Magic Monday: Smugmug
They say word of mouth referrals are the strongest. Especially if they are packed with enthusiasm and eager testimonial.
I’ve been promoting Smugmug (unsolicited mind you) since my first day as a user nearly three years ago. It has been exciting to see their continual growth and evolution in the great depth of service that they provide. Smugmug is truly integral to my business workflow as well as my personal photography pursuits.
Quickly, “What is Smugmug?”
Smugmug is an incredible online company that provides you the opportunity to back-up your photos online, create stunning photo galleries, connects you to the nations greatest photo labs for printing, and provides you an opportunity to share your images online with clients or family and friends.
Why I think EVERYONE should use Smugmug.
(EVERYONE, includes professionals, hobbyists, AND especially my mom–the typical consumer with a camera who may or may not have had a devastating run in or two with having your computer hard drive crash and losing ALL your digital pictures…or perhaps never gets around to printing those digital files because burning a CD and driving to the local lab is too much a hassle…and perhaps she just can’t figure out that upload option by herself and it takes so much time to upload each individual picture and select everything and THEN drive to pick up the images…so in turn nearly all the images are on the computer only. Not printed. Not backed up, and basically sitting as a huge disaster waiting to happen. I’m sure no one else is like this at all :) )
So WHY should EVERYONE use Smugmug?!
1. Online backup.
My first and foremost MOST IMPORTANT REASON OF ALL. For as little as $3/month, you can rest easy knowing the value of all your images are safe and backed up. My guess is that most people are like me, and given a disaster situation, you probably wouldn’t be running to save your flat screen t.v. before your personal heritage in pictures. If so, we need a little priority check.
2. They’re secure. Using Amazon.com’s servers, these images are backed by the “gold-standard” of back-up gaurantee, with servers in several different states.
3. Unlimited Storage. I think at last count I had uploaded somewhere around 30,000 images in the last 3 years. All still there. All safe. Easy to access anywhere and no extra cost.
4. Fabulous Printing (and prices). They combed the country for the best labs. They found them. I’ve used them. The results are stunning. ABSOLUTELY STUNNING.
5. Customer Service that rocks your socks off. Have a question? Problem? Send an email and get a response from a real live human in less than a few hours. Not just any response. A personable, witty, friendly, humorous, “I’m your new best friend” type of response. THEY’RE AWESOME!
6. Complete Customization: Want to make your smugmug page look like you? You can completely customize everything to match the season, your branding, your even power it up into a fully functioning website.
7. No ads or spam. Need I say more. Let the pictures have the attention.
8. Hosts Video. More back-up! Hooray!
9. Hi-Res and RAW support. Upload the original size files at no extra cost and keep them on file. Now there’s support for RAW files for a small fee.
10. Pro Options: set your own prices and let smugmug handle the printing-shipping-packaging-credit card transaction, give print credit, coupon codes, market events, present client galleries, use as a website, watermark your images easily…
My typical work flow–even for my personal images–looks like this:
2. edit in Lightroom
3. export as jpgs to smugmug
I never have to worry about losing my images on my computer, and if I decide that I want to order new prints for family or my house, I have it all online already and place a super quick easy order that arrives with speedy gusto looking incredibly fabulous at a great cost.
Yes. I’m happy.
And Happy customers gladly share the news.
Brooke Snow is a Lifestyle photographer in Cache Valley, Utah. She grew up on a dirt road on the outskirts of town where her neighbors consisted of wild life…which of course made walking to the bus stop an adventure. She has been chased to school by a herd of 114 Elk, a skunk, charged by a Moose, and they once had a wild mink sneak into the living room. Sometimes life for her can be too exciting. She currently enjoys living in her suburb hundred year old house in a quiet neighborhood where so far the only “wild life” is the neighbors pigme goats that keep escaping.