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  • Donald Simpson

Make Your Business Card come alive

Updated: Mar 1

Hand your business card to a potential customer and ask them to quickly download a free App to their mobile device (steps at the end of this blog). Then ask them to point their device at the photo on your card and magically their mobile device displays up to a 2.5 minute custom video you created right on their device. But this is not limited to business cards. It could be photos located almost anywhere (e.g. business card, stationary, email, link, photo hung on wall, Facebook, Instagram, projection screens, etc.). And you are not limited to having only one photo/video on your card. You could have several, each representing a different gallery or facet of your business.


Photo on your business card (low Res here)

Using the App you download you can just point your mobile device at the business card photo above and instantly a video will play on that mobile device. The photo below is a hybrid video or slide show (not clickable in the blog) you make that you want to trigger when they point the app at your photo (laughing Zebra).


Here is the process. It is really quite simple:

  1. Take a photo you would like to be your trigger photo (the one that fetches the video or slide slideshow).

  2. Post process the image as you normally would and place it in a folder to keep everything related to this project in a simple place where you can find it.

  3. Making the hybrid video or slideshow could be done with most any video editor. I use iMovie because it is free and it has everything I need.

  4. Now select some video clips, voice overs, photos, graphics, text and/or music and place them into this same folder appropriately labelled.

  5. Open your video editor and import all of the items from step 4 that you intend to include in this video or slideshow

  6. In the video editor you can trim the video clips any way you like.

  7. Now you are ready to begin making the video or slideshow

  8. Start dragging the items to the timeline in your video editor in the sequence in which you want them displayed

  9. Next step is to decide how long you would like each frame to be displayed on the screen.

  10. You can also create a transition to occur between each frame with a myriad of effects and timing.

  11. Last step will be adding some music which is usually done on a separate track located below your time line.

  12. Be sure your music is royalty free or that you have legally purchased a sound track. Just fit this music where you want it to start and finish trimming as you need.

  13. Preview your product within your video editor and repeat any steps above until you are happy with your product.

  14. Save the file in your folder as an .MP4 file.

Not nearly as complicated as it may sound. Now you are ready with your photo and hybrid video or slide show to upload it to Bay Photo in San Francisco to create the finished product:

  1. On the Bay Photo website you will see a link to create a project called "Live Portrait" so select it and watch a few short videos that explain the process.

  2. Following their instructions simply upload your photo and video/slideshow to Bay Photo.

  3. There are a few choices you can select from but they are very simple.

  4. Last step is to check out. The cost is $18.99 but that is a one-time cost.

  5. Usually within two business days Bay Photo completes the process and notifies you that your project is ready.

Now it is time for you to test the process before using with customers:

  1. Print or display your trigger photo somewhere.

  2. Download to your mobile device a free App called "Live Portrait"from your App Store.

  3. NOTE: this is the same App you will ask your customers to download if they wish to see the video or slideshow behind the scenes on their devices.

  4. After installing the App simply put the rectangle that appears on your screen to outline your target photo on your Business Card (best to hold your iDevice in a landscape (horizontal) position to scan).

  5. Within 1-2 seconds you should feel a vibration of your phone along with some magical swirls and your video/slideshow should begin playing. Make sure your sound is turned up if you have music or voice overs in your project.

  6. You can now move your iDevice to comfortable position to watch. It no longer needs to be pointed at the photo.

  7. If all looks good you are done.

You can now print your trigger photo anywhere you would like people to be able to trigger the video or slide show from.


People are absolutely amazed with this product and it will set you above others and help increase your brand. No more lost or thrown away business cards. People will keep them and show their friends and family.


The laughing donkey on my fake business card above has a Live Portrait Hybrid movie behind it. If you want to see and feel what this looks like do the following:

  1. Download "Live Portrait" (free) from your App Store to your mobile device.

  2. Tap the App icon just loaded onto your mobile device.

  3. The first time you try to use this it will ask for access to camera and speakers - accept those permissions

  4. You will see a rectangular shape on your screen, it is a scanner outline. Simply put the rectangular shape over (a few inches away) my zebra on this screen.

  5. In just a moment you should see white swirls appearing on your screen and then a brief vibration.

  6. The video and music should start playing on your mobile device. Once it starts you no longer need to hold the rectangle over the donkey and just watch it.

  7. After you have done this once you have the App properly installed and you will no longer be asked to do step 3.

  8. At this point , assuming this was your business card, you could ask your customers to do these steps and point them at the picture on your business card.

This will impress those who see it and help to establish your brand. Remember the photo that they scan with this App is not just a photo on your business card. It can also be a framed photo you hang on a wall, a postcard you send, letterhead, email, web page, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Projection Screens, Zoom Calls, etc.


Have fun!!!


Bonus: point your iDevice, configured with "Live Portrait", at the photo below and you will see a very different video than the zebra. It will be a very brief introduction to me and then a slide show of some of my landscape photography.






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