Sprout Studio v1.5 Launch - It's all about your clients!

We released Sprout Studio v1.5 on Monday September 20th. Our team has been working tirelessly on this update. There are hundreds of improvements, tweaks, fixes and new features - literally over 500,000 lines of code changed. Here are some of the details about what we changed.

Photography is all about people. We’re lucky to be in a business that has relationships at its core.

So many people have to punch a clock working a 9–5, do something they don’t love doing to make a living. They live for the weekends, vacations and days off. As photographers, we get to connect with people all the time. We get to spend time with them for some of the most important moments of their lives. We get to be historians. We get to be storytellers.

And at the core, our stories are about people.

Your clients are everything. They are at the core of your business.

And the Sprout Studio v1.5 we just released on Monday September 20th is all about your clients.

We believe that your clients matter. We believe they are the most important thing to you. We believe that when your client has a great experience, you look good. And that’s when you truly thrive and succeed.

Our team has been working tirelessly on this update. There are hundreds of improvements, tweaks, fixes and new features. We all stayed until 12:30am on Monday night for the update and to test, respond to questions, and make sure the launch went successfully. Here’re a couple quick behind-the-scenes photos of some of our team from the evening.

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What’s new in Sprout Studio v1.5

I wanted to highlight some of the main new features and enhancements in Sprout Studio v1.5 here. I hosted a Facebook Live video yesterday where I walked through all of the changes in v1.5. You can view it in our Sprout Studio Facebook User Group here. We also made a series of videos describing all the changes individually, and you can watch them all here. Lastly, if you’d like to watch the highlight video, giving the 5-mile-high overview of what was changed, you can watch that here:

Otherwise, here’s a walkthrough of the main new features in v1.5 …

New Client Portal including multiple Shoots

When your clients log into their Client Portal, they can now see all of their Shoots in one place. From there, they can navigate into a particular Shoot, and then see everything about that Shoot – Galleries, Orders, Album Proofs, Contracts, and so on. From any page, they can click the “View All” button in the top-left corner to go back to the homepage of their Portal, where they can again view all of their Shoots.

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The Client Portal in Sprout Studio v1.5 received a significant update. Not only with this improved functionality but now it shows you off like never before. You can upload a “Cover Photo” that displays in the Client Portal in Settings > Business & Branding > Branding. If there is no Cover Photo chosen, it will display as a large block of your Branding color.

New-and-improved Client modal

There is a new-and-improved way for you to view your Clients in Sprout Studio – the new Client modal. This new view shows you the big picture for that client – who they are, what they mean to your business, and what they’re connected to. You can view all of their Leads, Shoots, and Orders, how they relate to those Leads, Shoots, and Orders. For example, in this new Client modal, you can see if they are the “Bride” or the “Groom” for a Shoot, how old a Lead is that they’re attached to, or whether they’re the “Billing Contact” or “Shipping Contact” for an Order.

In this new Client modal, you can also view basic analytics and stats about that Client to give you an idea of how they contribute to your business. Currently, you can see how old they are as a client, how much they are worth to you as a client, and a summary of how many Leads, Shoots and Orders they have.

New Client & Contact page

Within a Lead or Shoot, there’s a new Client & Contacts page, which replaces the old “Contacts” page. On the Clients & Contacts page, you can view all of the Clients and Contacts attached to that Shoot. There’s no real functional difference between a Client and a Contact; it’s just there for organizational purposes so you can more easily keep things organized. For example, the “Bride” is your client, whereas the DJ is just a Contact that’s related to the Shoot, so seeing them separated as such makes sense.

New way to control access for Clients

You can now control how a Client or Contact is related to a Lead or Shoot. For each Client and Contact attached to a Lead or Shoot, you can specify whether they are a Client or Contact, whether they’re the Primary Client (if they’re a client), and whether they can view the Shoot in their Portal or not. Every Lead and Shoot must have only one Primary Client (if you select a new Primary Client, the old Primary Client will be removed as the Primary Client). The only difference between a Primary Client and a Client is that when you use client variables such as “first name” (i.e. in an email, in a contract, etc.), it will use the Primary Client’s information for that.

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You can set the Client, Primary Client and View Portal toggles on the new Client & Contacts page, or from the Contact modal.

Client and Contact roles

A Client or Contact in a Lead or Shoot can have a Role (or multiple Roles) that indicate how that person is related to that particular Lead or Shoot. You can set the Role (or remove Roles) from the new Client & Contacts page within a Lead or Shoot, or from the Contact modal. You can manage all of your Roles from Settings > Organization > Customizable Lists.

New password functionality for Clients

Previously, you were able to set the username and password for a Shoot (on the “Access” page of a Shoot), and you could see the password there in plain text. With Sprout Studio v1.5, we moved the username and password away from the Shoot, because the login/username now belongs to the Client, who can have access to multiple Shoots. We also improved the security in Sprout Studio v1.5, and as such, you cannot view the password in plain text anymore. In fact, we built a whole new system for setting passwords for your clients, so it’s easier for your clients and more automated/hands-off for you.

The username is automatically generated when you create a new Client as their first name followed by their last name. If you want to change this, you can change it in the Client modal.

Now, when you create a Shoot (either through a Booking Proposal or the “Add Shoot” modal), there is a new toggle saying “email link to Shoot.” Turning this on will send your client an email (you can customize it in Settings > Communication > Automatic Emails) with a link to activate their account (if they’re a new Client), where they can choose their password. If they’re an existing Client, the link will allow them to log into their Portal.

