Your Input on Internet Marketing based Stock Photos

by Brian Tayler 10 replies
OK...
Anyone that reads my posts on a regular basis knows I don't market to the Internet Marketing community (and never have). I've marketed online since 1998 and marketing in the brick and mortar arena prior. So I really need some input here as I'm kinda flying in the dark.

I have a business partner who was talking to me about marketing (he runs a photography business) and wishes for me to help him start a new endeavor.

He has: consented photographs of people ranging from children to the elderly in all types of scenarios/dress/color/creed/etc.

The question here is if there is a market for photos of individuals for use by internet marketers. I know there are tons of stock photography sites out there... but a stock photography 'business man' looks just like a stock photography businessman. Meaning, his photos could be used for pen names, etc... which a) weren't wildly used and b) looked professional... but not fake or cheesy.

If you do believe there is a market for this... then what would be the best format for delivery? Membership site? All inclusive site (one time payment)? or DVD/CD delivery? Or something combined/different?

A copyright release would also be given out with every photo used. Options could include complete exclusivity to a photo (only used by one IM'er), a set of photos of the same person (and family, and pet, etc.); etc. He is pretty flexible with the possibilities... but I don't know where to guide him in his business planning yet.

The stock site for IM'ers was my idea... although I would assume he'd willingly let me guide him elsewhere if I could convince him of a viable business there.

Thanks for any input and critisims. (Photography isn't my arena... I only do it as a hobby... so I can't help with questions too much in that area)

Thanks,
Brian
#main internet marketing discussion forum #based #input #internet #marketing #photos #stock
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  • Profile picture of the author alexanderberson
    My friend is doing that.
    He spend $5000 to get the site build.
    Overall , approx 10,000 pics from people, nature, all kinds of stuff
    I believe he has membership fee, but the site is down right now cuz he is making changes to it.

    But i do believe could be profitable business
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    • Profile picture of the author CSwrite
      Hi Brian!

      There are actually quite a few options here.

      1. PLR pack - one time fee
      2. Do more of what sites like Corbis do with this -

      A. different prices for different sizes
      B. option to get them on CD/DVD
      C. pay per image

      3. What I think I would do personally is a combination of all of these options - offer the ability to get one-offs, but mark them up like Corbis does. Offer better discounts for groups of images, and then offer a master fee where they get everything. Make everything available on CD/DVD as well, particularly the master collection.

      That way you can appeal to all buyers, whether they want one, or one hundred images.

      Edited to add: A membership option that would allow X amount of downloads for X amount of dollars would work as well. Clipart.com and other sites do very well with that, especially for those that are in the betweenies - need more than 10, less than all of them.

      Hope that helps!
      CS
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      • Profile picture of the author Brian Tayler
        Alex,
        Thanks for the response. Has your friend had success that you know of prior to bringing the site down?

        CS,
        Excellent ideas. I didn't think of a masters collection until you brought that up. Reminds me of StockMusic.Net's StockMusic.net - Royalty Free Music with an Edge

        Thanks again,
        Brian
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        • Profile picture of the author jrocha
          Hi Brian
          I'm the opposite as photography is my business.

          I'm not sure I can help much but I wonder if there's a confusion about the copyright issue.

          It's not a copyright release that is needed but a Model Release.

          For a picture of a person to be used commercially in an advert for example or on a website - the model must sign a release form specifying how the picture can be used.

          Most stock agencies provide generic Model Releases or you can look at photographers organizations for examples.

          All the best

          John
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          • Profile picture of the author Brian Tayler
            Originally Posted by jrocha View Post

            Hi Brian
            I'm the opposite as photography is my business.

            I'm not sure I can help much but I wonder if there's a confusion about the copyright issue.

            It's not a copyright release that is needed but a Model Release.

            For a picture of a person to be used commercially in an advert for example or on a website - the model must sign a release form specifying how the picture can be used.

