years, the recipients of the previously announced TIPA World Awards – see BPI News June 21 edition for our full report – got handed theirs in person at new German show Photopia in Hamburg, which took place across four days. The prize giving of trophies, also live streamed for the first time via TIPA’s Facebook page and website, was hosted by TIPA Chairman Thomas Gerwers at the end of September event. This marked a new, exclusive partnership between TIPA and the Hamburg Messe and Congress for hosting the TIPA World Awards presentation at Photopia, which had the tagline of ‘Share Your Vision’.

Photographic British

Industry

As regular readers will be aware, there are awards given out annually in 40 categories that cover everything from entry level to professional photo equipment and software, along with inkjet papers, storage media, monitors,

video cameras, accessories and more. Head to the below address for a video of the original live-stream of the TIPA World Awards 2021 prize giving. www.tipa.com/awards-ceremony-2021/

Supported by

news

4 November 2021 | BPI News

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News

NOW IT’S OFFICIAL: GOODBYE OLYMPUS, HELLO ‘OM SYSTEM’ Long suspected news has been confirmed, rumoured since the sale of Olympus’s imaging division to a Japanese conglomerate last year, which prompted the creation of OM Digital Solutions to market and sell the brand. Though at the time it was ‘business as usual’ as regarded consumers, now the Olympus branding itself is being axed as a feature of its interchangeable lens cameras and lenses, compact digital cameras, audio products, binoculars and more, in favour of a new OM System brand. Though there will doubtless be many members of the photo trade and photographers alike sad to see branding for the Century-old Olympus disappearing from its cameras, OM Digital Solutions has revealed that it is currently developing a new Micro Four Thirds system camera that will ‘bring photography to the next level.’ For now though there is a new lens, the first product we’ve seen to

Canon’s Zoemini S2 invites users to go snap happy A product that may have slipped under your radar: Canon has unveiled a second generation of its pocket-sized 2-in-1 instant camera printer – the Zoemini S2 – which comes in Dark Teal, Pearl White and Rose Gold body colours – and outputs credit card sized prints and stickers, said to make it an ideal gift for those into scrapbooking. On sale now, the latest model allows users to add borders and colour filters, print in black and white, switch between shooting modes and save favourite snaps to print later. Interestingly, the compact 188g device doesn’t come with a screen of its own, but is designed to work in tandem with the user’s smartphone and Canon Mini Print app. Battery life is said to last for up to 25 photo prints. www.canon.co.uk

bear the ‘OM System’ branding, in the pocket-sized M.Zuiko Digital ED 20mm f/1.4 PRO (left). Constructed from 11 elements in 10 groups and with a 40mm effective focal length in 35mm terms, as well as that bright aperture the lightweight lens features a fully-sealed splash-proof, dustproof and freeze-proof design. Compatible accessories include a PRF-D58 PRO Protection Filter and LSC-0811 Lens Case. www.omsystem.com

Societies’ London Photo Show moves to March 2022 As previously mentioned in these pages, one ‘save the date’ event to place in your calendar as we begin looking to see what 2022 has to offer is the annual London Photo Convention and Trade Show, hosted by The Societies of Photographers. Returning to the Novotel London West in Hammersmith, the days you need to ring-fence are Wednesday 16th March through to Saturday 19th. Now in its 19th year, Europe’s largest ‘open to all’ photographic Trade Show hosts 100 exhibitors, alongside 200 hours of classes from 80 speakers, dedicated Business School, International 20x16inch Print Competition, Photographer of the Year Presentation Evening and more. Sony, Canon, Epson, Fujifilm, Permajet

and Photomart are just some of the leading companies confirmed so far, with Cameraworld and Park Cameras lined up as the main supporting dealers. The Societies of Photographers CEO Colin Jones says: “This is a great opportunity to be the first to see new 2022 products and discover new services from major manufacturers and players in the photographic industry. “The move from January to March has been welcomed by the photographic trade and members alike. With so much positivity surrounding the event, it’s going to be a fantastic Convention and I look forward to welcoming you all.” See the advert on page 7 for exhibitor packages from £999 +VAT for the

three-day show. Get in touch direct to find out more on 01745 356935 or email info@thesocieties.net

Value what you’re reading here? Then ‘Buy BPI a brew’ to help us continue publication. Donate via www.paypal.me/bpinews @bpi_news

BPI News | November 2021 5


BPI News Extra

SMART THINKING: CANON’S VIRTUAL FOCUS Just as we pressed the print button on our previous issue Canon finally released the latest in its burgeoning mirrorless line up – the EOS R3 (right) – which it has described as a ‘powerhouse’ for sports and reportage photography. At its heart is a claimed brand new 24.1 megapixel back-illuminated stacked sensor. But essentially this one is all about speed; when using the electronic shutter it can shoot at up to 30fps with AE/AF tracking, even when shooting Raw files, while alternative capture speeds include 15fps and 3fps. For the first time, the electronic shutter can also be used with both Canon and third party flashes. Other sales points include Eye Control AF point selection – which moves the focus point to where the photographer looks – shutter speeds of between 30 seconds and 1/64000 of a second when using the electronic shutter, full width 6K 60P Raw video recorded internally to CFexpress card, flip out and twist LCD, plus the ability to find focus in light levels as low as -7.5EV. Remote control of the camera is possible via Canon’s Camera Connect App. All of this doesn’t come cheap however, and the professional-grade EOS R3’s price tag is a wallet-battering £5,879.99 SRP. Also launched alongside the quick-fire mirrorless camera are two new compatible lenses in the enthusiast targeted RF 100400mm f/5.6-8 IS USM (below) (£699.99 SRP) and affordable ultra-wide RF 16mm f/2.8 STM (right) (£319.99 SRP), which add new focal lengths to its line up.

