Data tells us that images are valuable currency for Facebook, blogs and even online newsrooms. Not only do they drive engagement, they add some much needed color to entities that might otherwise be a bit dry.
But thanks to copyright laws, finding those images online is easier said than done. Throw in the new Google policy that penalizes websites for copyright violation, and image sourcing becomes an all-out struggle. If you want to steer clear of the long arm of the law (and Google), stick to legal means of image sourcing. Here are a few recommendations from our team.
Purchase Stock Photos
There are a number of options out there for purchasing images, both through the subscription model and on a per-image or bundle basis. Prices and quality vary by service, but Shutterstock, iStockphoto and VectorStock are each solid options.
Browse Creative Commons
If stock photos aren’t in the budget (let’s face it: they’re expensive), see if you can find what you need under a Creative Commons license. To find Creative Commons images, head to Flickr’s Advanced Search tool and scroll down to the bottom to check off Only search within Creative Commons-licensed content. As you browse images here, be sure to check what type of Creative Commons license and requirements you’re dealing with; some are attribution only, some are non commercial and so on.
Make and Take Your Own
Ideally, you’ll have designers and maybe even a photographer on staff. But this is the real world, and that stuff is unbelievably pricey. If you’re tasked with creating visual masterpieces but don’t have the technical skills to back it up, check out Infogram for infographics and Visual.ly for charts. Last but not least, with careful composition, good lighting and a sepia filter, iPhone photos aren’t half bad either.
What are your favorite resources for digital marketing imagery?