Spectra Getting Started Guide


Are you new to StudioPlus Spectra? Start here! Complete each step of this checklist to successfully set up Spectra for your studio and then use it to train your employees.

TIP! Use the Print button above to print this checklist.

Getting Started

Subscribe to the StudioPlus blogs! The Support blog is where you'll get the latest support information for StudioPlus products. In the Company blog, Matthew Hunt, company CEO and founder, will keep you informed about the overall direction of the company, product road maps, new product releases, and general industry insights. The Learning blog offers tips and tutorials to help you maximize Spectra in your business.
Bookmark the Getting Help Overview page on our website. Visit this page often to stay in the loop on the latest training, product information, and updates for Spectra.
Read Getting Help and Spectra Features in this guide. Use the comparison chart to familiarize yourself with the features available in your version of Spectra. Highlight the ones you feel will have the biggest impact on your business.


1 - Installing Spectra

Let's get started by installing Spectra. Whether you're running Spectra on a single workstation or twenty, we'll keep it simple!

Download the Spectra installer from the Downloads page on our website.
Install Spectra using the instructions outlined in Installing Spectra.
If you plan to use a NAS storage device, read the "Network Attached Storage (NAS) and StudioPlus Spectra" knowledge base article for some important recommendations.


2 - Protecting your Data 

Imagine what you would do if you lost years of valuable client data. Backing up your data regularly is key to building a successful business.

Read Database Backup Best Practices as you consider your options for backing up your database.
Read the DataSafe Quick Reference Guide to help you set up DataSafe.
  Subscribe to DataSafe for safe and secure online backup protection.
Read Protecting Your Data to learn how to:
Use Spectra's Database Utility.
Back up your Spectra data using the built-in Backup tool.
Maintain your Spectra database by using the Compact and Repair tool.
Also recommended:
Watch the Database Utility training video.
Read the Database Utility topic in the Spectra Online Help.
  Watch the Control Center training video.
  Read the Control Center topic in the Spectra Online Help.


 3 - Setting Up Your Preferences

The Preferences Wizard is the easiest way to set up your basic preferences in Spectra. It''ll have you up and running in no time.

Set up the basics with the Preferences Wizard. Read and follow the instructions in Setting up Your Preferences.
Also recommended:
Watch the Preferences Wizard training video.
Read Setting up the Software with the Preferences Wizard in the Spectra Online Help.


 4 - Finding Your Way Around Spectra

Before you jump in and start using Spectra, take a few minutes to get familiar with the workspace.

Read Finding Your Way Around to:
Learn about the Spectra home page.
Find out what the menus do.
Learn how to set up shortcuts.
Also recommended:
Watch the Navigating Spectra training video.
Read the Home Page Overview topic in the Spectra Online Help.


5 - Working with Clients

Your clients are key to your success, and Spectra is the perfect tool to help you build strong and dynamic client relationships.

Read Working with Clients to learn how to:
Create a client.
Find a client on the Clients hub.
Import a list of clients.
Also recommended:
Watch the Clients training video.
Read the Clients section of the Spectra Online Help.
Watch the Importing Clients training video.
Read Importing Clients in the Spectra Online Help.


6 - Scheduling

It's time to book some sessions and appointments in Spectra!

Explore the calendar and practice some of the calendar tips listed in the Scheduling section of this guide.
Read and follow the instructions in Scheduling to:
Learn the difference between a session and an appointment.
Create a session from the calendar using the Scheduling Wizard.
Find the session on the Sessions hub.
Create a session or appointment from an existing client (instead of from the calendar).
Also recommended:
Watch the Navigating the Calendar training video.
Watch the Scheduling Wizard training video.
Watch the Sessions training video.
Watch the Appointments training video.
Read the Calendar section of the Spectra Online Help.


7 - Basic Communication & Marketing

You'll be amazed how Spectra can help you communicate with your clients and improve your marketing.