to streamline the 180° VR production process, and enhance content creators’ experience, from input to output. The new VR lens has an SRP of £2,099.99. Finally, arriving this month (November) at £449.99 SRP is the PowerShot PX (below), described as Canon’s first smart camera that it hopes will ‘transform’ the way that families take photographs, indicating that this could be a good option to push to customers this Christmas. Resembling a webcam or perhaps super-sized salt and pepper cellars, the desktop device can automatically capture 11.7 megapixel images and Full HD 60P video. It features a pan and tilt zoom lens (featuring a 340° pan and 110° tilt range) and a 19-57mm equivalent zoom lens. Face recognition technology is built-in, along with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth for communicating with users’ smartphones and tablets. Manual control and image management is via the Connect app for Mini PTZ Cam. www.canon.co.uk Speaking of lenses, last month Canon also unveiled a new RF 5.2mm f/2.8L Dual Fisheye lens (middle), which it claims enables 180° VR shooting with just the one camera and a single sensor, singling out its EOS R5 as the one for the job. The manufacturer says that demand for VR technology is on the rise across many sectors, including training, travel, sports, live events and documentaries, with the new lens being very much a ‘first’ for the brand. In tandem there is a newly developed VR software application launched in EOS VR Utility plus a plug in – EOS VR Plugin for Adobe Premiere Pro – in order

Value what you’re reading here? Then ‘Buy BPI a brew’ to help us continue publication. Donate via www.paypal.me/bpinews 6 November 2021 | BPI News

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PUT THE LONDON PHOTO SHOW IN YOUR DIARY…

NOW MOVED TO MARCH 2022!

& London Photo Show

Full Convention: Wednesday 16 – Saturday 19 March FREE* Trade Show Dates: Thursday 17 – Saturday 19 March Venue: Novotel London West Hammersmith, W6 8DR

MEET 1,000S OF PHOTOGRAPHERS AT EUROPE’S LARGEST CONVENTION AND TRADE SHOW We are committed to ensuring that your company will find great value in working with The Societies of Photographers. The Societies have been running successful events for the last 20 years, and for the last 19 years we have ran the largest photo Convention in Europe.

Key reasons to exhibit at the 2022 London Photo Convention Don’t get left behind This is a great opportunity to launch your company into the New Year by showcasing your products and services. This event takes place before any other industry show in 2022. Meet your customers Network with over 10,000 industry specialists and photographers who are looking to make informed decisions on which kit and services to invest in. Refine your strategy Gain invaluable market insight by speaking to the people who are going to be using your products and services. Find out what they expect and how you could expand your client base.

REGISTER TODAY FOR YOUR FREE TRADE SHOW TICKETS.*

Attend The Societies 2022 London Photographic Trade Show for FREE* NOW IN IT

S

19TH

All the latest photographic YEAR! equipment, products and services will be on show, and attendees will be able to watch demonstrations from leading manufacturers on their products. All the major players in the industry will be exhibiting, so it’s a good opportunity to meet the key personnel behind the latest photography equipment. Many of the 100+ exhibitors will also be offering special deals on their products and services, exclusive to the show with Cameraworld and Park Cameras the main supporting dealers.

Raise your profile Join a highly targeted and integrated visitor campaign reaching in a excess of a million contacts and maximise your brand exposure in the photographic industry. The Convention is supported by the majority of the leading photographic companies in the UK including: Sony, Canon, FujiFilm, Epson and Photomart to name a few.

You can exhibit from just £999 (+VAT) for the three-day show. Call us today to find out more 01745 356935 or email info@thesocieties.net

thesocieties.net/convention/

Register today to secure your FREE tickets to the 2022 Trade Show for yourself and staff.

Open to all from aspiring to pro... Put the dates in your diary now

*Pre-register before 28 February 2022 for FREE and avoid £10 entry fee to Trade Show.


BPI News Extra

A PANDEMIC EVENT, POSITIVE FOR THE RIGHT REASONS

After two-and-a-half years of Covid-19 enforced abstinence, the photo trade was finally able to sup again at the networking, sales making ‘well’ of The Photography Show. BPI News visited in September to report back…

K

udos to Future, organiser of The Photography Show – for putting on – and pulling off – the first major photo industry event during pandemic times, and maintaining its usual four days. We visited its regular location at Birmingham’s NEC on the Monday, having been given a visitor entry slot of 10am and asked to provide evidence of our health status via the NHS Covid App. Not quite business as usual then – and the show itself had shifted to adjacent halls – but nevertheless evidence that ‘normality’ was in some way resuming, thank God. Despite attendance tailing off from mid afternoon on the day we visited, the middle part of the day was what we’d describe as ‘comfortably busy’, with seemingly enough visitors on site to create that familiar show atmosphere, without us having to uncomfortably squeeze past or brush up against other bodies to visit the areas and stands we wanted to. Exhibitors we chatted with were upbeat on the whole and just glad to be back mixing with colleagues and meeting customers face-to-face after so long apart. One of the organising team I bumped into summed it up with: “people like being with people.” While some we chatted with bemoaned slower than usual activity across the opening weekend, and wondered if two days overall might have been sufficient this time, others told of plenty of interest – with location, size of stand and product itself obviously having a bearing, as usual. Given that, it’s hard to get an accurate grip on how well the show did overall compared with preCovid times – and organisers would not budge on revealing attendance figures to us as we went to press. Anyone who did attend who was still feeling cautious would however have welcomed the dispenser stations provided to cleanse hands, but with, to our eyes, at least 60% of attendees not wearing masks (which was similar

on our train up from London) at times we could almost forget we were still in the grips of a pandemic and believe we were back to ‘normal’. Future’s Head of Events Jonny Sullens was typically positive about how things had gone, saying: “I couldn’t be happier to put on our first show since the pandemic and am thankful to our exhibitors, visitors and suppliers for their support. Of course there were differences this year as we returned to live events in the new world, but it was absolutely fantastic to bring the photography community together under one roof again.” Mark Thackara, Content & Community Manager at OM Digital Solutions, as Olympus is now calling itself, was slightly more reflective, adding: “It’s very difficult to compare like for like and this year has been difficult with supply chain issues and more. But The Photography Show is great because it’s so much more than just the suppliers. You can do as many things online as you like, but we need this physical presence to remind people we’re here and we’re doing exciting things.” As for future plans (no pun intended), a rumour going around at the show confirmed in informal chats with the organisers suggested The Photography Show has interest in expanding its format oversees and plugging the gap left by the demise of Photokina in Germany. No ‘official’ word or statement as yet on that, though. What we do know for now is the plan is to keep the UK show in its new September slot, rather than March – a calendar month The Societies Convention has now deftly slid its own event into – with The Photography Show 2022 scheduled for Saturday September 17th through to Tuesday 20th September. For the latest updates, keep eyes peeled on www.photographyshow.com and register your own interest in exhibiting via Richard Macey on 020 7042 4284. Early bird rates were being offered to those applying before December 31st this year.

