Announcing User Voice – A New Way to Make Suggestions!

Here at StudioPlus, we’ve always placed a high priority on the suggestions we receive from our clients, clients just like you. You’re on the frontline and our products are your products. Those suggestions are terrific ideas, and we wish we could implement every one. Unfortunately, we have limited resources and can’t possibly put into operation every suggestion received.

The StudioPlus User Voice is your opportunity to make your own suggestion, and to also review the suggestions made by others. Best of all, you get to vote on the suggestions you think are most important to be added to the StudioPlus Products!

To view the StudioPlus User Voice, simply click here. Starting in Volume 2 Service Release 2, you can also click Help>Make a Suggestion and you’ll be taken directly to the User Voice Page.

We’ve already populated the User Voice with many of the recent suggestions that we’ve received. If you’re buzzing with an idea on how to improve our products, AND if you don’t see it already on the list, then now is the perfect time to add your input!

Also, make sure you VOTE on the suggestions you wish the most to see added!

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2016 Volume 2 Enhancements – Other Goodies

Along with Perfectly Clear, Online Booking and Web Forms, we’ve come up with additional new or improved features we call Goodies!

  • For each enhanced Custom Text field, you now have the ability to convert it into a drop-down pick list instead of a normal text field. Use this new feature to make data entry faster and to ensure data integrity by preventing free-typing.
  • Price List Promotional Items - A new Price List Promotion feature has been added. Be even more creative with your marketing choices since you now have the ability to make Promotional Items not combinable with any other offer.
  • Promotional Types – We’ve added two new Promotional Types for Price List items:
    • Dollar Amount Off Per Item. For example: a coupon giving $2 off each 8×10.
    • A new Combination Promotional Type. For example: you can now combine multiple Promotional Items, such as 10% off your entire order AND $2 off each 8×10.
  • Cash Drawer Reconciliation – a new Cash Reconciliation form simplifies the process of counting cash in the Cash Drawer at the beginning or end of the day, ensuring that you always keep in balance.
  • Department Calendar – This new ability allows you and your staff to view Departments on your Calendar. When chosen, it will auto select all user’s calendars from that department, giving you an overall view of everyone’s schedules.
  • Session Status – We’ve added a new Session Status Result field, which can be based on certain Session Statuses. For example, the Session Status may be not completed and the Session Result can be child crying.
  • Printing – You can track Reprint Reasons for Rendering. Now, when reprinting an image from an invoice, the user can be prompted to enter a reason why, which lets you track the causes behind the need to reprint.

Remember – virtually every new enhancement comes at the request of one of our clients, just like you. If you have a suggestion for a future release, just email it to We’re working to supply the product features you require and desire!

Also, click here to take a look at the Release notes for Volume 2 for a complete list of the awesome tools we’re providing, including a report of the fixed issues.

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2016 Volume 2 Enhancements – Web Forms

Web Forms – another of our most requested and anxiously anticipated features!

Web Forms expand your ability to communicate with your clients, gathering information that makes a difference in how you meet and exceed their expectations.

As a reminder, a Web Form is a form or questionnaire that your client can access on the Web. All information that gets entered instantly shows on their records in myStratus. Some common uses include:

  • Questionnaires
  • Online contracts
  • Client information forms
  • Event planning guides
  • Shot sheets
  • Surveys
  • Feedback Forms

What’s New?

With this new release, we are excited to announce you can now use Web Forms as a Contact Us page! Embed the Web Form as an iFrame on your website to generate new leads. After your customer completes the Contact Us form, a new client record is automatically created in your database—without you having to do anything. What a time saver!

We’ve also provided you with the ability to customize the look and feel of your Web Forms to blend seamlessly into your website or brand.

Your feedback is also responsible for the addition of Web Form Merge Fields, allowing you to include a link within an HTML email or Form Letter, allowing your client to access their private Web Forms without having to login.

If you are using myStratus Professional or Enterprise, try out Web Forms today, free of charge!

Remember—we’ve designed Web Forms and other unique tools specifically for the needs of photographers. We’re continually working to supply the product features you require and desire!

Click here to read more about Web Forms

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2016 Volume 2 Enhancements – Online Booking

In 2015, we introduced Online Booking for myStratus, one of our most requested and anticipated features. Our customers absolutely love Online Booking, praising the efficiency and ability to allow clients to book their own sessions online. We asked for your feedback, then utilized those suggestions to improve the usage and appearance of online booking in 2016 Volume 2.

This new version gives your clients even more abilities, while dramatically simplifying the time necessary for you to set up and manage your online booking, giving you more time to do the things you love.