Clients can also use the “Forgot Password” functionality on the Client Portal if they don’t remember their password.

If you’d still like to have the ability to set a password for your Clients (or reset it for them), you can click the “Set/Reset Password” button from the “User Actions” button in the Client modal.

Email recipient improvements

With all of the changes to the way Clients are related to Leads and Shoots, we expanded the functionality of Emails and Workflows to be just as flexible. Now, when writing an email or creating a Workflow, you can choose to send an email to a specific person or groups of people – All Clients for a Shoot or just Contacts from a Shoot with a specific Role, for example.

Gallery speed improvements

Galleries in Sprout Studio v1.5 are significantly faster. You’ll notice that both thumbnail loading and navigating between images are much more responsive, quicker to load, and overall just feels more snappy.

We also made significant updates to Galleries on mobile devices, so larger Galleries are much more responsive (and usable) on your iPhones, iPads, or any other mobile touch devices.

Beautiful new slideshows in Galleries

With Sprout Studio v1.5, your clients can enjoy a seamless slideshow experience of their gallery with the click of a button, and it looks beautiful. The experience we’ve created for them through Slideshows mimics that of a desktop photo browsing software – all on the web. We’ve pushed the limits of web technology and have unlocked a whole new way of creating dynamic, engaging and distraction-free slideshows. It shows off your photography in the best way possible and puts the emphasis on the image itself, making the medium of the slideshow and the computer screen almost disappear into the background.

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Clients can now hide images from the public

When your client is viewing their Gallery, they can now choose to hide specific images from the public. This allows them to have control over what their family and friends see, and lets them be completely confident with all of their images. This means they’re more likely to share it with pride, which means more eyeballs on your photography!

Photographer Gallery downloads

You, as the photographer, can now download images from a Gallery. Simply navigate to the Gallery in the back-end of Sprout Studio, select the images you’d like to download and click the “Download” button. Here, you can specify what email address you’d like to receive them at and which download preset you’d like to be applied.

Site-wide UI/UX overhaul

We’ve completely re-engineered parts of Sprout Studio with the v1.5 update. We’ve given Sprout Studio a complete overhaul as far as visual user interface is concerned. You’ll also notice how much faster it is, how much more smooth it is, and how much more consistent the design is. We’ve been even more intentional about every single pixel. Every button, every menu, every visual element within Sprout Studio v1.5 has been re-thought from the ground up.

Mobile improvements

Sprout Studio v1.5 introduces an improved mobile interface, so now Sprout Studio looks and works just as beautifully on your iPhone, iPad and other touch devices as it does on your laptop or desktop computer.

Setting re-architecture and new search

The settings section of Sprout Studio went through a complete overhaul with Sprout Studio v1.5. Not only did we re-organize it to be more intuitive, but we expanded on the design and functionality. You’ll notice how much quicker everything feels, how much more consistent the interactions are and how much smoother the pages load and sections work. We also built a search for settings, so you can easily find what you’re looking for with the click of a button.

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Adding pro-active payments to Orders

When you’re making an Order (either in the Add Shoot modal, in a Booking Proposal, or when creating a new Order), you can now add payments to that Order proactively. For example, if you’ve already received a deposit for a wedding and are making the Booking Proposal, you can add in the payment for that deposit, and it will automatically be added to their Order once they book with you. Another great use of this new feature is in transitioning Shoots over from other Studio Management software. In the “Add Shoot” modal, you can now add all the dates and payments you’ve received right then and there, and it’ll make the Order appropriately so you can start on a level playing field.

Choosing a Contact upon checkout

Anywhere your client pays – when they’re checking out of a Gallery, paying for an Order or signing a Booking Proposal – they will now have the option of choosing from the attached Contacts/Clients from their Lead/Shoot as the “Billing Contact.” This way, they don’t end up making a new Contact that is the same Contact as the one you already have for them. No more duplicate data! They can also update their Contact information in the Checkout modal now, too. Note: this feature is only available if the Client is logged in.

Sending Quotes in Sprout Studio

You can now easily create a Quote within Sprout Studio v1.5 and send it to your clients. Once your Client lets you know they’re happy with the Quote, and you’d like to Invoice them, you can turn that Quote into an Order, and the client can pay as they normally would with an Order.

Package descriptions in Booking Proposals

Sprout Studio v1.5 now makes great use of your Product/Service images and descriptions. We also added a new “Package Description” button when editing or adding a Package. In a Booking Proposal, your clients can now view “More Info” about a Package, Product or Service, and they’ll see a beautiful visual representation of that Package, Product or Service. This will help set expectations with your Clients as well as communicate value about your offerings in a way that makes your Clients more likely to buy.

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Sprout Studio v1.5

Sprout Studio v1.5 includes these updates that are all about your client and 100’s more. The team has been working tirelessly. There are literally over 500,000 lines of code that were changed in this update!

We believe in continuous and never-ending improvement, so this is still just the beginning for us. We are constantly listening to feedback and improving Sprout Studio.

This update – Sprout Studio v1.5 – marks a huge milestone in our growth, but we still have lots more we want to do. We have lots more in store and lots more that can help you be more successful in business.

If you’re not already a Sprout Studio user and would like to give it a try, we have a free 21-day trial you can check out over at www.GetSproutStudio.com.

Enjoy Sprout Studio v1.5!

The first all-in-one solution for photographers.

Sprout Studio is an all-in-one business success software for photographers, built by the team from SproutingPhotographer.com. It combines Studio Management software with Online Galleries, Album Proofing, Sales Galleries, Contextual Education and more.

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