Familiar faces, familiar place: ‘TPS’ returned to the halls of the NEC... and with it many of the usual exhibiting brands and retailers offering up show deals to entice custom

Next year’s confirmed dates for The Photography Show are September 17th through the 20th, again back at the NEC. 8 November 2021 | BPI News

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The Photography Show Report

See www.photographyshow.com to keep up to date with all the month-by-month developments leading up to September 2022 NEVER MISS AN ISSUE! Read BPI News online at issuu.com/bpinewsonline

BPI News | November 2021 9


BPI News Product Focus

NANLITE TUBE LIGHTS & APP ILLUMINATE PROFIT FOR MAC GROUP CLIENTS

As we learnt last issue, MAC Group Europe has become the main distributor of Chinese lighting brand Nanlite for the UK and Ireland. We hear how its second generation PavoTube X series and Nanlink app can illuminate profits for photo retailers and customers alike

W

ith Nanlite’s comprehensive range of lighting products catering to just about every conceivable need for illumination a photographer could have – and probably a few we haven’t thought of – the good news is the brand has found a new home with MAC Group Europe, which has become the main distributor for the UK and Ireland. Wasting no time, MAC Group has ambitious plans for Nanlite, aiming to make it the first choice brand for photographers and content creators seeking quality, versatility and robustness from their continuous lighting. Newly arrived to further that aim are secondgeneration PavoTube X tube lights, plus Nanlink app and transmitter. Described as studio quality lighting you can take anywhere, the PavoTube II X series comes three years after the original’s release and is again aimed at both photographers and filmmakers. The choice of 2ft and 4ft tubes boast a brighter output and improved beam angle, with greater colour accuracy than before and a colour temperature range between 2700K and 12000K. A choice of 15 built-in lighting effects are provided, with the aim of bringing any production to life, while a whole new user interface presents many more options

for communication between devices. For example, support is now provided for DMX, RDM, Bluetooth and 2.4G wireless control, while simultaneously launched is the aforementioned Nanlink app. This is available for both Android and iOS devices and allows wireless control of the PavoTube II X, either individually or in groups, via mobile devices. The easy-to-navigate app with its sliding controls, toggle on/off functions and accurate colour guides also works in tandem with a lightweight and compact Nanlink Transmitter Box, which enables users to control not just its latest lights, but also, it’s claimed, most legacy Nanlite products. It believes that with almost 30 years at the forefront of LED innovation, its Nanlink solution, whether direct or via the transmitter box, will meet the needs of new and existing customers. With the Nanlink app available now for iOS and for Android from this December, the Transmitter Box has an SRP of £87 inc VAT.

ENHANCED FEATURES & ENHANCED BATTERY LIFE Of course innovations require power. As a wider range of features this time around potentially puts a bigger demand on batteries, the second generation PavoTube X series has adopted an enhanced battery solution that can last up to 29 hours if used at 1%, with a recharging time of between three hours and three-and-half hours. “Flows in shape, ideas at will’ is the slogan for the launch of the PavoTube II X series,” concludes MAC Group Europe’s Nanlite Product Marketing Manager Terry Caws. “Which literally means it’s applicable anywhere and creative anytime. We think this perfectly interprets the aspiration behind the development of the PavoTube II X series.” There are currently six kits and configurations available for the new series, ranging from £360 SRP for the PT15X to £1,965 for the PT30X 4 Kit. Get in touch with MAC Group Europe direct to find out more. Finally, it’s worth adding that unlike many lighting companies that source components from third parties, Nanlite controls 100% of its manufacturing process, which allows the company to respond quickly to customer needs with state-of-the-art technologies and the highest level of quality control. To order stock of Nanlite products contact MAC Group Europe direct on 01902 255 500. For more on the range plus the distributor’s comprehensive photography related brands, please visit: www.macgroupeu.com

Quicker by tube: A choice of 2ft or 4ft Nanlite PavoTube X lights boast a brighter output and greater colour accuracy in their second iterations, and are designed to work with Nanlink app (shown bottom left) and Nanlink Transmitter Box (below centre)

Autumn/winter is the perfect time to sell Nanlite’s lighting solutions! Contact MAC Group Europe now on 01902 255 500 10 November 2021 | BPI News

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Minilab News

ENTER NEW PHOTO PRINT MARKETS WITH DNP’S VERSATILE MINILAB

A business to ‘dye’ for! With the DS-Pro1 minilab, DNP is offering retailers the opportunity to seize on emerging market trends and develop their business. BPI News hears from two enthusiastic pioneers who have placed DNP’s system at the heart of their business and are reaping the reward…

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e’ve all observed an increase in e-commerce since the start of the pandemic. But some local stores too have benefitted from the goodwill and attachment of their customers, who have grown to appreciate the ability to access services right on their doorstep. During these challenging times, by offering the right photo products and services, retailers can preserve their existing clients while simultaneously growing their customer base. Dye sub print specialist DNP confirmed that the stores who have adapted their production capabilities with more agile, open and scalable tools are the ones who have been able to withstand market turbulence.

A REAL PHOTO PRINTING HUB As new market conditions require adaptable systems, DNP is providing its photo retail customers with its DS-Pro1 photo-printing hub, via which they can develop their business through its countless configurations, while controlling costs and growing profit. A big benefit is that the DS-Pro1 minilab, in being both open and scalable, can be connected to any type of photo printing device – even those from other brands.