First, let’s recap the Online Booking features already introduced. Your clients can visit your website, select one of your Session Types, view a list of available days, choose a desired time slot, and then book the session. They can either log in with an existing account or create a new one. New accounts will automatically create a new client record in your myStratus database. An invoice can also be automatically created for the session during the booking process (optional). Finally, you can require a payment or deposit, if desired.

What’s New?

Now you can use Online Booking to book appointments as well as sessions. This means sales presentations or wedding consultations can all be booked direct from your website. In addition, your clients can now cancel or reschedule sessions or appointments on their own—online.

We’ve also made it much simpler to bulk create Time Slots. We don’t like manually creating time slots either, so we’ve automated this process. Use our new tools to bulk create or bulk copy your time slots. Or better yet, set up an automated process to let myStratus do it for you on a weekly basis.

A ton of new properties have been added, allowing customization of the look and feel of online booking to blend with your business website, making it appear completely integrated.

Online Booking also works great with the StudioPlus Mail service. Automatically email your customers a confirmation, inviting then to confirm their session/appointment with a single click – without tying up your time or your clients over the phone!

In short – we’ve designed the Online Booking tool specifically for the special and customized needs of professional photographers, just like you! If you are a subscriber to myStratus Standard, Professional, or Enterprise, try out this great feature today for no extra cost!

Click here to read more about Online Booking

Click here to watch our Online Booking Training Video 1

Click here to watch our Online Booking Training Video 2

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2016 Volume 2 Enhancements – Perfectly Clear

Do you spend valuable time retouching? Present images to your customers on a short turn around? Upload images online but find yourself low on time to make them pop off the page?

Perfectly Clear is an automatic image correction tool, superior to filters and enhancers, as it corrects photos pixel by pixel, replicating how an eye gathers light. Perfect for today’s digital age, this software captures the vibrant colors and natural clarity you see with your eyes. Perfectly Clear’s patented, automatic corrections save countless hours by completing enhancements in seconds, thus eliminating costly hours in the editing room.

New in Spectra and myStratus Desktop 2016 Volume 2, Perfectly Clear now offers great new enhancements:

  • Teeth Whitening
  • Face Contouring
  • Blemish Removal
  • Shine Removal

The above enhancements are in addition to Perfectly Clear’s already present features:

  • Exposure
  • Depth (Contrast)
  • Skin and Depth Bias
  • Fidelity
  • Vibrancy
  • Skin Smoothing
  • Sharpening
  • Skin Tone
  • Light Diffusion

Perfectly Clear is the ideal solution to increase efficiency, save money, increase sales and reduce the stress of running a busy photography business. Use it as a valuable tool to remove the most common image issues created by digital cameras, diminishing wrinkles and blemishes automatically, while ensuring that the key details such as the eyes and hair are preserved. Perfectly Clear allows you the option of automatically retouching images for a sparkling sales presentation. After receipt of an order, you have the option to go deeper with PhotoShop integration, resulting in your best product every time. Take already great images over the top and wow your customers!

To celebrate the new improved Perfectly Clear plugin in Volume 2, we’re offering up to 33% off the annual plug-in fee. Now, get Perfectly Clear plug-in for $99 for single user or $199 for multi-user licenses.

It’s Perfectly Clear this solution would be the most efficient AND creative use of your time.

Click here to order now!

Click here to read more in our documentation.

Click here to read more at (the creators of Perfectly Clear)

Check out these great before and after images!

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New 2016 Volume 2 Released!

I’m thrilled to announce the release of Spectra and myStratus 2016 Volume 2! This release includes great new features, requested by clients just like you, to help build and track your business along with increasing your efficiency. Saved time really is money in your pocket!

Over the next week, we’ll be publishing several blog entries to highlight what’s new with the software. To get a jump start, click here to read the full What’s New in Volume 2 page.

The 2016 Volume 2 release is available free of charge to all Spectra clients with a current maintenance plan and to all myStratus subscribers!

Spectra users –click here to start your Spectra 2016 Volume 2 download!

myStratus users will receive an email detailing the date of their upgrade!

Click here for the full release notes.


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Spectra 2016 and myStratus 2016 General Availability

Today I’m thrilled to announce that both Spectra 2016 and myStratus 2016 are available for general release!

All Spectra users with a current maintenance plan can upgrade today. All myStratus subscribers will automatically be upgraded during the next two weeks. If you are a myStratus subscriber, we’ll send you an email with the date of your automatic upgrade. You can let us know if the date doesn’t work for you and we’ll change it.

The 2016 upgrade includes many commonly requested features by you, our users. This year we’ve included a brand new ability to print your images in-house, new digital workflow enhancements, new promotion item capabilities (including Groupon), new family member birthday triggers, new web forms for myStratus clients, plus much more.

