Stock photography is a great way to get started in the world of visual storytelling. It’s also an excellent tool for engaging your audience and driving traffic to your business—but it’s not without its share of myths.
If you’re just getting started with stock photography, it can be difficult to separate the facts from fiction. This article will debunk some common stock photography myths and explain how to use them in your marketing efforts.
Table of Contents
Myth: Stock photos aren’t authentic.
There’s a common misconception that stock images are somehow fake or staged. In fact, they’re real people in real situations. Stock photos are not actors; the people you see on stock photo websites are just regular folks who have been photographed by professional photographers, and their photos have been uploaded to the site for use by other businesses and individuals.
Stock photographs are also not computer generated; they’re taken with cameras capturing real objects and environments in natural light. And finally, stock photographs aren’t generic: if an image appeals to you as an individual user of a website like Shutterstock or iStockphoto, it will appeal to somebody else, too.
Myth: All stock photos look the same.
Stock photos are not all the same. There are a lot of different kinds, and it’s hard to generalize about them because they can serve so many purposes.
- They’re not just for magazines and commercial projects. Stock photos can be used in any context, including marketing materials (think social media ads), personal projects (like DIY websites), or even print publications such as books or newsletters.
- They aren’t just for big companies. That’s right—stock photography is available to everyone at every level. This means that you don’t have to be an established brand with deep pockets to market yourself effectively through imagery that captures your audience’s attention while also reflecting your brand values.
Myth: It’s expensive to use stock photos.
One of the most common misconceptions about stock photography is that it’s expensive. This myth stems from the fact that many think of stock images as like traditional works of art: they’re one-of-a-kind and, therefore, extremely valuable. But while it’s true that some stock images can cost hundreds or thousands of dollars, there are many others that are available for just pennies per photo. Stock photography can save you money in several ways.
- It saves you time and energy when you’re looking for images yourself by giving you access to millions of photos at once.
- It saves space on your hard drive if you’re working on a project that requires lots of images from different sources. Your resources will be saved because the company that owns the photo has already paid for storage costs and may even have image compression software built-in, so they use less bandwidth than uploading individual files would require.
Myth: You can’t easily get help with picking stock photos for a project.
Stock photo sites have a lot of information to help you choose the right photo. For example, Shutterstock has guides that explain what makes an image successful and how to use search to find relevant images. You can also browse suggested photos based on your keyword searches, which will give you ideas about what types of photos other people are buying on that site.
If you’re more technical-minded, tools like Adobe Lightroom and Aperture allow you to search all your files in one place and narrow down your selection based on criteria like whether or not an image is available for commercial licensing (if it’s free). You can also head to platforms like depositphotos.com/stock-photos/christmas-tree.html and get inspiration for your next photography project.
Myth: Only magazines and other publications use stock photography.
It’s true that stock photography has traditionally been used in the publishing industry. But that doesn’t mean it’s only for magazines, newspapers, and other printed publications. In fact, stock photos are used in many different industries, including retail, e-commerce websites, and marketing campaigns.
Stock photos are even popular with small businesses that want to stand out from their competitors without spending a lot of money or time on graphic design. In fact, many small businesses use stock images on their websites because they’re affordable yet professional-looking. You can find a wide variety of images related to your business’ industry or niche market, so you’ll have something relevant no matter what kind of products or services your company offers.
Stock photography is a great way to add visual representation to your project. It’s important to understand the limitations of stock images, but they shouldn’t deter you from using them. In fact, the benefits far outweigh the drawbacks. Stock photography is a great option if you’re looking for a way to add visual representation to your project. It’s easy to find images related to your industry or niche market, and they can be used as-is or customized with little effort. The best part is that it won’t cost you an arm and a leg.