A system for success: DNP’s modular DS-Pro1 enables photo retailers including Belen and Mar (pictured) to take advantage of market trends, such as the growing demand for personalised photo gifts

grow significantly across several European countries despite the challenging times we’ve found ourselves in. By choosing the right solutions, such as the DS-Pro1 minilab, retailers can also avoid

We did not want to make any compromise on print quality because that is the number one reason for our customers’ loyalty… DNP’s dye sublimation system has not only improved our print production but also our working conditions.” This allows users to take advantage of pre-existing market trends accelerated and amplified by the crisis of the past two years. For example the ability to produce value added photo gifts including calendars, posters and personalised greetings cards. According to industry watcher FutureSource, which has conducted its own market review, sales of these photo products have continued to

unnecessary investments and additional costs. The result? A healthier bottom line. The modular DS-Pro1 of course offers the further appeal of DNP’s market leading dye sublimation print technology, which we’ve covered in detail in BPI News previously. Main advantages include its ease of use, very competitive operating costs and the fact that it’s almost maintenance free.

To learn more about DNP Photo Imaging products and services that can help to optimise and improve 12 November 2021 | BPI News

www.bpinews.co.uk


DNP Advertorial It’s no surprise that its high quality photo printing has won over even the most demanding of photo specialists. Compared to other technologies requiring complicated start up and maintenance procedures, DNP dye sub systems can be turned on and off instantly whenever needed and at no additional cost whatever the production pace. As regards operating costs, DNP underlines that dye sub printing systems are also less expensive because major spare parts, such as print heads, are cheaper and don’t need replacing so often.

A MINILAB ALMOST MAINTENANCE FREE But we don’t just need to take DNP’s word for it. Belen and Mar, partners in the photo store ‘Yenes Fotógrafos’, located in a shopping mall near Madrid in Spain, have been running their business for 20 years. Just like any UK photo retailer worth their salt, in that time they have built a loyal clientele thanks to their enthusiasm and constant commitment to offering the best quality of service possible. Always searching for new photo printing solutions to improve their business – especially as photo printing accounts for nearly 100% of their store’s turnover – the two entrepreneurs are among the first in Europe to replace their former system with a DNP DS-Pro1 minilab. So how does their set up compare to your own? Well, in believing that “a photo is not a photo until it’s printed,” their printing activity is split between ID photos, which is almost 50% of the business, customer photos for 40% and their own studio photos for the rest. Best selling products include the classic 10x15

print, while, although seasonal, calendars are its best selling photo gifts. A typical client is between 35 and 50 years of age, seeking to print photos of family events. “Our younger clients have different printing habits,” they say. “Usually they don’t print a big number of the photos at once, but they print more often. The elderly clients are becoming more familiar with digital photography but they remain more attached to photo prints, so when they figure out how easy it is to print photos from digital devices, they become regular customers.” The duo opted for the DNP DS-Pro1 minilab after retiring their eight year-old

Point of order: Younger clients may not print a huge number of images at once, but they print regularly. The order terminals for the DS-Pro1 can give your store a more contemporary look to attract such clients

previous system, which had frustrated them with endless maintenance issues and recurrent calibration needs, as well as the need to pay hundreds in monthly maintenance fees and for the replacement of worn out parts too. “In the end, with all the hidden costs, it was not possible to evaluate the exact cost per print, but it was obviously more expensive than initially expected and this had a negative impact on the profitability of the store.” The pair were very choosy when it came to installing a replacement system because they did not want to compromise on print quality, believing it to be the “number one reason for our customers’ loyalty. We did not know much about dye sublimation but were quickly convinced by the print quality. It did not take long to realise that DNP’s dye sublimation systems require very little maintenance; exactly what we needed!” The store quickly found that the main advantages of the DNP minilab are the excellent print quality, the absence of daily maintenance and low and predictable print costs. “Overall we are very satisfied with the DNP system, which has not only improved our print production but also our working conditions,” they enthuse. “Our existing customers are positively surprised by the high print quality of the DNP printers, even for black and white photos, and by the thickness of the Premium Digital paper as well. We’ve also received some compliments about the more ‘professional’ and modern look that the new order terminals gave to the store. We’ve even gained new customers through word of mouth after we changed our system.” Due to the pandemic restrictions, a majority of customers order photo prints via the local store’s online site, then come and collect their orders in-store – thus maintaining that valuable face-to-face customer contact that builds relationships. In conclusion, it goes without saying that this particular retailer would heartily recommend DNP’s DS-Pro1 minilab to fellow store owners: “In this delicate period, especially for small enterprises like us, we believe that it is important not to fall behind on technological advancements that can help our business. So yes, absolutely! Actually, we have already recommended the DNP system to Belen’s own sister who also runs a photo printing business.” To learn more about DNP Photo Imaging products and services that can help to optimise and improve your business, visit www.dnpphoto.eu and get in touch with your local DNP representative via sales@dnpphoto.eu

your business, visit www.dnpphoto.eu and get in touch with your local DNP representative via sales@dnpphoto.eu NEVER MISS AN ISSUE! Read BPI News online at issuu.com/bpinewsonline

BPI News | November 2021 13


BPI News Product Focus

RAZZLE DAZZLE ‘EM WITH EPSON’S GARMENT PRINTER Official reseller the DPS Group is offering up Epson’s ‘DTG’ (Direct-to-Garment) SC-F2100 T-shirt printer to retailers wanting to print garments, Christmas stockings and Santa sacks for customers in time for peak gifting season

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hristmas is coming up fast and that means prime gifting season is too. At one time a personalised photo gift meant a key ring or a mug, but now T-shirts, tote bags, Christmas stockings, Santa sacks and, in fact, any manner of garments are proving a sure-fire winner with customers. Epson reseller the DPS Group can help any photo retailer profit handsomely from this growing market with the aid of Epson’s direct-togarment (or ‘DTG’) SC-F2100 printer. “This is a perfect printer to install coming up to the busy Christmas period,” confirms DPS Group MD Maneesh Patel. “After nearly 20 months of doom and gloom, this autumn it could prove the lifesaver that puts the sparkle back in your business and boosts your bottom line. It’s time to razzle dazzle your customers by personalising garments, Christmas stockings and sacks with their photos.” The high-end printer enables printing on garments that range from 100% cotton to 50/50 fabric blends. A clever use of four colour inks plus white ink ensures that printed garment designs truly ‘pop’. Moreover Santa and his elves won’t be twiddling their thumbs waiting for it to finish either; the SCF2100 boasts operation that’s twice as swift as the previous generation, thanks to features including a quick-load platen

“Booking a demo with our DPS team at our Kent showroom, or giving us a call to chat through your requirements and find out how the SC-F2100 can help, is strongly advised,” adds Maneesh.

