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Author Topic: I believe in quality.  (Read 19689 times)

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« on: November 07, 2016, 13:21 »
+3
A good portfolio makes good money, a bad portfolio goes empty. A bad portfolio means out-dated images which do not meet the demand of the market. The consequence would be, produce better images or leave the business and not to waste valuable time with complaints, petitions or weird accusations.


Shelma1

« Reply #1 on: November 07, 2016, 13:37 »
+42
Meh. I'm always amazed at the images people license. Some of the stuff I was embarrassed to upload went on to become my best selling images.

And it doesn't matter how amazing your work is if you're being paid two cents for it.

Up with complaints and petitions!

« Reply #2 on: November 07, 2016, 14:24 »
+9
Some of my best sellers are 10 years old and would never ever get appoved nowadays. In their time they were quality images but I wouldn't even try to upload them anywhere now.

« Reply #3 on: November 07, 2016, 14:28 »
+3
Same experience here... many shots we wouldn't upload any more sell better than many others where we invest many time and knowledge.

« Reply #4 on: November 07, 2016, 14:42 »
+3
This is business not art "good" means sells. Not artistic, technically difficult or expensive to produce. Although as has been said by others  I can find little pattern in what sells....that's why I'm not very successful.

alno

« Reply #5 on: November 07, 2016, 14:47 »
+6
A good portfolio makes good money, a bad portfolio goes empty. A bad portfolio means out-dated images which do not meet the demand of the market. The consequence would be, produce better images or leave the business and not to waste valuable time with complaints, petitions or weird accusations.

So what's wrong with signing couple of petitions and making decent content at the same time?
"Better" is not the same to "better selling" by the way.

« Reply #6 on: November 07, 2016, 14:51 »
+1
""Better" is not the same to "better selling" by the way".......actually in the context of Mstock being a business I think it is ;-).

« Reply #7 on: November 07, 2016, 14:54 »
+6
A good portfolio makes good money, a bad portfolio goes empty. A bad portfolio means out-dated images which do not meet the demand of the market. The consequence would be, produce better images or leave the business and not to waste valuable time with complaints, petitions or weird accusations.

I also believe in quality, but not in $0.02 royalty for a quality photo

« Reply #8 on: November 07, 2016, 15:18 »
+22
Quality is such a vague term in the context of licensing stock. If a buyer finds it useful - or lots of buyers find it useful -  then saying it's low quality but sells a lot seems pretty daft to me. Assuming that work that doesn't sell doesn't meet market demand assumes that the market got to take a look at the work and decided not to buy it. That's not always what happens. Good, current, saleable work can and does languish sometimes.

I've been selling stock a while and have seen sales for images take off or sink as changes in search results occur on a site (easier to see when collections were smaller). Not seasonal images, or outdated technology or fashion; just a sudden shift in what ends up on page one for default search results. I'm not the only one who's seen this - you can find oodles of discussions of overnight changes.

Reality is that search position isn't the only thing that determines sales, but it's a huge factor. You can't flog cr#p by putting it on page one, but if there are several perfectly usable images in a certain category, the one up front in the search results will typically sell better.

But the idea that quality images (whatever those are) will just float to the top is wishful thinking, IMO. Good images in an underserved niche have more of a shot than those in an oversupplied category (over 3 million hits for Christmas background on Shutterstock for example), but filling the first page with spammed garbage helps no-one (I doubt that stuff actually sells as it's mostly much less good than what you see in a popular search) and hurts both buyers and ethical, honest contributors.

It's true that contributors don't and can't control the search engine, but can fuss if there are bugs an agency hasn't noticed or horrendous unfairness of some sort. Fussing without leverage generally doesn't work (that's the big stick part of walk softly and carry a big stick).

The bigger the agencies get, the less they need any one of us - they're more worried about getting and keeping buyers than contributors at this point (especially SS with their apparent disinterest in what's in the collection as long as the numbers are big and growing). So it's harder than it was to influence them.

You could choose to avoid dealing with complaints or petitions, but I think there's bucketloads of data from the last decade and a half that thinking all you have to do is produce better images and sales will come isn't going to work out.