            Most stock agencies provide generic Model Releases or you can look at photographers organizations for examples.

            All the best

            John
            John,
            Thanks for the information. In my original post I said "consented photographs." I should have clarified. He has sets of photographs with signed consent/model releases to use on the internet (or in print). The copyright release would be given to each person purchasing the photographs.


            Thanks,
            Brian
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            • Profile picture of the author Sean A McAlister
              Hi Brian,

              Although there would probably be a market for Internet Marketers I think that
              a bigger market would be for Corporate Media Players.

              If he has a large stock of photo's I would get in touch with some Brand Managers and CMO's. I realize that some of the fortune 500 companies have in house crews but a large portion of them do not.

              Also, I would consider Ad Agencies.

              I friend of my Aunt and his wife vacation all over the place...he is a doctor. They like photography as a hobby and got some great shots of Italy, Rome etc. He ended up selling the photo's to an ad agency spcializing in travel.

              I realize a different beast but something to think about.

              You may b able to secure some membership sites or monthly contracts with some of these big players.

              just some idea's

              Sean
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  • Profile picture of the author Jesus Perez
    Originally Posted by Brian Tayler View Post

    OK...
    The question here is if there is a market for photos of individuals for use by internet marketers. I know there are tons of stock photography sites out there... but a stock photography 'business man' looks just like a stock photography businessman. Meaning, his photos could be used for pen names, etc... which a) weren't wildly used and b) looked professional... but not fake or cheesy.
    I definitely feel there is a market for "homey" photos that aren't quite pro...and not quite amateur. And I think it's a great idea. Before you go spending buku dollars on a store, check out the PhotoStore script.
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    • Profile picture of the author GuruGazette
      Hi Brian,

      Keep in mind that my reply is based on my experience only, and each person has at least some differences in their experiences.

      I sell most of my stock photos through online distributers like ShutterStock, Dreamstime, and IStock. Early this year I started rebuilding my main website to sell direct as well, and that's starting to take off slowly.

      I've watched this topic closely in the "Internet Marketing" industry - primarily here in the Warrior Forum - for two or three years now, trying to gauge when the market is mature enough to be ready for something like you suggest. And I've attempted launches two or three times here, with very little (and in some cases zero) response.

      Here in the Warrior Forum the range of expertise, skill levels, and business models is huge. On one end we have many brand new completely broke people who may not even know photos online aren't free for any use, and on the other end we have big guns who hire out everything to graphic designers. We also have a large number of people who try to do/get everything online with absolutely no investment of any kind. So spending money - even very small amounts - on professional photos is still somewhat "alien" to many people here.

      And then there is the photographer end. Most "professional" studio and portrait photographers are shocked, frustrated, and sometimes outright angry to find out that the majority of their work will not suffice for stock photography. There is a huge difference in style and end product from taking someone's portrait to creating a people photo which can be used in advertising.

      Couple of examples:

      This is an excellent "made for stock" style photo which has a wide variety of uses:




      This one however, while extremely good as a studio portrait, doesn't do well for generic stock uses:



      So your friend may find himself having a hard time selling any of his existing photos, if they weren't created with stock in mind to begin with.

      A side note to you: The "copyright release" phrase you're using is wrong. He may have a MODEL release, but he would NOT want to give away the copyrights to his photos. That makes it impossible for him to earn future money with them, and could stir up a major can of legal worms where people photos are concerned. This is also why he would NOT want to offer PLR rights to any of his photos.

      Hope that helps a bit,
      Kathy

      BTW Jeff: Thanks for thinking of me!
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      • Profile picture of the author JeremyL
        Hi Kathy,

        Just read your post. Insightful take on the stock photography biz. Brian mentioned the stock music (above). Do you have any thoughts or insights with respect to Brian's original question but substituting stock photography for stock music?

        Just wondering if there's is a need in the IM world for this... Music for Promo videos etc.

        Thanks
        Jeremy
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