THIS TIME IT’S PERSONAL(ISED)

Plenty of shelf life: Epson’s SC-F2100 garment printer can not only fulfil customers’ photo gift orders but can also be used to create attractive in-store and window displays to pull in even more custom

plus a Light Garment Mode. With the festive season soon upon us, why not speak to the DPS Group about ordering in a DTG printer now and seize a golden opportunity to build up an in-store or window display of printed garments that will, in turn, build customer demand?

A further bonus for BPI News readers ready to partner with the DPS Group for their garment printing requirements is that you will also be able to take advantage of its ongoing low prices for inks. Truly a ‘one stop shop’, the company can tailor a package that’s unique to your level of business and on-going requirements. So don’t miss the golden opportunity to print garments for your customers to gift this Christmas. Contact sales@dpsb.co.uk or call 020 8460 3690 now. www.thedpsgroup.co.uk www.dpsb.co.uk

“This is a perfect printer to install coming up to the busy Christmas period and could prove the lifesaver that puts the sparkle back in your business and boosts your bottom line.” DPS Group MD Maneesh Patel

SureColor F2100 garment printer at a glance: High quality garment prints delivered fast Twice as quick as the previous generation ‘DTG’ printer Designs that really ‘pop’, thanks to four colour inks plus white ink set up Prints on 100% cotton garments, or 50/50 fabric blends Intuitive Epson Garment Creator Software is easy to use Less downtime thanks to an integrated self-cleaning system

Don’t miss out! Book an Epson F2100 demo with DPS Group NOW on 020 8460 3690, email sales@dpsb.co.uk or visit www.dpsb.co.uk 14 November 2021 | BPI News

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BPI News Product Focus

SIGMA’S SMALL ZOOM HAS BIG MIRRORLESS APPEAL Not only do L-Mount and Sony E-mount customers have the choice of a new Sigma 18-50mm f/2.8 DC DN Contemporary zoom; its maker also reveals Black Friday cashback deals you need to push

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-Mount and Sony E-mount mirrorless camera owners are being directed to the ultra compact and lightweight new Sigma 18-50mm f/2.8 DC DN Contemporary standard zoom. Billed as its maker’s first mirrorless zoom for crop sensor cameras, it delivers an equivalent focal range of 27mm to 75mm in the 35mm format. It can be used on full frame models such as Sigma’s own fp L in crop mode, as well as of course with APS-C sensor cameras. With its ultra small and light construction making it ideal for day-to-day shooting – including street and landscape photography, as well as portraits and close ups thanks to a 12.1cm minimum focus distance – the lens’ other headline features are ‘incredible’ optical performance, quality construction and ultra-fast AF response.

Small wonder: a compact lens with a big performance is the message behind Sigma’s 18-50mm f/2.8 DC DN Contemporary zoom. Sample image shown here.

“This ultra-small standard zoom is ideal for day-to-day shooting because it’s so portable, and image and build quality are exceptional, as you’d expect from a Sigma optic.” Sigma UK General Manager Paul Reynolds

© Damien Dohmen

The wide aperture of f/2.8 maintained throughout the zoom range further allows for smooth and attractive ‘bokeh’ effects. Boasting a maximum diameter of 65.4mm and a length of 74.5mm, the lens is described as the smallest and lightest in its class at 290g at the time of writing. In fact, to keep the lens as light as possible, for its barrel construction a Thermally Stable Composite (TSC) polycarbonate has been used, which is purported to have a thermal conductivity close to that of aluminium – thus ensuring a consistent performance even

when used in changing temperatures. Using metal for some of the internal structure has ensured parts can be thinner while boasting a higher rigidity. Made in Japan, the lens complements the cameras to which it will be attached in being itself dust and splash resistant. Availability for the new zoom was from October 29th, with an SRP of £429.99.

Get cash in with Sigma’s Black Friday cash back deals This year the annual retail bonanza known as Black Friday falls on November 26th, yet Sigma’s own time-limited offer generously runs across the week, claimable from the 22nd to the 30th inclusive. And once again the focus is exclusively on six mirrorless lenses in its Contemporary series.

There’s £60 cash back being offered on its AF 35mm f/2 DG DN, AF 65mm f/2 DG DN and AF 24mm f/3.5 DG DN (all three

Contemporary class lenses compatible with Sony E-mount and L-Mount). Alternatively Micro Four Thirds, EF-M, Sony E-mount and L-Mount photographer customers alike may be tempted by £40 cash back offers on Sigma’s AF 30mm f/1.4 DC DN, AF 56mm f/1.4 DC DN, or AF 16mm f/14 DC DN. Contact your local Sigma rep now for all the cash back T&C’s and further details.

All of Sigma’s lenses come with the benefit of a three-year limited warranty. Visit www.sigma-imaging-uk.com NEVER MISS AN ISSUE! Read BPI News online at issuu.com/bpinewsonline

BPI News | November 2021 15


BPI News Product Focus

MAC GROUP DEBUTS BENRO TRIPLE ACCESSORY WHAMMY Exclusively available now via MAC Group Europe, Benro MeFoto RoadTrip PRO tripods, MeVideo accessory range and the Induro Hydra2 waterproof travel tripod seek to win over photographers and content creators alike

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hoto retailers will be well aware of Chinese brand Benro’s expertise when it comes to bags and tripods for both photographers and content creators. But its new six-in-one MeFoto RoadTrip PRO tripod series is being pitched as more than a travel tripod. In fact the sleek, jam-packed device is termed beautiful, playful and versatile by distributor MAC Group. Keeping things simple, the aluminium or carbon fibre construction MeFoto RoadTrip PRO comes in one size, yet a choice of three colours: Black, Silver and Pacific Blue (below). The ‘six-in-one’ aspect references the fact that it can be used as a tripod, or quickly converted to a monopod, selfie stick, ground level or table-top tripod, plus a full height stand. The device is smartphone compatible and features a 1/4-inch mounting socket, with a new innovative Arca compatible QR plate allowing users to switch from phone to camera in an instant. The carbon fibre version weighs just 1.37Kg and the aluminium version a still manageable 1.64Kg. With a maximum payload capacity of 8Kg these tripods support everything from a point and shoot to a DSLR and zoom lens. With a portable folded length of 38.5cm, making it small enough to just about carry anywhere, maximum height is 152.5cm. It’s also dust and weather resistant. Available now, the Benro MeFoto RoadTrip PRO aluminium tripod has an SRP of £170, while the RoadTrip PRO carbon fibre tripod is £225 SRP. Further product info can be found at: uk.benroeu.com/mefoto-roadtrip-pro/

