When you have a product that is heavily based on visual content these days, it is only natural that you would want to use images that compliment your product to the fullest. After all, if someone is going to buy your product, they are probably going to Google it first before they buy it.
While it is great to have high-quality photos of your products, you should actually be encouraged to use free images online. Why? Well, oftentimes these free images are sourced from Flickr, one of the most popular image sharing websites in the world. And let’s be honest, if you’re going to be using images for marketing, you’re probably not going to spend a lot of money on camera gear.
Also, many image sharing websites feature images that can be used for free. However, the catch is that you have to keep the credits and share the same creative commons license as the original photographer. So make sure you are aware of these restrictions before you start using copyrighted materials for your product marketing.
The Best of Both Worlds
Nowadays, thanks to the internet, it is possible to have the best of both worlds—the freedom to use images for marketing and the access to a large pool of quality assets without having to pay for them.
For instance, let’s say you’re a fashion company and you want to showcase different hairstyles and makeup trends for women. You can actually get the photos you need for this use case from Shutterstock, one of the most popular image sharing websites in the world, and with proper attribution, it is totally legal. But then if you don’t want to keep the photos for your website, you can freely download them and use them for your own marketing purposes.
Similarly, if you are a company that creates and sells art supplies, it might be a good idea to get some stock photos of artists working with various materials. You can get these photos for free from iStock, another one of the most popular image sharing websites, but you need to keep the attribution and share the same creative commons license as the original photographer.
So, in short, if you’re looking for photos for commercial use online, you can find them almost everywhere for free, with proper attribution and a creative commons license. You just need to know where to look and how to get them properly attributed.
When it comes to pricing, you should always look at how much you’re willing to pay for the product you’re buying. After all, you’re the person who will have to pay the bills at the end of the day. So, if you’re wondering what the going rate is for a certain service or product, you can use online price comparison tools to get an idea of what others are paying for the same service or product.
In the case of images, you can use the same tools to compare the prices of different stock photos available from different websites. For example, if you want to compare the price of a product shot on Canvas with a stock photo of the same product, you can enter “canvas vs stock photo” into the search bar to get a list of websites that offer the two together. From there, you can compare the prices and select the best deal for your needs.
Keep in mind that the prices of different websites can vary. So, for instance, if you want to compare the price of a high-quality shot on Canvas with a low-quality shot from ShutterStock, you might have to pay a bit more for the former. But then again, the latter might be cheaper if you’re looking for something “cheap”.
Beyond the above, you should also consider the following when using images for marketing:
- Legal and ethical aspects of using copyrighted materials
- Choosing the right images for your needs
- Making a compelling case for why people should buy your product
- The power of copywriting
- Product demo videos
- Social media marketing
- Testing different types of ads
- Measuring the results of your campaign
- And much more…
However, before you put all your eggs in one basket and rely solely on online marketing to grow your business, it would be wise to try different types of marketing strategies and measure their effectiveness.
Hopefully, this post gave you all the information you need to know on the topic of free images for online marketing. From here, you can take your pick as to which one(s) of the above strategy(es) you will use to grow your business.