« Reply #9 on: November 07, 2016, 15:36 »
+4
Quality is such a vague term in the context of licensing stock. If a buyer finds it useful - or lots of buyers find it useful -  then saying it's low quality but sells a lot seems pretty daft to me. Assuming that work that doesn't sell doesn't meet market demand assumes that the market got to take a look at the work and decided not to buy it. That's not always what happens. Good, current, saleable work can and does languish sometimes.

I've been selling stock a while and have seen sales for images take off or sink as changes in search results occur on a site (easier to see when collections were smaller). Not seasonal images, or outdated technology or fashion; just a sudden shift in what ends up on page one for default search results. I'm not the only one who's seen this - you can find oodles of discussions of overnight changes.

Reality is that search position isn't the only thing that determines sales, but it's a huge factor. You can't flog cr#p by putting it on page one, but if there are several perfectly usable images in a certain category, the one up front in the search results will typically sell better.

But the idea that quality images (whatever those are) will just float to the top is wishful thinking, IMO. Good images in an underserved niche have more of a shot than those in an oversupplied category (over 3 million hits for Christmas background on Shutterstock for example), but filling the first page with spammed garbage helps no-one (I doubt that stuff actually sells as it's mostly much less good than what you see in a popular search) and hurts both buyers and ethical, honest contributors.

It's true that contributors don't and can't control the search engine, but can fuss if there are bugs an agency hasn't noticed or horrendous unfairness of some sort. Fussing without leverage generally doesn't work (that's the big stick part of walk softly and carry a big stick).

The bigger the agencies get, the less they need any one of us - they're more worried about getting and keeping buyers than contributors at this point (especially SS with their apparent disinterest in what's in the collection as long as the numbers are big and growing). So it's harder than it was to influence them.

You could choose to avoid dealing with complaints or petitions, but I think there's bucketloads of data from the last decade and a half that thinking all you have to do is produce better images and sales will come isn't going to work out.
Excellent thoughtful post as ever

Giveme5

« Reply #10 on: November 07, 2016, 16:21 »
+5
I did a very detailed analysis of my 5,000 plus images on line and found 100 of them produce about 80% of my overall sales but some of them I don't consider to be very high quality.  Other variables such as timing and dumb luck play an important role as well in these so-called gem images besides our technical skills. 

On some of my so called high quality images attempts (spent numerous hours preparing) I've had no sales! Thus I've kind of given up on trying to understand what sells and what doesn't - just shoot what you want to do and have fun!



« Reply #11 on: November 07, 2016, 16:40 »
0
Jo Ann, your English is very sophisticated and elaborate. Many times I do not have a clue what your message means. This is entirely my fault, because I am not a native speaker in English. It might be, that many misunderstandings and disputes in this forum relate to this problem, that we have a whole bunch of different nationals around here, whos English is somehow horrible.

« Reply #12 on: November 07, 2016, 17:07 »
+4
Josephine, I see your point on dismissing some complaints but the two petitions being raised are addressing issues that affect ALL contributors, including you, no matter how amazing your works are.

« Reply #13 on: November 07, 2016, 21:40 »
+3
Jo Ann, your English is very sophisticated and elaborate. Many times I do not have a clue what your message means. This is entirely my fault, because I am not a native speaker in English. It might be, that many misunderstandings and disputes in this forum relate to this problem, that we have a whole bunch of different nationals around here, whos English is somehow horrible.

Josephine, I just want to let you know that what Jo Ann writes is not only excellent English but also excellent analysis. It's worth taking time to figure out what she's saying.

And by the way, your own written English reads quite well, too. ;)

« Reply #14 on: November 08, 2016, 00:22 »
+2
Meh. I'm always amazed at the images people license. Some of the stuff I was embarrassed to upload went on to become my best selling images.

And it doesn't matter how amazing your work is if you're being paid two cents for it.

Up with complaints and petitions!

Definitely, then there are the horrifying Frankenstein monsters masterpieces people create after they get bought. :D

SpaceStockFootage

  • Space, Sci-Fi and Astronomy Related Stock Footage

« Reply #15 on: November 08, 2016, 01:20 »
+4
A good portfolio makes good money, a bad portfolio goes empty. A bad portfolio means out-dated images which do not meet the demand of the market. The consequence would be, produce better images or leave the business and not to waste valuable time with complaints, petitions or weird accusations.