ENGAGE WITH CONTENT CREATORS Content creators and those engaged in the live streaming of video are also being catered for by a brand new Benro MeVideo range of accessories – which aims to help provide better video and improved audio. There are a generous nine new gadgets to choose from in the series, with very affordable suggested retail prices ranging from just £5.50 for a MeVideo Livestream Mini Ball Head with built-in ¼-inch mounting thread up to £80 for the MeVideo Carbon Livestream Stand (right), which supports a payload of 2Kg and has a maximum 219cm height. Alternatively there’s a MeVideo Aluminium Livestream Stand (£25 SRP) that supports the same weight, and has a height of 170cm.

Other products in the range include the Benro MeVideo Cold Shoe Adapter (above) (£9 SRP), which allows for up to three cold shoe accessories – for example microphone, monitor and light – to be attached to a camera to enhance production values. The MeVideo Livestream Kit (below) (£32.50 SRP) enables multiple devices or accessories to be mounted from a centre point – for example phones, LED light, and audio gear, allowing for streaming across several devices simultaneously – with four flex arms included in multiple lengths. Next up is the MeVideo Sidekick Pocket (top left, page 17) foldable smartphone adapter at £35 SRP, with the aim of making it easier to produce content with a smartphone.

To order stock of Benro’s new trio of product lines contact MAC Group Europe direct on 01902 255 500. 16 November 2021 | BPI News

www.bpinews.co.uk


MAC Group Advertorial located in the rubber foot for adjusting the tension of the leg stop locks on the spider and the other two on the weight hook: one to tighten down the set screw on the flat base, and the other to remove the accessory screw on the spider. Available now, the Benro Induro Hydra2 travel tripod has an SRP of £450. For more, visit: uk.benroeu.com/photo/by-collection/ induro-tripods/ To order stock of Benro’s new trio of product lines contact MAC Group Europe direct on 01902 255 500. For a more comprehensive look at all the distributor’s offerings, visit: www.benroeu.com

With a one-size-fits-all design, like its name indicates it folds up to pocket sized dimensions for easy portability. The MeVideo Livestream Smartphone /Tablet holder (above, right) (£10 SRP) meanwhile can support both a smartphone and tablet at the same time, while the MeVideo Livestream Tablet holder at £9 SRP supports just the tablet, one idea being to use it as a teleprompter or additional monitor. Lastly for now, the Benro MeVideo Series MWH-1 Headset at £32.50 SRP features padded ear cushions, stereo output and a dynamic microphone. The wired headset is said to offer a perfect hands free solution for virtual meetings, video calls or live streaming – make sure to order in sufficient stock to meet expected demand. For further info, visit the below URL: uk.benroeu.com/photo/ by-collection/smartphonegear/mevideo/

WATERPROOF TRAVEL TRIPOD MAKES A SPLASH There are a bunch of travel tripods on the market, each making the case for being compact, lightweight and portable. However the new Benro Induro Series Hydra2 (right) travel tripod goes one better in terms of durability, in being waterproof. It joins three existing models in the Induro Classic range of carbon fibre tripods. Of course it’s reassuringly stable and strong too, thanks to a carbon fibre weave construction, while being capable of a maximum height of 153cm, with the centre column extended, or alternatively folding down to just 42.4cm in length. With five leg sections, and three-stop adjustable leg locks, a maximum load of a whopping 17Kg is supported. An oversized CNC machined centre column-locking collar makes it straightforward to secure the centre column in any vertical position. The tripod also stays the course in the wet and provides enhanced stability on any terrain thanks to interchangeable rubber feet and stainless steel spikes. A built in bubble spirit level helps deliver photographers a straight horizon, while a weight hook is there for added stability if needed. Ready for any creative eventuality, the Hydra2 comes with a tool kit, drawstring bag and carrying case. There are also three built-in allen keys: one

For a more comprehensive look at all the distributor’s offerings, visit: www.benroeu.com NEVER MISS AN ISSUE! Read BPI News online at issuu.com/bpinewsonline

BPI News | November 2021 17


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News

SONY BOASTS ‘ULTIMATE HYBRID’ MIRRORLESS & NEW FLASHES Customers can’t get enough of Sony’s Alpha range, and want to shoot as much video as stills? Direct them to the fact there’s a new model arriving in December in the Alpha 7 IV (centre) with newly developed 33-megapixel full frame sensor – plus two new flashes compatible with the new camera in the HVL-F60RM2 (below) and HVL-F46RM (right). “With the introduction of the Alpha 7 III, we set the baseline for what full-frame cameras should deliver and now it is time to redefine those boundaries,” enthuses Sony Europe’s Director of Product Marketing Yann Salmon Legagneur. “The Alpha 7 IV brings together the best of Sony imaging technology to deliver a fantastic experience in both stills and video, meaning that users will be able to capture exactly the content that they want, in whatever situation they find themselves in.” The new camera features a latest generation Bionz XR processor and advanced AF capabilities based on its flagship Alpha 1 model, the manufacturer says. We also get the ability to record

4K 60P resolution continuously for more than an hour – thanks in part to the camera’s heat dissipating structure. Videographers further benefit from a 3-inch, 1.03 million dot resolution, flip out and twist touch panel LCD screen. Interestingly, the camera body is said to make use of Sony’s original recycled plastic – or ‘Sorplas’ – which has also been used for its packaging. Price for the Alpha 7 IV is either £2400 SRP body only or £2,600 SRP for a lens kit.

