How to Find the Best Stock Photos

Posted by: Chris Marentis

How to Find the Best Stock Photos

Do’s
Don’ts


We’ve all seen generic staged looking stock photos on business websites. Sometimes they’re tacky, sometimes they’re overpriced, and in the worst possible situation, they’re both tacky and overpriced.

frame wcopy But if you use stock photos correctly, they can actually be quite useful for your local internet marketing. According to Hubspot, stock photos can add more compelling visual content to your ads without the cost of paying for original photography or design work. The trick is knowing how to select the perfect photo for your marketing campaign and budget.

 

Make the Photo Tell a Story

When you use a stock photo, make sure you’re using it for a reason. In other words, don’t just post it with your ad copy to occupy space. Instead, use images that tie in with your content. Depending on your business’s creative process, it might help to begin with a message in mind, find a great photo, and then tweak the copy so that it all ties together. If you don’t have flexibility on both ends, you could end up spending hours searching for the perfect photo to complement the exact wording in your ad.

 

On the other hand, it’s also not a good idea to choose a generic photo that would fit any content. You want to make the image and the message memorable so people take the time to look at it. If you’re stuck on the creative, don’t be afraid to turn to local marketing experts for guidance.

 

Consider Your Audience

Small business owners always need to be thinking about what their customers want and how they can deliver it. When it comes to stock photos, it’s also important to choose images that your customers can relate to. For instance, if your target audience is Baby Boomers, you could choose photos that evoke feelings of nostalgia, such as a group of people listening to vinyl records.

 

Don’t Modify the Photo Too Much

Although Photoshop is a wonderful tool, sometimes it’s more trouble than it’s worth. In fact, sometimes you won’t need to alter the stock photo at all. Surprisingly, for simple photo editing, PowerPoint can usually do the trick. In some cases, you’ll run across a photo with one perfect element but another that doesn’t work. The simple solution – just crop out the part you don’t like.

 

Don’t Be Afraid to Experiment

You might think you found the perfect stock photo—until you combine it with the text. That’s when you realize that the photo isn’t right at all. To learn to use stock photos effectively, you’ll have to be willing to experiment. Thankfully, purchasing stock photos is much less costly than hiring a photographer or graphic artist.

Chris Marentis

Chris Marentis is a passionate entrepreneur and innovator determined to leave a legacy bigger than himself. Chris grew up in an entrepreneurial family with a father who owned a home contracting HVAC business. When traditional media was disrupted by the online world, empowering consumers to rely less on sales people and advertisements to make decisions, large companies with big budgets could afford to play the game, but the local entrepreneur, like Chris’s father was left behind. This disadvantage inspired Chris to write Surefire Social: the guide for local SMB’s to compete in the digital world. Chris was invited to speak at events and demand grew for ways to implement his ideas. Chris turned his vision into a reality when he started Surefire Social in 2009. Feedback was strong. Businesses began asking for help implementing their digital marketing and Surefire evolved into a SaaS and services business. The company’s dramatic growth came with only 1-2 sales people at any given time and a limited marketing budget, thanks to referrals from rabidly loyal clients. The company’s latest innovation Surepulse, an SMB’s Digital CMO, provides data insights and competitive tactics to marketing novices, giving them complete control over their online marketing activities. Chris has spoken at the following events: SMX, BIA/Kelsey, Hanley Wood International Roofing Show and Contractor Summit, NAILBA National Conference, Tech Summit, CCN, GAF Wealth Builders, Gutter Helmet National Dealer Meeting. Publications Chris contributes to: Street Fight, Search Engine Land, iMedia, Social Media Today, Franchising World‏.

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