I think everyone knows that a good portfolio makes money and a bad portfolio doesn't, but that's not really the point here. People want to receive a decent commission rate for their work, whether they have a good selling portfolio or a bad selling one. Sure, the bad selling ones might be slightly more vocal, as they're making less money, but still...

So if iStock decide to drop your percentage to 10% or 5% or even 1%... you'll still be happy as can be, telling everyone that they should produce better images or leave the business and not to waste valuable time with complaints, petitions or weird accusations?

And if hell freezes over as the pigs are flying overhead when iStock increase their percentage to 20%, you'd be happy to miss out on that and stay at 15%. The thing you have to remember is that 5% more is 5% more, whether you're making $10 a month or $10,000 a month.

« Reply #16 on: November 08, 2016, 01:37 »
+4
I'm confused. What does sales volume have to do with comission rates? Would you be happy with 1% comission or even giving your work for free while the agency takes 100%? Would you complain then or no? because we are getting pretty close.

SpaceStockFootage

  • Space, Sci-Fi and Astronomy Related Stock Footage

« Reply #17 on: November 08, 2016, 02:35 »
0
I'm confused. What does sales volume have to do with comission rates? Would you be happy with 1% comission or even giving your work for free while the agency takes 100%? Would you complain then or no? because we are getting pretty close.

I'm assuming she was lumping everything together in one catch-all post... the petition, the 6 month grace period, the drop in sales etc.

gyllens

« Reply #18 on: November 08, 2016, 02:50 »
+2
Quality! cream floats to the top! etc yes we have heard that since the intro of micro 2004. Today in our business where supply outstrips demand and where quantity seems more important then quality and where we are in the hands of dubvious agencies. Sure keep on dreaming quality we have all been there and done that.

« Reply #19 on: November 08, 2016, 04:10 »
+3
What means quality to me as an illustrator?
Number one is Innovation, I have to produce new and better ideas than others.
I have to accept that I have hundred of thousands of competitors world wide.
I have to do extensive studies on present keyword trends. And I have to avoid common and boring keywords. This takes plenty of time! Its horrible, its boring, I hate it!
I have to be perfect in Adobe Illustrator.
I have to archive a very high acceptance rate.
I need good communication skills when I get in contact with agencies.
I must be addicted to the job I am doing.
I have to produce 100 images to get around 5 top sellers. Every day is a hard days work.

« Reply #20 on: November 08, 2016, 05:40 »
+3
I believe if half your posts are tearing into the quality of other people's work you should be posting a link to your portfolio.

Shelma1

« Reply #21 on: November 08, 2016, 05:55 »
+4
Yeah, I'd love to see these high-quality, original illustrations with new and innovative ideas, and uncommon and exciting (not boring) keywords.

« Reply #22 on: November 08, 2016, 10:18 »
+4
What means quality to me as an illustrator?
Number one is Innovation, I have to produce new and better ideas than others.
I have to accept that I have hundred of thousands of competitors world wide.
I have to do extensive studies on present keyword trends. And I have to avoid common and boring keywords. This takes plenty of time! Its horrible, its boring, I hate it!
I have to be perfect in Adobe Illustrator.
I have to archive a very high acceptance rate.
I need good communication skills when I get in contact with agencies.
I must be addicted to the job I am doing.
I have to produce 100 images to get around 5 top sellers. Every day is a hard days work.
And all that is pointless if the agencies don't pay enough for your work.  I know a lot of people have no reason to complain but if we all just accepted sites doing what istock have done to us, there would be no point in working hard at this.
« Last Edit: November 08, 2016, 10:21 by sharpshot »

« Reply #23 on: November 08, 2016, 11:16 »
+3
I cannot change the company policy. I can either agree or disagree like in any other business. If I am an employee and dont like my company, I better quit. If I am self employed and my customer does not pay me what I want, I better look for another opportunity.

« Reply #24 on: November 08, 2016, 11:18 »
+4
I cannot change the company policy. I can either agree or disagree like in any other business. If I am an employee and dont like my company, I better quit. If I am self employed and my customer does not pay me what I want, I better look for another opportunity.
You can always ask them for a pay rise  ;D I can't see anything wrong with that....


 

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