As the model names for the wireless accessory flashes suggest, the HVLF60RM2 has a guide number of 60 and offers 20-200mm coverage, while the HVL-F46RM boasts a guide number of 46 and 24-105mm coverage. Pricing is £550 and £370 SRP respectively. www.sony.co.uk

Holdan on for Samyang A quartet of new Samyang lenses arrives this autumn/winter, via Holdan’s ‘Imaging Solutions’ division. As you’ll recall, Samyang’s previous distributor Intro 2020 was acquired by Holdan Limited at the end of July this year, at which point the new division was formed. First up is the Samyang AF 24-70mm f/2.8 FE (right), its first zoom lens, which arrives early this month in the company’s 50th year at £828 SRP. Designed for use with Sony E-mount full frame and APS-C mirrorless cameras, the versatile allin-one lens is said to be equally suited to shooting stills and video. For those who are primarily videographers, a Samyang ‘Cine Kit’ consisting of focus gearing, follow focus and tripod mount is available separately. Next is the compact and lightweight Samyang AF 12mm f/2 X (right), pitched as the company’s first AF lens for Fuji’s X-mount. It also arrives this month, this time at £402 SRP. With a construction

comprising 12 elements in 10 groups, it delivers a 35mm equivalent focal length of 18mm. Optical aberration is corrected by three extra-low dispersion (ED) lenses and two high refractive (H-ASP and ASP) lenses. Again, it’s said to be suitable for video use, with the AF operating quietly and smoothly in video recording mode. Sticking with the video theme is the VDSLR 135mm T2.2 MK2 cine lens (below). Arriving December, SRP is £564. The compact size of this telephoto lens – 12.2cm in length and weighing 866.4g – is said to make it perfect for handholding and gimbal shooting. One of six such lenses and six focal lengths available, compatibility is offered with six different mounts too: Canon EF, Sony E, Nikon F, Canon M, Fuji X and Micro Four Thirds, making them suitable for both DSLR and mirrorless systems.

Finally, also new is the AF 50mm f/1.4 FE II (below), an upgraded secondgeneration version of Samyang’s first ever AF lens released back in 2016. Due early December at £599 SRP, it’s claimed that it’s the smallest and lightest among all the large aperture standard 50mm focal length lenses compatible with the Sony FE mount, therefore demand is expected to be ‘huge’.

Contact sales@holdan.co.uk for more. www.holdan.co.uk/brand/samyang

BPI News is your mouthpiece to the photo trade, so use it! Send your press releases and news items direct to: info@bpinews.co.uk @bpi_news

BPI News | November 2021 19


Business Advice

DOES THAT OL’ BLACK FRIDAY MAGIC STILL DAZZLE? In pandemic times when online sales have been boosted/grown incrementally and selling and buying habits shifted, not to mention certain stock being in short supply, is the annual consumer bargain hunt of Black Friday still essential... and one that can out-do Christmas itself in terms of cash into the tills?

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hat stock you’ve had hanging around the warehouse or back room for the past six months? This month’s return of the annual Black Friday bargain-fest – this year falling on November 26th – may seem like an ideal opportunity to attempt to shift it. But with a lack of drivers, certain stock shortages and delays to deliveries already, will the short-term shock of Black Friday put added pressure on an already strained infrastructure? Or, are perhaps customers currently more understanding if an item takes a little longer to get to them than expected? After all, we’ve all had bigger things to worry about these past couple of years, and would hope there is a degree of empathy for the challenges facing businesses. Whatever the times, the core issue still remains of how to make money from selling something that is, on the face of it, a bargain, when profit margins are already squeezed tight on certain goods? Naturally, the aim of the day – in fact now a four-day weekend of discounts, with others extending Black Friday deals over a fortnight – is to sell more of a given discounted product, making money in the long run while cross fertilising sales of other products. That’s after all what Amazon pioneered at the bottom of each of its web pages; with multi buy deals or links to related products that other customers have bought. In recent years more major manufacturers have supported Black Friday promotions with double cash backs and the like, which photo retailers are then able to very usefully piggyback their own limited offers on. That said, it is possible to have too much of a good thing and in other quarters there is a groan that goes up at the mention of Black Friday; the reason being it’s a lot of work for short term gain and so resources (or deals) might be better directed elsewhere, or promotions run at different times when their brand isn’t forced to duke it out with all the others.

Then there are stores who tell us that potential customers waiting on the hope of a Black Friday bargain kills their trade in October before, and, to a lesser extent, in December after. Still, those same retailers also tell us they feel like they are missing out if they don’t offer any tie-in deals at all.

LIGHTNING STRIKES! While practically every competing retailer won’t have Amazon’s level of traffic or buying power, there are other tricks of the trade to try around Black Friday – such as the ‘lightning deal’. The idea of course being that limited numbers of stock are offered at a discount price and for a short period of time in the week running up to Black Friday. Shoppers can see how long is left on the clock and the percentage of the stock that’s already been claimed,

Friday is also the fact that it’s time limited. Yes, retailers can make hay while the sun shines but that momentum also needs to be maintained throughout the year; similar to the annual Record Store Day, a one-day bonanza of ‘collectables’ which introduces new customers to established music shops that they then hopefully keep and capitalise on in the weeks and months after. With the aim of keeping and building on Black Friday custom, photo retailers need to capture and harvest data collected online and then, carefully, email offers to customers with a call to action. The same offer can then be made to social media connections. Of course online sales, though typically in the majority for this discount period, are just one aspect of Black Friday and there’s an argument to suggest that photo retailers should offer in-store only

One argument says it’s a great opportunity to secure extra sales, the other argument is when stock is so short do we really need to promote? Still, the oldest rule in the salesperson manual is ‘sell what you’ve got’.” Wilkinson Cameras MD David Parkinson which plays on the growing obsession with when to buy. And in fact this lightning deal tactic is now a tried and tested one with many retailers throughout the year, as long as such offers don’t become so commonplace they become irritating and off-putting ‘spam’ in the eyes of customers. Another tactic is to expand the time limited promotions and link them to specific and different methods of selling – in-store, online, or via notifications on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. Each promotion can be used to create awareness of the given channel being used. If done correctly, this then creates a following through shareable email, web-links or posts read by followers. However the very problem with Black

incentives too – again similar to what the music industry does with Record Store Day. You might like to set up in-person offers that only commerce when your shop doors open on the Friday and Saturday of Black Friday weekend. Done correctly, you might even get a queue forming outside the store before it opens, encouraging further custom from curious passers by.

