Monday, June 6, 2016

New CloudAlert Options

StudioCloud has updated CloudAlerts with the following new functionality.

New Quick Method To Setup CloudAlerts For Sessions

StudioCloud now supports creating CloudAlerts from the Calendar Type window. This option also supports pre-setup CloudAlerts for session reminders, thank you's, etc.

Click here for a tutorial on how to use the new Setup CloudAlerts For Sessions method

New Session Scheduled CloudAlert

CloudAlert emails and text messages can now be automatically sent out a specific time after a session is created.

Click here for a tutorial on how to setup CloudAlert Session Messages

New Session Confirmed CloudAlert

CloudAlert emails and text messages can now be automatically sent out a specific time after a session is confirmed.

Click here for a tutorial on how to setup CloudAlert Session Messages

New Session Cancelled CloudAlert

CloudAlert emails and text messages can now be automatically sent out a specific time after a session has been cancelled.

Click here for a tutorial on how to setup CloudAlert Session Messages

New Lead Created CloudAlert

CloudAlert emails and text messages can now be automatically sent out a specific time after a lead has been created. Once the lead has been converted to a client or a prospective client they will not receive additional lead CloudAlerts.

Click here for a tutorial on how to setup messages for new leads

CloudAlert Email Template Change

CloudAlerts now use the same email and sms text message templates that are used elsewhere in StudioCloud. Previously, CloudAlerts required that a slightly different template be used.

Click here for an overview on how to setup CloudAlerts

If you would like to add the ability to have clients automatically receive personalized session reminder email or text messages, personalized thank you emails, happy birthday or anniversary emails or text messages and more, sign up for CloudAlerts for $10 a month.

Get CloudAlerts

Friday, May 20, 2016

Tip: Background Image



Did you know you have always been able to customize the look and feel of StudioCloud by changing the background image?  Don’t like boring gray? Icons aren’t your thing?  Click on the small pointer at the very top of your screen to take away the icons.

To select a new background image go to Settings, under General Settings, and click on the "Change Background Image"button.  This will allow you to choose a new background image that is refreshing and inspiring to you and your brand.

Quick Tip: Do a quick google search for any type of free background image.  There are thousands to choose from!  Search for purple background, hardwood background, bright blue background, etc. The options are endless! It is best to use a solid image since it will stretch to fit your screens configurations. 

Friday, May 6, 2016

Tip: Spam Prevention

With the latest release of StudioCloud you can now add a ReCaptcha to any CloudForm.

Above is an example of a ReCaptcha
A ReCaptcha is used to prevent spam by requiring that a person selects the "I'm not a robot" checkbox. This checkbox will then perform various calculations to verify that an actual person clicked the checkbox rather than a computer.

StudioCloud recommends that a ReCaptcha be added to CloudForms that can be accessed from a website.

The above ReCaptcha can be added to any form by going to the Actions tab and clicking on the "Add ReCaptcha" under the "Spam Prevention" header.

Click here for a tutorial on how to use CloudForms.

If you would like to add the ability to have clients sign contracts with eSignatures, collect valuable information before a sitting, capture leads from your website and more, sign up for CloudForms for $10 a month.

Get CloudForms

Friday, April 29, 2016

Tip: CloudForms On The Go


Using StudioCloud's new CloudForms features, you can save custom CloudForm's to your iPhone or iPad homepage.

This feature lets you integrate CloudForms automation directly into your mobile experience.

Here are just a few ways that people are using the new features of CloudForms.
  • Track leads by entering their contact info into a CloudForm from your phone. Then let the CloudForm automatically send them a welcome email with a "Book a Session" Personalized CloudForm in the welcome email.
  • Schedule a client directly from your phone using a private CloudForm that shows your available sessions.
  • Have a client eSign a contract from your phone and have it email them the signed contract.
  • Have a client pay a deposit from your phone and have it automatically create an invoice for the client.



Monday, April 11, 2016

New: Personalized CloudForms

StudioCloud is excited to release our new CloudForms update called Personalized CloudForms. Personalized CloudForms are forms that are associated with an already existing client or with a session/appointment/event. The personalized CloudForms will pre-populate the forms and let the customer update them to meet their needs.

Here are some examples of when you could use personalized CloudForms.

Lead Tracking With Personalized CloudForms

In the welcome email that you send to a lead, you want to have them verify the contact information that you entered for them and have them correct it if a mistake was made. You can do that be sending them a personalized CloudForm.

Verify Session Details Using Personalized CloudForms

When you schedule a session, you want to send an email to the client which contains a personalized CloudForm pre-populated with the session start date and start time. They can confirm that the session information is correct by selecting a checkbox in the CloudForm.

Verify Contact Info From Tablet or Ipad

You can have a customer verify their contact info from a tablet or ipad using a personalized CloudForm.

Automating Booking A Sales Session Using Personalized CloudForms and CloudAlerts

After a session has been completed, you want to automatically have a CloudAlert email sent to the client, two days after the session, with a link in it to a personalized CloudForm. Their information will already be pre-populated in the CloudForm, and they can schedule a sales session directly from the CloudForm.

You can do all of the above items and more using Personalized CloudForms!




Monday, April 4, 2016

New: Automatically Set Up Pipelines, Templates, etc.

StudioCloud has added a new setup option to the Setup Wizard. This option will automatically set up your StudioCloud account with the information needed to quickly get up and going for your type of business.

New or existing clients can use these features. If you go under Settings, Setup Wizard, you can use the automatic setup without compromising your current data. Please be aware that if you have already set some things up yourself, this may create some duplicates. You can always go in a do a group operation to delete any items you do not want to use.

