Exclusivity - My Ten Reasons

posted on 18th of may, 2011

I became a Dreamstime exclusive contributor in August 2010. The results have been very good – way beyond my expectations. There was no one single reason why I became an exclusive Dreamstime contributor - it was a combination of factors and I have listed below the ten most important:

1. Editorial Images – the majority of my sales volume and revenue come from Editorial photos. I therefore cannot work with an agency that does not handle editorial photos.

2. Higher Commission & Best Levels System - Dreamstime has the highest commission percentage and the best commission levels system. If you view stock photography as a long term business venture then it makes sense that your best photos get more and more valuable over time.
3. Titles – 50 characters. I like the length of Dreamstime titles – It allows me to include several key words and phrases that I will also use in the description and the keywords. In this way I can make sure my images have maximum visibility.

4. Description – 756 characters. I know you are not meant to create unnecessarily long descriptions. However particularly for editorial images this is in my view essential. I dislike photos with short descriptions. If I am going to buy a photograph I want to know as much as possible about it and the photographer. Some agencies don’t have a description at all – they only have a title!

5. Keywords – a limit of 70 words. This more than some other agencies. While I don’t normally need to use all 70 it is definitely useful on occasions.
6. Collections – I’m sure some other agencies have a collections system or similar. However Dreamstime has the best and most flexible system. Most importantly it really works – a range of high quality and well maintained image collections will definitely increase your sales.
7. Contributors are valued – it feels like Dreamstime run their business for the sole benefit of the contributors. Of course this is not true – where would be if were not for the buyers. However the fact remains that via the blogs, forums, regular announcements and a range of prizes and bonuses we contributors feel more valued than at other agencies.

8. Copy data from another image – the ability when submitting new images to copy the title, description, categories and keywords from another image and then edit as required. This is a huge time saving for me.

9. Referral Program - Another nice thing about Dreamstime is that they still have a referral program for the photographers you are able to send there. With the referral system you will receive 10% of whatever your referral earns. This could really add up if you are lucky enough to refer a prolific photographer.

10. Limited Time & Resources – photography is not my day job and therefore I have limited time to develop and maintain my portfolio. It takes a lot of time to upload, describe, keyword, and resubmit my pictures. Then there is the constant editing and updating of my collections, viewing the blogs and message boards and collecting the payments each month. I simply don’t have the time to do all that with multiple agencies so I became exclusive with the agency I was most successful with and the one I like using the most – Dreamstime.

I trust this information is of assistance to you and I look forward to viewing your exclusivity thoughts, tips and tricks.

Comments (22)

Posted by Midosemsem on June 08, 2011
Nice Article..
I just want to add (better position on search engine). It make a big difference

Posted by Voytekj on May 30, 2011
Thanks for sharing....
Posted by Vincentho on May 29, 2011
Thanks, you've aspired me to go exclusive come 50, and i'm working hard on it!
Posted by Yelo34 on May 24, 2011
Excellent Blog. You enlighten me in some ways and I appreciate it a lot. Thanks.
Posted by Thaerjoseph on May 24, 2011
Nice pictures and good article!
Posted by Hotmidhun on May 20, 2011
Something which is of interest to me especially when I had been asking this question around. I had recently posted a blog article asking whether I should go Exclusive or Not? I think you have a valid point in terms of time.. For me, I am almost deciding to go exclusive, cos your 10th point is my number 1 priority. But also, DT sometimes demotivates me telling my best and most time consuming creative photos as too niche oriented, and hence rejected... where I feel it would get sold if just seen (maybe my optimism).
Posted by smartview27 on May 20, 2011
Posted by Taylorgracephotography on May 19, 2011
Great article! Gives me determination to hit 50 uploads and to do better than my best!
Posted by Neilmachin on May 19, 2011
Excellent article. You could be employed by dreamstime in their publicity department! Reading it has certainly given me fresh incentive to pull my finger out and get up to 50 submissions so that I can become exclusive myself and qualify for the higer commission.
Posted by Mariaam on May 19, 2011
Very good reasons! Exclusivity is great!
Posted by Anhong on May 19, 2011
Good article.
Posted by BCritchley on May 19, 2011
Pretty much agree totally :-)

Posted by Vwimage on May 19, 2011
Couldn't agree more. Definitely worth going exclusive. Great article.
Posted by Tamarabauer on May 19, 2011
Well said and I totally agree!
Posted by Xiaofeng123 on May 19, 2011
this is one side,another side,DT also need to improve more.change and change .
Posted by Serjedi on May 19, 2011
great article!
Posted by Nero67 on May 19, 2011
Interesting article!!!
Posted by Joezachs on May 18, 2011
Yes the referal program is a good one and I am earning some extra money from that.
Posted by lzf on May 18, 2011
nice pics
Posted by Photoncatcher on May 18, 2011
great article,it's useful.
Posted by Egomezta on May 18, 2011
thanks for sharing your experience... I totally agree with you.
Posted by Iwhitwo on May 18, 2011
Well said Nigel!

Comments (22)

This article has been read 2080 times. 5 readers have found this article useful.
Photo credits: Nigel Spiers.

About me

I got the photography bug in 2002 when I purchased my first digital camera - a Casio point & shoot. However I really became keen when in 2006 I bought my first DSLR - a second hand Nikon D70. More recently I have added images of musical instruments, recording equipment and Christmas themes isolated on white backgrounds. In the last few years I have also taken photographs of my home town Christchurch, New Zealand, the damage caused by three devastating earthquakes and the rebuild of the city.

Christchurch, NZ

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