Photo books aren’t always about just printing your pictures.  Most of the marketing we all are doing is focused on “print your beach pictures as a photo book” or “wasn’t that a great weekend, make a book.”  But sometimes, books are about storytelling.  Here’s what I mean…

From Joel Miller at MotoPhoto Avon: “Our best EQ story starts with a couple designing a book and ends with them adopting a baby.  Apparently for couples hoping to adopt children the best way to communicate with adoption agencies about what kind of environment and family the child we be adopted into is thru photo books.  Hopeful couples regularly print 20+ books to distribute thru the agency to tell their story.  We helped a couple design and print a book and were thrilled to know we played a part in making a family whole.”

From John Goodine at Elm City Photo: “Every year my two sons and I make our famous chili for the holidays.  And every year various friends and family members want the recipe.  So we decided to do a photo documentation called “The Chili Chronicles” and we’ve created a 6×6 pictorial book of the process.  This included photos and documentation of the three of us doing the shopping, donning safety goggles to slice onions, step by step ingredients, doing the Hakka War Dance to rid the kitchen of bad spirits, and revealing some secrets about Chili.  We all got some great laughs and some great gifts. ”

And, to get around to the title of this blog…this one is from me!  Every year my wife and I throw a big Easter shindig.  We usually have about 20 kids and how ever many parents that equates to these days.  Last year, my wife (the beautiful and talented Nancy) wrote a little story about the Easter Bunny, who came by ahead of time to get his plans set.  Nancy caught him in the act and wrote a little book about the adventure.  We printed out a bunch and handed it out to the guests, who loved it and have already requested the next installment this year.

Steve the Bunny

Steve the Bunny

Now, my wife is not a professional photographer and she can’t figure out the white balance, but I guarantee you won’t even be thinking about the photo quality when you get into the story (which is very clever and thought up entirely by Nancy, by the way) and try to guess who is in that suit!  And that’s my point!  That is our business, the story, and that’s what is important here.

You have to see the book.  Follow this link to download the order file and pdf: (If you visit the Marketing Tools > Sample Kits section of, there are directions on how to import this into Lab 50 for easy printing.)

The great possibility here is that you have a relationship with your customers and you can inspire them in different ways.  Profile a winning consumer idea in your next enewsletter, make story as a 4×4 flip book with store and product info on the last few pages, keep samples on your counter… share, share, share!

Any more creative photo book or storytelling ideas out there?  What are your customers putting in their books?  Comment on this blog, let’s hear some ideas!

(posted by Steve Jr)