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Author Topic: techniques for marketing or improving visability  (Read 10336 times)

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« Reply #25 on: April 14, 2010, 01:51 »
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Dreamstime:

Delete similar images with only few sales, delete images which have not sold in a while. That might help according to Achilles. I have deleted over 50% of my portfolio and so far the past days have been quite good. Don't know how it will play out long term. But no regrets about getting rid of the crappy images/no sellers/slow sellers. If there are good photos which should be good sellers but have not been downloaded, let them be rekeyworded by Dt's Keyword service. This will give them a new start.


« Reply #26 on: April 14, 2010, 04:38 »
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One of the downsides to using multiple agencies is that you have to develop a unique strategy for each one. Although there are techniques they have in common, in order to maximize your exposure at any given agency you'll need to do things that are specific to it. I'm not an independent anymore, so I don't mind sharing a few pointers for some of the agencies I used to contribute to.

Shutterstock: Timing your submissions to get a high rank in the "New" search is critical. A good habit to get into is to monitor how long it takes (in hours) from the time you submit an image to the time it takes for it to appear in the search results. Adjust your submission times accordingly. Ideally you'll want your images to "go live" on Sunday through Wednesday nights (EST). Also, Shutterstock reviews images in batches based on the oldest image you have in the queue: by submitting just one image at the most opportune time you will ensure that all your images in that batch will be reviewed with it.

Dreamstime: I found this agency's search to be the most confounding - I think they want to be seen as "the good guys", and arrange things to spread sales across as many contributors as possible. Their search engine uses titles and descriptions together with keywords, so you need adjust these to suit. A common mistake is to use the same title and description for similar images - by doing this you're tying your images to the same search terms, which may not be optimal for images that have more than one readily-identifiable use. A good technique is to mix-and-match varying (but pertinent) conceptual keywords in your titles and descriptions, thereby increasing your exposure across multiple search terms.

Fotolia: Keyword order is of primary importance here - their search engine places extra weight on the first seven keywords, so you need to put the same kind of some thought into keyword order here as you do with titles and descriptions on Dreamstime.

Image Exclusivity: If you've "won the lottery" on an image at Dreamstime or Fotolia, check to see how it's doing at other agencies - it may be more profitable for you to list it exclusively at one agency than to have it listed across multiple ones.

To be honest Sharply I think you're just adding to and confirming yet another ton of myths about microstock. People love to believe that there are significant other elements to explain their lack of success, rather than just the saleability of their images __ but really there aren't.

If your stuff isn't selling as well as you think it should it is highly unlikely to be because you haven't employed the correct 'strategy' for the particular agency. It'll be because your stuff isn't as good as what is already available to the buyers.

Shutterstock __ It really makes sod all difference when you choose to upload. For starters you can't actually predict how long it will take for your images to be inspected which can be anything from 4 hours to 4 days. I believe most subscribers know perfectly well how the various sort options work and how to seek out the best stuff. New uploads will be highly visible in the first few pages of 'Newest First' for several days, comfortably a working week, and that's where LT subscribers will be looking. Good images will generally be discovered although FD's tip about not uploading series of images together is accurate.

Dreamstime - Yes, titles and descriptions are very important but DT have such a piss-poor default sort-order that it is something of a lottery anyway. Their significance as a major player is slowly ebbing, month by month.

Fotolia - I know FT have stated themselves that keyword order is important and indeed the first 7 keywords are highlighted in bold, etc when you click on an image. Unfortunately it doesn't actually make any difference to where the image appears in the default sort-order. This is very easy for anyone to prove. Just take a couple of your own newish images from a series and modify the keyword orders of one of them to be 'wrong', then see if their sort order position changes relative to each other (it won't). You can also see that keyword order has no effect on virtually every search that throws up bizarre results. Try a search on 'ribs roast' for example __ the images of lambs in a field do not have those keywords highlighted but they are still very prominent. The default sort order position at FT is determined by the sales/views ratio and newness and has nothing to do with keyword order.

Over the years I've had a few suspicions myself about how things might be distorted within microstock __ but one by one, as evidence has appeared, those 'beliefs' have been disproven. There was once a particularly successful contributor at IS and I used to wonder whether their extraordinary success was in part down to their keywording. Keywords at IS were invisible in those days. Then they made keywords visible and we all found that actually the contributor in question had very ordinary keywording skills. Disappointingly their success was entirely down to the quality of the images! I used to assume that the sort-order at IS (and probably everything else too!) was so skewed towards exclusives that no independent contributor could ever hope to challenge those at the very top (or even be allowed to) __ then along came Yuri who comprehensively blew that theory out of the water.

An individual's success or otherwise at microstock is probably at least 98% down to the saleability of their images. About the only 'strategy' that will make any difference is the title thing at DT. It is tempting to think that luck plays a significant part too as we all have images that do well on some agencies and not on others. However that element almost certainly works in both directions and probably evens out in the greater scheme of things. It is not something that a contributor can influence anyway.

« Reply #27 on: April 14, 2010, 07:27 »
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As new images are exposed prominently for a short period, you shouldn't upload a row of similars in one batch, but add some different content. This way the halo effect of your new images will be maximized over your whole portfolio.
thanks, I'll give that a try.

« Reply #28 on: April 14, 2010, 08:44 »
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To be honest Sharply I think you're just adding to and confirming yet another ton of myths about microstock. People love to believe that there are significant other elements to explain their lack of success, rather than just the saleability of their images __ but really there aren't.
If your stuff isn't selling as well as you think it should it is highly unlikely to be because you haven't employed the correct 'strategy' for the particular agency. It'll be because your stuff isn't as good as what is already available to the buyers.


BINGO

Good reply gostwick


 

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