Below are some of the features that the setup wizard can automatically setup for you if it applies to your business type.

Automation Associated with Scheduling

The setup wizard will automatically create calendar types and calendar sub-types for you and will also create email and text message templates for the calendar types, so that when you schedule a session, appointment, or event it will automatically email or text message the customer.

You will be able to preview and customize the emails and text messages before they are sent to a customer.

Automated CloudAlert Emails and Text Messages

The setup wizard will automatically setup email and text messages for you. However, you will need to activate the CloudAlerts before any messages are automatically sent to customers. You can also go in and further customize them.

Click this link to learn how to activate CloudAlerts.

The setup wizard will setup the following items if they apply to your business:

  • Set up emails to be sent a few days before the session or event to remind the client of it.
  • Setup text messages to be sent a few hours before the session or event to remind the client of it.
  • Setup email and text message thank yous for the sessions or events which will include a link to a CloudForm where the client can schedule their Sales Session from the CloudForm.
  • Setup Birthday and Anniversary emails and text messages
Lead Tracking

The setup wizard will automatically setup lead tracking with client pipelines. The client pipelines include a welcome email and text message template when the lead is initially scheduled. You can go in and further customize these.

Event Tracking

The setup wizard will automatically setup event tracking for tracking what needs to be done before or after an event using event pipelines. It includes having an email sent to the client, with a personalized CloudForm, which will require that a client eSign a pre-built contract when a wedding session is created. You can also set it up to take a deposit at this point.

Order Tracking

The setup wizard will automatically setup order tracking for tracking the overall status of the items that a customer has ordered. It also includes email and text message templates for when an order is either shipped or ready for a customer to pickup.

CloudForms

The setup wizard will automatically setup a Contact Us Form that can be added to your website. The contact us form also includes an email template that will be automatically sent to the customer when they fill out the contact us form.

All of these items can and should be further customized by you, to work for your business and personal branding. This is meant to set things up, so you can visually see how StudioCloud works, and see how to get your workflow started. It is meant to reduce the learning curve and to get you up and going more quickly!

Click here to add CloudAlerts, CloudForms, or CloudBooking to your StudioCloud account

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

New: HTML CloudBooking/CloudForms Update!

With the latest version of StudioCloud we have rebuilt and redesigned the CloudBooking to be html based so that it can be accessed from any browser based device such as a smart phone, ipad, tablet, or internet browser.

The New Integration Options
In addition, we have also integrated the CloudBooking directly into the CloudForms. This powerful new integration lets you create unlimited forms where each form can have a unique online booking scheduling system associated with it.

On top of the above features we have also integrated invoice creation, contract signing, and payment options into the forms as well, which provides even more seamless CloudForm options.

In addition, when a client pays a deposit or makes a payment in a CloudForm their credit card will automatically be saved so that you can, if you so desire, setup a payment plan that will automatically charge their saved credit card on the desired plan dates.


CloudForm Examples

Do you have a situation where you want to run a special with a lot of short term photo shoots and have the clients pay ahead of time? 

No problem. Just create a CloudForm for it and send it out in an email blast to your clients. Whether they are on their computer, phone, or tablet they will be able to book a session and pay for it right then.

Do you want to be able to send a form to a prospective wedding client, have them fill out the form to collect information for the wedding, schedule the wedding date from the form, eSign the wedding contract, pay a deposit for their wedding, and setup a payment plan to automatically charge their credit card for the rest of their balance due?

No problem. You can utilize any combination of these features depending on your processes. Just create a CloudForm and set it up either with a pre-selected wedding package or a list of wedding packages they can choose from. Then select to either have a payment entered as a fixed amount regardless of the package or as a percentage of the total package amount they selected. Finally select which contract you want to have sent to the client when they fill out the form.

To add in a payment plan all you need to do is edit the invoice that was automatically created for the client when they filled out the form and follow the instructions at the bottom of this blog post to add a payment plan to the invoice.

The credit card they used to fill out the form was automatically saved for you so you can, if you want, use that credit card for the payment plan.

Do you need to book different sessions on different days?

No problem. You can create one form where the client can select their desired session or you can create two different forms with the desired session locked into each form. If you need different information for each session then creating two different CloudForms is the way to go.

Do you have a situation where a customer wants to book a specific photographer?

No problem. Just create a CloudForm for just that photographer or, if you want, for all of the photographers and have the client select their desired photographer. If this is a situation that is only done on a pre-request basis just create an email template with the CloudForm link in it and email the CloudForm to a client whenever it is requested.

Do you want to schedule a client on your calendar from your iphone internet browser?

No problem. Just create a CloudForm just for you and bookmark it in your iphone internet browser. Then just pull up that page and fill out the form. It will only let you book sessions when you are available so you don't even need to look at your calendar.

Do you want to hand a client an iPad and have them confirm their information, select a package and have them pay for it on the iPad?

No problem. Just create a CloudForm for it and book mark it on the iPad's internet browser. Then just hand the iPad to the customer and they can fill out the rest.

Do you want to do all of the above items at the exact same time?

No problem. You have unlimited forms and the ability to schedule in all of the above manners as well as many more.

How Do You Get Started

To add invoice creation, payment/deposits, or online booking to a form create a new form or edit an existing form and click on the actions tab followed by the "Add Invoice, Payment, Online Booking" button.

This will open a window which will allow you to customize the invoice, payment and online booking options as well as the wording and look and feel of the online booking fields.

Tutorials

Click here for a tutorial on how to create cloudforms.

Click here for a tutorial on how to add the html online booking to a cloudform.

Click here for a tutorial on how to setup payment plans to automatically charge a saved credit card.