As a marketer in Alberta, Canada I've been using DreamsTime for about three years. The first few photos I purchased where for proposals and temporary marketing and advertising pieces.
After buying over 400 photos on this site, I would like to pass on a few tips that would motivate me to buy many more of your photos.
(1) Consider the possible uses of your photography
websites, video, online ads, posters, business cards, etc.
(2) Consider how you can make the best use of each of those mediums. For example, I recently shot a video for a locally owned restaurant. On one of the videos I would have loved a set of stock photography of a sub sandwich being built. If such a set of photos existed, I would have purchased them all (10 pictures of each step of the sandwich build).
(3) Offer multiple dimensions / framing. Not all photo uses require a 4x5 ratio. Take 5 or more angles or imagine how the shot could be used and offer a 1x5 ratio or something similar. There is a massive shortage of banner and horizontal ratios on this site.
(4) If your actor is not an actor then don't ask him or her to act, it looks really cheesy.
In my next article I will present more tips on how to take pictures that people want. Visit my marketing website to see some Dreamstime photos in use.
Hi Maigi. Good points on banners and sales. I'm just one buyer so what I say should only be seen as such. I would buy precomposed banners because it takes me a lot of time to do design work (I'm pretty slow). I like your idea of having full frame images/banners that be be cropped. So the photographer really has to be conscious about framing.
Great tips! Thanks. About banner ratios - would it be good actually to upload images with banner ratios (1x5, right?), or would it be better to compose full frame image so that it could be cropped to banner ratio? I think most of designers who use stock photos for banners, compose such banners by themselves and just use some or several stock photos for banners. Or are there clients who would just buy precomposed banners and use them just like they are? Banner creation is a pretty interesting area, I love it. But stock photography seems to be more raw material market place, where you can buy elements for your design work, than finished product store. So if one puts lots of effort to banner creation, will he find clients on this market? I don't know, maybe?
I agree with Gmargittai. I think it would be very nice to have some dialogue between buyers and sellers. It would be really helpful to hear more advice from a buyer's perspective, and I think it would probably spur me to be more creative in my photography as well. Thanks so much for taking the time to share your point of view with us.
Tip for Illustrators: Look at the most viewed and most downloaded photos. If possible, do an illustration of them. There are lots of reasons a person would buy a photo and some of those reasons also work for illustrations. Currently, I am looking for a land-based oil rig illustration but can't find any that are suitable for my project.
Hi Razzy1492, Yes, I use illustrations as well. Here is a website that I am developing www.albertamarketingstrategy.com . The top banner is made of 2 photos and two illustrations. I will add 3 or 4 more photos to finish the design.
My photo to illustration purchase ratio is about 4:1
Nice tips, I hope more and more buyers come here and make suggestions, and we eager to know where and how our pictures are used. Of course, what Markstout and Colette6 said is quite reasonable, we cannot control the quantites of the same content. Very good article, write more please.
I have to second the reader who commented that hopefully DT will ease restrictions on images in a series. I am finding lately that if I shoot an image of apple pie and one is of the whole pie and one is of a slice, I could face rejection of one of the two images for "similar content". This makes it difficult to provide buyers with different angles and views, which I believe is useful. It is also one more nail in the coffin profitability for microstock shooting.
Arne9001 I am from the marketing industry as well and I can see why you would like a set of images of a sub sandwich being made because to buy in a traditional way, ie from a Professional photographer this set would probably cost in the region of multiple thousands of dollars and you would only be able to use it once unless you paid for ongoing usage fees.
But there is some interesting tips as well in your post.
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