By Devon Higgins

It’s morning in Grand Rapids, and the snow is piled knee-deep against the cars parked below the window of our U.S. office. Spring seems a long way off in this part of the world, but our insides are warmed by the fact that we are celebrating a new season here at PhotoUp.

It’s hard to believe that PhotoUp first opened its doors (or in our case, website!) offering real estate photo editing for hard working photographers around the world a year ago already. A year is a long time but in many ways it has just flown by! These past twelve months have had their ups and downs, and like with any new business venture, we’ve learned so much about what has worked really well, and also what hasn’t. We’ve taken these lessons to heart, because we are committed to making this work and staying true to the reasons why we started this service in the first place.

We are excited to say that this month marks a new season for PhotoUp! By the end of March, we will be re-launching our real estate photo editing service, taking what we’ve learned from the past months and the feedback from our clients and our editors to create an improved system moving forward.

You spoke. And we did our best to listen, and to solve the biggest problems we saw happening. This is what we heard.

Consistency

One of the most important things we’ve learned through editing photos for you over the past year is that being able to deliver consistent edits throughout our clients’ work is the most important thing we can do. In version 2 of PhotoUp, we went back to the drawing board in order to really hone in on how we could deliver the best and most consistent edits possible for each unique client. Our solution: dedicated smaller teams of editors armed with detailed and customized client profiles for each photographer we work with. We realized that the less hands that touch a batch of photos, the more consistency. The more we are able to train a small team of two or three editors on a particular photographer’s process, the more consistency. And the better tools we provide for photographers to relay feedback to their small team, the more consistency. Each small team of editors will be able to better focus on serving their handful of photographers really well, learning their style and preferences.

The Long Haul

The first year of PhotoUp was marked by offering an ‘on-demand’ system of uploading photos, meaning any photographer at any time could upload their photos for our editors to edit. We realized that this model was in many ways setting our editors up for failure. We learned quickly that each unique photographer’s preferences on how they wanted their final edits to look differed vastly, and that the only way we could learn what a photographer’s preferences was building relationships with each person we worked with over a prolonged period of time. So, in addition to providing dedicated editing teams, we are also moving to a membership model so that we can get to know the people we’re working with and helping them improve their business life over the long term.

It’s time to Share our Story

group of four people in the Philippines

Did you know that part of our story involves a city in the Philippines called Cebu? Or that by using our service, you are becoming a character in a story of positive change and impact in the under-employed parts of the world? This makes us so excited. We are proud of the success stories of the many photographers whose lives we’ve help change and businesses we’ve helped grow by taking editing off their plates. We are equally proud of the way we are able to provide meaningful employment to our staff, who work so hard on these photos, and the communities where they live, and this is something we are excited to start sharing with you in our re-launch.

Moving forward you can expect us to be a bit more active on this blog and our social media accounts (follow along via facebook, twitter, instagram) as we share more of our story and in March, our brand spankin’ new service will become live just in time for the spring thaw (fingers crossed!). For now take a look around our new website to learn more about these improvements that we have in store. We can’t wait!

Thank you does not even begin to cover it. We are so grateful for those who have come on this journey with us over the past year, and who have grown with us through it. It’s a privilege to earn your trust and to be partnering with you. Here’s to a new season!

Image above taken by one of our editors at PhotoUp, Ezra, of our core team at Tops mountain in Cebu this past January (and not a snowflake in sight!). We’ll be sharing more of our U.S. Team’s travels over to the Philippines soon.

Devon

Devon came to PhotoUp with a background in digital marketing and communications. With a BA in Marketing from Michigan State University and previous experience working with both big business and non-profits, Devon brings a well-rounded perspective to the team. Outside of PhotoUp, you can find Devon coaching and playing soccer, socializing in downtown Grand Rapids, or going on adventures throughout the great state of Michigan.

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