Pixlmob: Our Interview with Co-Founder, Matty Fisher

Pixlmob: Our Interview with Co-Founder, Matty Fisher

In this article, we’ll highlight an interview with one of the co-founders of Pixlmob, Matty Fisher.

If you haven’t already heard of Pixlmob, it’s a marketplace where real estate photographers and editors come together, to describe it as simply as possible. I’ll let my interview with Matty explain the rest.

Table of Contents

The Founding of Pixlmob

To get the interview started I asked Matty to share a bit of his back story, how he got started in the real estate photography industry, and to talk about the founding of Pixlmob.

Matty Fisher: “My business partner, Moses Nickerson, and I started a real estate media company in November of 2020. My background however was in tech startups and film/video. I had just moved back to Greenville, SC from NYC where I was working as a commercial director and producer.

This was in the height of Covid and all of my freelance jobs were drying up along with everyone else in the film industry. I had a family member that needed help listing a house on Zillow and I had all the stuff to shoot a short video, capture some photos, and even some drone shots.

During the process of helping them get the home listed, I realized I might be able to offer these services to realtors for some short term cash. I reached out to the only realtor I knew at the time who was an old high school buddy.

I didn’t realize it at the time but my friend was a pretty successful broker locally with over 300 agents. He immediately realized the potential we would have if we worked together and we ended up doing our first shoot at the end of 2020.

We quickly learned that people were saving a ton of time by outsourcing their daily editing load to people who worked in opposite time zones from the US. As soon as we started down that process we realized how difficult it is to find a trusted editor.

We went through several companies and were getting 5-8 messages a week from international companies that wanted our business. We didn’t know who to try and early on just didn’t have the time to do a bunch of tests or to dig through dropbox folders to look at portfolios.

Even then I didn’t know if they were actually capable of the work they were promising since I saw the same photos in multiple different editors portfolios.

With the time we were saving from outsourcing our editing we worked to systemize and automate our processes as much as possible over the next few months.

We hired multiple photographers and an admin to help as we grew, but we were still sending emails for every individual editing order.

We figured out ways to simplify that process more and more and then the thought occurred to turn it into an app for other real estate photographers who were managing multiple editing projects everyday.

It quickly became clear to us the power of connecting a marketplace of verified editors with a thoughtful post production workflow built specifically for real estate photographers with the real estate photographers themselves.

We knew it would be insanely helpful and that is were our first plans for Pixlmob began.”

A Deeper Explanation of Pixlmob

Next I wanted to get a deeper explanation of Pixlmob in terms of where the are currently and where they plan to take the service in the future.

I also wanted to bring up some of the common problems that we as real estate photographers face when looking for a longterm answering to outsourcing our editing since Matty had briefly touched on it in the founding story.

Me: “I think the struggle of finding quality and consistent editors will really hit home with our readers. It’s so time consuming, just like you said, that many people simply don’t have the time or patience necessary to iron out a great long term answer to outsourcing their editing.

Would you mind sharing a bit more about how you vet potential editors? I think that will be one of the most important aspects for most real estate photographers.

Also, if you could touch on how you’re able to keep editors for the longterm, that might provide an answer to the other major problem that we’ve highlighted already.”

Matty Fisher:We knew going in that ensuring the editors on our platform would actually be able to provide the services they claim would be essential to establish any trust with photographers.
Historically, photographers are bombarded with Instagram DMs and emails offering services and they just don’t know who they can trust. That’s a mission we took on from the very beginning.

When an editor signs up for Pixlmob, they have to complete a verification process before they can list any services or even appear on the marketplace. We test the editors on every service they wish to offer like HDR Blending, Flash-Ambient, Object Removal, Day to Dusk etc. with actual real estate photos.

The results are graded in-house by our team and each service is pass/fail. There is still going to be variance in style/skills between editors on the platform, but that’s where the image galleries and peer reviews can be a huge help when choosing an editor.

We even periodically review editor profiles and send test orders through the platform to make sure they are set up and familiar with the workflow.

Editors can always add more services later on or even re-try services they originally failed, but it’s still the same testing process.

We want to help the editors grow their business too, so if they are improving their skill set and have updated galleries and working hours, we are going to do what we can to help get them orders through the platform.

Editor profiles have custom generated link previews of their services for when they want to promote their work. We rotate the profiles on the marketplace so that all editors can receive visibility.

