How can my small business manage a couple hundred thousand images, worked on by over a dozen people?
Our Story: I run Posterazzi.com, an eighteen-employee business based in Chester, New York. We’re the Web’s most complete poster and print store, offering fine art prints and posters, movie and music posters, mini prints, giclee prints, serigraphs, and related products and services. We offer over 500,000 titles for immediate delivery – more than any other online retailer.
We’ve been selling posters and art prints since 2007, licensing images from rights holders and publishers, then printing, selling and shipping directly to consumers. Over the years, the way we do business has been getting more and more digital, so we don’t have to stock as much inventory. We can print and ship on demand.
Why Mylio?: We use Mylio to manage and sync workflow for a large inventory of images over multiple work stations. It’s the hub for all our production, and the only tool we use to manage the images. I love the way Mylio backs up images to all our different devices. It makes me feel very secure that our images are backed up in that many locations.
Our Mylio Setup: One network-attached storage (NAS) device connected to fourteen work stations – a mix of Macs and PCs — each with an external hard drive backup, managing 200,000+ images.
How We Do It: We keep the source images for our products on the NAS, and use Mylio as the air-traffic control system to manage workflow for those images across the different work stations.
The images are organized in folders, by topic area. Each member of our production staff has a list of items to print for the day, and they’ll bring up those image in Mylio, and see what next step needs to be taken before printing.
They can tell what needs to be done through Mylio’s ratings feature; each image is tagged according to what needs to happen – editing, resizing, etc. We use all three ratings: colors, stars, and flags, and can sort the images by these ratings at any time. For instance, we deal with agencies or museums for some of the older fine art images from Van Gogh or Renoir. Because the digital image is coming from a physical piece, sometimes we’ll see a glare or other imperfection. In cases like this we’ll tag the image with a yellow rating, which means it’s good, but can be improved. By sorting all the yellows, and provider tags, we can see when we’ve reached critical mass for a particular provider, and ask them for a bulk re-scan.
Advice for New Mylio Users: Try to get your folder structure and workflow in order before you import into Mylio. It just makes the setup that much quicker and easier.
Likewise, decide up front which of your users will need which image size – thumbnail, medium, or full size. Not everyone will need full-sized images — customer service, for instance, isn’t editing anything; they just need thumbnails for their calls and emails. Optimizing this means you optimize your sync speeds. (We learned this the hard way by giving everybody full-sized images at first).