Read Basic Communication and Marketing in this guide to learn how to:
Use phone calls to keep track of client conversations.
Set up Spectra to send email.
Send a basic email to a client.
Find a client's communication history.
Set up SMS text messaging.
Enroll in a StudioPlus SMS text messaging plan.
Read Getting Started with StudioPlus SMS Text Messaging
Also recommended:
Watch the following training videos to learn more about using Spectra for your marketing:
Marketing Database Overview
Form Letters
Phone Calls
Setting Up Email 
Emailing Through Spectra
Read Setting Up Email in the Spectra Online Help.
Read Setting Up SMS Text Messaging in the Spectra Online Help.
Read the Communication Wizard topic in the Spectra Online Help.
Read the Form Letter Builder topic in the Spectra Online Help.
Read the Messages Hub topic in the Spectra Online Help.


8 - Financial Tracking

Bringing home the bacon! It's time to set up the financial tracking portion of Spectra so you'll know exactly how profitable your business is.

Price List and Invoice Setup

Read the "Price List" and "Sales Tax" sections of Financial Tracking to learn how to:
Set up a simple price list.
Set up your sales tax.
Also recommended:
Watch the following training videos for detailed instructions for setting up packages and a variety of other types of products:
Invoicing Setup 1 - The Price List
Invoicing Setup 2 - Advanced Pricing (Spectra Standard and Professional)
Invoicing Setup 3 - Invoice Options
Read the Pricelist section of the Spectra Online Help.
Read the Company Preferences - Invoicing topic in the Spectra Online Help.

Create Invoices

Read the "Invoicing in Spectra" section of Financial Tracking to learn how to create an invoice.
Also recommended:
Watch the Creating Invoices training video.
Read the Invoices section of the Spectra Online Help.

Process Credit Cards

Read the "Processing Credit Card with Merchant Warehouse" section in Financial Tracking to learn how to process credit cards payments in Spectra.
Apply for a credit card processing account: Cayan™ (formerly Merchant Warehouse) in the United States OR eWAY™ in Australia, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom.
Also recommended:
Read the Payments and Refunds section of the Spectra Online Help.

Accounting Integration

Read the "Accounting Integration" section of Financial Tracking to learn how to:
Set up the accounting link.
Integrate with QuickBooks, Simply Accounting, or MYOB.
Perform your end-of-day close out.
Also recommended:
Watch the Setting up Spectra for Accounting training video.
Watch the End-of-Day Wizard training video.
Read the Accounting section of the Spectra Online Help.


9 - Digital Workflow

Now for the fun stuff! Spectra is an amazing tool that will help you automate your entire digital workflow.

Digital Workflow Setup

Go to Digital Workflow in this guide and read the overview of Spectra's digital workflow.
Read the "Setting up the Digital Workflow" section to:
Set up your basic digital preferences in Spectra.
Explore the Workflow hub.
Also recommended:
Watch the Digital Overview and Setup training video.
Read the Digital Workflow Overview topic in the Spectra Online Help.
Print the Digital Workflow Reference Guide and use it as your guide to all the tools and shortcuts available in Spectra's digital workflow.

Capture Images

Read and follow the instructions in the "Capturing Images" section of Digital Workflow to:
Find a session on the Workflow hub.
Import sample images into a session.
Also recommended:
Watch the Importing Images training video.
Read Stage 1 - Capturing Images in the Spectra Online Help.

Sales Presentation

Read the "Sales Presentation" section of Digital Workflow to learn how to:
Prepare a sale presentation.
Present images to a client.
Also recommended:
Watch the Sales Presentation 1 - Setup training video.
Watch the Sales Presentation 2 - Presenting Images training video.
Read Stage 2 - Sales Presentation in the Spectra Online Help.


10 - InSpiredByYou.com

Set up the online extension of your studio, directly into the homes of your clients.

Read how InSpiredByYou can benefit you.
Take a video tour of InSpiredByYou.
Sign up!
Also recommended:
Watch the InSpiredByYou training videos.
Read Getting Started With InSpiredByYou.
Read the InSpiredByYou section of the Spectra Online Help.