Get started by reading the Release Notes to learn about all the great new features as well as some important items that have changed in the software. Also, read my previous blog entries which describe many of the 2016 enhancements.

Spectra users…Click here to start your Spectra 2016 download!

myStratus subscribers…Keep an eye on your email for the date of your upgrade!

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Preview Release of Spectra and myStratus 2016!

I’m thrilled to announce the “Preview Release” of Spectra and myStratus 2016! Today’s release includes great new features, like:

All our enhancements come from the suggestions we receive from you, our clients! So we say, “Thanks! Keep your great ideas coming!”

All development and testing is complete with this “Preview Release,” meaning the new version is ready to use. However, we’ll be using the upcoming weeks to finish up documentation and training videos before announcing the official “General Release.”

Spectra Users
Spectra 2016 Preview is available to all Spectra customers with a current maintenance plan. Click here to read the full release notes. Click here to download.

myStratus Users
myStratus 2016 Preview is available to all myStratus subscribers on a per request basis. To upgrade, please click here to send a request to our support team. We will follow up with you to schedule a time to upgrade your account. Click here to read the full release notes.

As always, if you have any problems, please contact our support team. We’re here to help. Enjoy the new upgrade!

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2016 Enhancements – Other Goodies

With every new release of our software we do our best to include as many of your requests as possible. Over the past week I’ve introduced many of the “larger” features we’ve included in the upcoming 2016 version. Today I get to share with you some of the “smaller” (but still highly requested!) features you’ll also find in the 2016 release.

We’ve added…

  • The ability to select the initial status for sessions that are created through online booking.
  • Options to automatically generate pre-production orders (similar to how production orders can be automatically created).
  • A new option for session number configuration that includes the session date and the client’s last name and first name (for example, “20160115-MerritCheryl”).
  • The ability to copy an invoice or estimate.
  • The ability to re-link an invoice from one session or client to another without having to re-create the invoice.
  • A new option to hide price list item groups.
  • The ability to set the start and/or end date(s) a price list item is available to be used. This feature can be very helpful with the new promotional items.
  • The ability to assign all incoming non-reply SMS text messages to a user and/or department.
  • A new option to limit which IP addresses a Stratus Web user can log in from.
  • Many new custom fields for preproduction and production orders.
  • The ability to use the following new fields in filters, column choosers, emails, and letters:
    • Session – Primary Resource (Location)
    • Session – Date Confirmed
    • Appointment – Primary Resource (Location)
    • Appointment – Date Confirmed
    • Client – Last Call Date

We know many of you have sent in requests during the past year. We truly wish we could address every single one of your suggestions! Nevertheless, as long as all of you (the best customers in the world!) continue to send in your requests and suggestions, we commit to doing our part by continuing to innovate and improve our products, keeping them the best in the industry! Stay tuned for the official Preview Release of Spectra and myStratus 2016.

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2016 Enhancements – Web Forms

Today, I’m thrilled to introduce a powerful new feature being added to our myStratus cloud-based software in the 2016 version! This much requested feature is called “Web Forms.” A web form is a form or group of questions you can upload for your client to access on the web. Some common uses for web forms include:

  • Questionnaires
  • Online contracts
  • Client information forms
  • Event planning guides
  • Shot sheets
  • Surveys
  • Feedback forms

With myStratus, you can design your own web form using text boxes, drop-downs, checkboxes, date fields, and more. You can design your own layout and then link fields on the form to actual fields in your Stratus database! Published web forms have a direct connection to your database. That means information from your database can be displayed in the fields on a client’s form. It also means your database will be immediately updated with any changes when a client submits a form. So, for example, if you link your Stratus first name and last name client fields to fields on your form, the current first and last name for the client will be shown in those fields on their web form. If you link a field with no information, it will be blank. This makes contact information forms really easy for your clients. All they need to do is fill in any missing information and make changes to outdated information. They won’t need to re-enter things they’ve filled out many times before. In addition, fields that shouldn’t be modified, such as a session date, can easily be locked.

Here are some key points to keep in mind regarding this first version of Web Forms:

  • Web forms can be created for clients and sessions. Note: A client or session must already exist in your database in order to create a web form for them.
  • Web forms are NOT designed to be a “Contact Us” form on your website.
  • Once a web form is designed, it can be created for individual clients/sessions manually, automatically, or with triggers. In any case, you would then email the client with their login details and a link to the form.
  • Web forms are accessed by the client through their InSpiredByYou portal. They will need to log in with their username and password to see their forms.
  • You are not limited to the fields currently available in myStratus. You can create an infinite number of fields to track as much information as you want!

We’re very excited to bring you this new feature! It expands your ability to communicate with your clients and gather information that can really make a difference in how you meet and exceed your client’s expectations.

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