As we get more traffic onto the site, we are seeing more orders across more editors. Pixlmob is designed as a workflow solution for both the photographer and the editor.

We look at Pixlmob as much more then an avenue to find an editor you need. It’s fundamentally a workflow solution for your real estate photo post production.

We built a platform for real estate photographers to manage all of their editing orders and have a private activity feed for each edit. This helps to make it really simple to communicate about notes for a specific order or individual photo without getting it confused with other orders.

From the orders page you can keep track of all of your orders and see the status of each order when it’s submitted, in progress, delivered, or completed. 

One of the biggest services we provide on an ongoing basis is making sure the photographer gets what they pay for. We hold the money and only release it to the editor once the finished edits have been reviewed and approved.”

To me, this quote specifically stood out:

Pixlmob is designed as a workflow solution for both the photographer and the editor. We look at Pixlmob as much more then an avenue to find an editor you need. It's fundamentally a workflow solution for your real estate photo post production.

Let's Get Technical

It was clear to me that Matty had a strong grasp on the most important aspects of the real estate photographer and editor relationship. So I wanted to get a bit more technical about the editors themselves and their skill level.

Me: “Do you plan to bring on more editors and how do you go about getting editors to sign up? Do editors simply apply to be included, or do you actively search for quality editors as well? Also, do you offer editors any sort of further education opportunities to increase their skills?
For my business specifically, I would love to find an editor that I could work with consistently and could send tutorial videos to because my photography/editing process is relatively unique.
Do you have some sort of way for a photographer and an editor to develop a consistent relationship so they can grow together?”
Matty Fisher: “We get new editor applications everyday and we’re regularly reviewing editor tests that we receive. Right now, about 1 in 5 actually make it onto the platform to offer their services.
We do actively look for quality editors as well and have brought on teams like Beepec and PhotoUp in the past few months. We have also worked directly with photographers who want to work in the Pixlmob system with their existing editor for the benefits of the Pixlmob workflow.
Regarding the education component, we currently don’t have any education built into the system but it is definitely on our roadmap. As a two-sided market, we serve both photographers and editors and are doing whatever we can to create value for both sides.
For editors this means that we’re giving them a platform to expand their services and to add new revenue to support themselves and to expand their business.
We are planning to add other services to the platform later this year and offering training to allow our existing editors to offer those services. This is currently top of mind for us.
Our editors get suggestions from us on how to setup their profile to best showcase their skills and their availability. The ones who have been proactive and communicative with us have organically garnered a lot of usage from our photographer users.
This creates a bit of a snowball effect. People naturally want to work with the vendors that have proven trust metrics.
We have been actively working on promoting other trusted editors that have not had as many orders but are capable and have been diligent in completing their tests and profile so photographers can find them more easily.
Ultimately, someone will need to break the ice and leave a review for people to get an idea of their skills.
Regarding the relationship building component you mentioned, we’re designing a feature currently to allow photographers to create permanent preferences that will travel with you to every order and every vendor so you only have to enter it once.
Doing this will lead to consistent results from your regular editors. We have a favorites system so you can buildout your team of editors that you prefer to work with as well.
You may like one editor for HDR but may have another that you love for Virtual Staging or Day to Dusk edits. This way you can build a team of trusted editors that are ready at your fingertips.”

Closing Thoughts and a Sign Up Offer

As I mentioned before, it was clear to me that Matty and his team understand the major pain points in the photographer/editor relationship. The fact that he’s building a tool to address these issues is a very welcome development to this real estate photographer.

I will be writing a full review of Pixlmob and publishing it soon. I plan to get used to using the platform, tryout a handful of editors, and see if this is the editing workflow solution that we all desperately need.

For the time being, I can say that even just looking at the marketplace of editors on Pixlmob (above image) is a breath of fresh air. Pixlmob has taken the constant DMs, emails, texts, and every other way we are bombarded by editors and sorted them into a nice looking marketplace.

Any new users that sign up though this Aryeo affiliate link will get a $5 credit to try Pixlmob out.

Stay turned for the full Pixlmob review!

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About author
Matthew Digati is a professional Real Estate and Architectural Photographer. Matthew has worked as a Real Estate and Architectural Photographer since 2015 and has photographed properties and projects all over the United States.
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