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Winter 2012 Personalized Profits

Personalized prints deliver impressive profit margins.

When Tom Meyers personalized direct mail for customers, he wondered if the same software system could be put to more direct retail use. Seeing that personalized gifts continue to sell well in the marketplace, he launched MyQuickPrints, a concept that creates personalized photo prints in just minutes. “We have a software system that does the customization, so it was a natural extension to use that machine [for a new concept],” Meyers says.

MyQuickPrints, based in Atlanta, can be an add-on service or a stand-alone concept for a specialty retailer, says Meyers, the Chief Information Officer.

How it works

The procedure for photo use works in a manner similar to stock photo sites such as iStockphoto. The retailer purchases photo credits from the website, which can be redeemed as customers buy prints.

The photos, which are copyrighted, range from sports scenes to baby and children’s designs.

The customer is shown the picture options and chooses the one he or she likes. The retailer then selects that image from the website’s image gallery and personalizes it with the requested name. After showing the customer the preview of the image to approve, the retailer downloads and prints it. “From beginning to end, including framing, it takes about 10 minutes,” Meyers says. “It’s instant gratification for the buyer and instant profits for the retailer.”

Prices are determined by the individual retailer, but Meyers suggests $45 to $50 for an 11”x 14” single matted print. Additional options such as framing are offered to the customer (these cost $65 to $80 for a single- or double-matted, framed print). Customers can also purchase a digital file to use as a phone or computer desktop image for about $15.

Fifty photo credits are $400, or $8 per digital download, so a retailer could make $42 on a single print.

Gifts for any occasion

Due to the variety of the imagery offered, MyQuickPrints’ target audience is very broad.

Meyers says that MyQuickPrints stands out from the competition due to the quality of the proprietary software and personalization. “We have the expertise in the design/personalization end which is a specialized kind of skill set. We can do effects like motion blur and unique personalization beyond standard text like spelling names out with images,” Meyers says. He adds that the personalization is so seamless that the pictures look incredibly authentic. “[If you look at] our Roger Federer tennis print, [it's hard to tell] which areas have been personalized. [The pictures] look seamless,” Meyers says.

Mall launch

Mall kiosks are a new venture for the company, which has about 200 locations at gift shops and custom-frame stores. “We’re in the process of marketing to mall kiosk operators,” Meyers says. “In today’s economy, we thought it would be the perfect business model for a kiosk operator to get a new revenue stream without any inventory or startup cost, other than a printer.”

“A retailer just needs an Internet connection; they can brand it and set it up as they want,” Meyers says. MyQuickPrints provides sales sheets and suggestions on matting and framing products, but retailers can buy any items they choose.

MyQuickPrints has an aggressive growth plan. “We’re hoping for 1,000 locations on board by the end of next year, and 2,000 within two years worldwide,” Meyers says.

For more information, please visit

Kristin Larson Contino

Kristin Contino is a freelance writer and copy editor based in Philadelphia. She writes for a variety of print publications and blogs, and also covers women's fiction for

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