The production of engaging content is something of a war of attrition. So many factors can get in the way of the creative process and create something of a buffer between what you want as an end result and what you’ll likely end up with.

If you are putting together promotional material of whatever type and format, you’ll have in mind just what you are looking for. But, then a myriad of issues can end up plaguing the process: creative differences, budgetary constraints, or time concerns.

It’s true that many brands and companies will look to outsource their advertising efforts to a relevant firm. But, clearly, by doing so, they are paying professionals to produce a product that will, hopefully, fit your guidelines.

A great many choose to go it alone or opt for in-house activity. In these instances, your end product can be greatly assisted by a great stock photo library, one that carries polished visuals covering a wide spectrum of moods, industries and genres and offered at a reasonable rate, preferably with subscription models that suit your own specific requirements.

So What Are Stock Photos?

Stock photos are images that already exist, generally in large databases, and offered on a paid subscription. The photos are taken by professionals in the field who have aligned themselves with the relevant company offering their assets.

It’s important to note that stock photo services don’t just offer just photographic material (in its most basic sense). They might also offer illustrations, graphics, and other supporting materials, such as stock footage or music.

The industry’s best and most cost-effective brands offer all these facets in either individual packages or as part of one all-encompassing bundle.

When it comes to the use of stock photos, it’s useful to consider the many clear benefits of doing so and to help you navigate your way to the right service for you. Here are 5 good reasons to take into consideration.

Speed

If you are being sincere, then one key part of the process may be speed and the need to produce something in a relative hurry. Sometimes you don’t have the time to find the perfect photographer to put together the ideal shoot. A good source of quality material will significantly reduce the timeline of your projects, which is particularly effective if a deadline is looming.

As well as the speed aspect, when it comes to the production of the material you can also happily take into account that the imagery resource is there, directly in front of you, and doesn’t require additional time waiting for individuals to process, edit and deliver the photos to you.

Ease of Use

Sometimes you are putting together a concept to push a product or service, maybe it’s your own or that of a client, and it requires a great deal of thought process. This could be because the specifications are hazy or not well thought out.

A good stock photo library will offer you a wide range of options, organized into intuitive categories in such a way that aids the creative process. Indeed, many great ideas have come out of the searching process alone, especially if the way a database is organized is intuitive.

The sheer size of the photo libraries on offer goes some way beyond what any individual photographer could provide via their portfolios, and this makes your search for the perfect imagery all the more likely to succeed, thus avoiding the need for making a compromise.

Cost

Another honest reason many would offer if asked about their reasoning behind signing up with a stock image/footage resource is cost. Perhaps you, or your client, don’t have the budget to set up a promotional shoot or maybe the product or service is somewhat unknown as a commodity, and as such isn’t one you’d like to use too much of your company budget on.

Here there’s no need to hire a photographer or a set, and you, of course, save the resource of time that is associated with that plan of action.

Flexible

An additional benefit to stock photos as a resource is that they can be made to form part of an existing promotional endeavor or reused to make them more in tune with your vision.

The imagery can be altered, edited and re-purposed to your heart’s desire and all without having to apologize to a photographer who may be watching on in dismay.

Licensing

A good stock photo and footage provider will offer you a service that includes a multi-purpose license that clears for any use you see fit. In some cases, these licenses are without a time limit and can be used again and again or kept in perpetuity.

Street Photography