THAT OL’ BLACK MAGIC? There is a caveat to all of this though and traders need to be sensible and exercise caution. The typical Black Friday bargain hunter seeking the cheapest deal possible is unlikely to turn into a regular bread

Got your own ideas about how the photo industry can counter the challenges arising from the pandemic, 20 November 2021 | BPI News

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Sell smarter this Black Friday

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and butter customer who will reward you with years of return business, though one or two might, through luck more than anything. And maybe you don’t actually need heavy discounts to appeal to customers. In recent years consumer surveys have indicated that free shipping seems to be as much of an incentive. Like a trick we’ve witnessed more than once, interest in Black Friday may wain and the concept not last forever, so yes, a bit of thought and some clever ideas can pay dividends at this stage, without shooting yourself in the foot when it comes to profit margins. A bit of planning regarding how you’re going to be able to fulfil all those expected orders on top of regular business would additionally be wise. Major retailers have had to extend expected delivery dates from four days to a week in the past because of the Black Friday influx of orders – a lucky position to be in, perhaps, but one that it’s better to try and plan in advance for, than be forced to react to in panic. The takeaway is that traders thinking to run a sale need to plan

Black Friday remains largely unchanged from previous years. Online sales have grown, but at the expense of over the counter sales. Black Friday is still and will always be a major sales boost, which in recent years has overtaken Christmas in terms of importance. We are gearing up for it to be another welcomed boost to sales!” Jason Mitchell, Cameraworld ahead and secure supplies while also offering manageable delivery times, and managing customer expectations to boot. So, how to play it this year, given the added variant of the exceptional times we’re living through? “Tough one this,” admits Wilkinson Cameras’ MD David Parkinson. “One argument says it’s a great opportunity to secure extra sales, the other argument is when stock is so short do we really need to promote? “No doubt the Black Friday event will be a little subdued compared with previous years. However, as a retail business we need to sell goods as this generates the revenues we need to pay the bills, so the smart thing to do is to support the manufacturers that

are supporting us with Black Friday activity and promote the stock we can get! The oldest rule in the salesperson manual is ‘sell what you’ve got’. “So we’ll have a host of activity from a number of the brands including Canon, Nikon, Sony, Epson, Tamron, Panasonic and more. And, with these extra savings and the customer knowledge that stock is in short supply, Christmas may come early this year.” To conclude, it’s with this sort of common sense approach that Black Friday can still be turned to a trader’s advantage – even in the time of a prolonged and seemingly never-ending pandemic. After all, human nature hasn’t changed and people still love a bargain.

or care to share what’s working for you (without giving away trade secrets)? Then do get in touch direct via info@bpinews.co.uk @bpi_news

BPI News | November 2021 21


News

‘WIDE’ AUDIENCE SOUGHT FOR SMARTPHONE PRINTER

Pick up our catalogue in-store! _Swains_A3Poster v2.indd 1

02/11/2021 16:00

Swains spins an Xmas Saga to drive business With Christmas coming, Swains has put together a 16-page colour brochure titled ‘Discover Photography’. A proactive response, it acknowledges, to business being tough for all these past 18 months, the document divulges the many advantages of using a camera and a photo printer and gives tips on what camera and printer to choose. “Our first task was to try and secure stock from suppliers, having held meetings with each manufacturer,” explains Swains MD Danny Williams. “Working closely, we have managed to select a number of lines that hopefully will give us the best chance of supply in the run up to Christmas. The manufacturers have been very supportive and have included some added value bundles where possible.” Swains’ next task was finding a mechanism to get the sales-driving brochure into as many consumers’ hands as possible – settling on inserting the brochure into the December issue of Saga, in hoping to reach 202,000 households. With 10,600 copies going to camera club members and a further 57,400 going to photo specialists to use in store, web banners and posters promoting the brochure have also been produced. Danny tells us 76 independent photo specialists have so far thrown their support behind the program. Get in touch with Swains direct to find out more. www.swains.co.uk

Fujifilm has launched a wide format instant print device: the Instax Link WIDE. This follows on from its Instax mini Link printer, first introduced in 2019. The new model works in conjunction with a free Instax Link WIDE App, which is required for full functionality, with the users’ smartphone connecting with the printer via Bluetooth. It is also compatible with Fuji’s X-S10 mirrorless camera. Supporting continuous printing, Fuji says its wide format instant printer is capable of outputting approximately 100 prints per battery charge. Available now in a choice of

two colours – Ash White and Mocha Gray – the Instax Link WIDE’s SRP is £129.99. Accompanying the hardware launch is a new Instax WIDE Black instant film, which provides a ‘stylish’ black border for images instead of the traditional white border. Each pack, which retails at £9.99 SRP, contains 10 exposures. www.fujifilm.co.uk

BROADCAST ON THE WIRELESS Audio specialist Saramonic, as distributed by MAC Group Europe, has expanded its range with two wireless microphone kits promising broadcast quality sound. These are the UwMic9S Kit 1 (£285 SRP) and UwMic9S Kit 2 (£427.50 SRP), described as the ‘next generation of the dual channel wireless system that changed the industry’. Delivering pro quality sound, yet featuring the ease of use that won’t daunt a beginner, it features an operating range of up to 100 metres and a system battery run time of up to eight hours.

The TX9S belt pack transmitter (two of which are included in Kit 2) features a dedicated locking 3.5mm mic and line level inputs, while the RX9S dual camera mountable receiver features an array of input and output options. Head to www.saramonicuk.com for more product info. www.macgroupeu.com

IN MEMORIAM: DAVID GRANT Mark Easterbrook, whose father Len was one time General Manager of Technical and Optical Equipment in north London, selling Zenith cameras and Helios lenses, has been in touch to inform us of the death aged 91 of David Grant, a one time friendly competitor and industry colleague of his Dad’s. Mark describes David (pictured), who worked at CZ Scientific selling Praktica cameras from the 1970s to the late 1990s, as a ‘familiar face in the photo trade’. He continues “David was a true gentleman and one of the many lovely characters who were prominent during one of the most exciting periods in the photographic trade.”

Value what you’re reading here? Then ‘Buy BPI a brew’ to help us continue publication. Donate via www.paypal.me/bpinews 22 November 2021 | BPI News

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