What You Should Know Before Using Stock Images

by | Jun 12, 2018

Pretty pictures could cost you a pretty penny

Stock photos are a great way to enhance your firm’s brand, but beware before you just copy and paste whatever picture grabs your attention from Google images – it could cost you! We live in a visual world – motivated and inspired by what we see as by what we hear. Your firm is known not only by its logo, but through the collection of pictures and visual imagery you include on your website and your marketing material.

You can quickly lose a client or prospect’s attention if your imagery is underwhelming or obnoxious. Most advisors don’t have the time or the desire to take original photos every time they need them/

For this reason, stock photos and images are frequently used.

There are quite a few rules and regulations behind using stock images.  Most require that you license and purchase them from the owner before using them. There are several websites you can easily buy images from such as Getty Images and iStock.  The prices can range from free to well into the thousands.

Here are a couple of questions you should ask yourself before using any images:

What Are You Using the Stock Image For?

Before spending your money on a bunch of pictures that inspire you, be sure you know your intentions for those images.  What do you plan to use a particular photo for – website or print publication such as marketing brochures? Photos come in different resolutions and sizes, and while a low-resolution image will work fine on a website it will look like a blurry mess when printed on a brochure. Choose the appropriate size and resolution image for your intended project and needs.

How Long Do You Need the Images For?

License agreements on images often have an expiration date, or you may only have permission to use it for a specific purpose. For example, if you purchase an image to use for your website you might not be allowed to then use that same image for a marketing brochure. Also, you may only be permitted to use a photo for a specific amount of time. After the specified amount of time has been exceeded you’ll need to renew your license to continue using that image.

Financial advisors use their website and social media platforms to attract and obtain potential clients, as well as communicate information to current clients.  The visual appearance (i.e., the images) can make or break the firm’s image and first impression. Make sure that you are following all laws and regulations in regards to choosing and using images.  If you are unsure you can always reach out to a marketing professional, otherwise, that pretty picture may end up costing you a pretty penny!

Meet Crystal

Crystal Lee Butler, MBA
Crystal Lee Butler, MBA is a creative marketer and results-oriented business consultant with over a decade of experience collaborating with independent advisors. At Crystal Marketing Solutions, she delivers exceptional insights for financial professionals enabling them to create a consistent marketing presence so they can focus on the things that matter most to them.
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