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Author Topic: Worst marketing in the business?  (Read 5764 times)

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helix7

« on: January 21, 2008, 12:56 »
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Maybe it's just me, but lately I have been of the opinion that Shutterstock's print ads in design magazines are getting progressively worse, and are easily the worst of the microstock business.

I just looked through my January issue of Graphic Design USA, and 2 pages in there is this pretty awful 2-page spread. The right-hand page isn't bad. But the left page is just a mess of various images, few of which are any good. There is this miserable illustration of a yellow video game machine, a bad photo of a computer keyboard that is missing an Enter key, what looks like a poor autotrace of a game console, and a photo of the inside of a computer that is so dark it is almost unusable in any print project. How that image got accepted by any site is beyond me.

And this is what SS is using to represent the site? No wonder sales are slipping over there.


« Last Edit: January 21, 2008, 22:10 by helix7 »


PaulieWalnuts

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« Reply #1 on: January 21, 2008, 13:00 »
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Haven't seen it but at least they're advertising in an attempt to attract buyers.

helix7

« Reply #2 on: January 21, 2008, 13:07 »
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These images would drive me away as a buyer. Seriously, if I didn't know anything about SS and saw these images, I would not even bother looking at the site, let alone actually consider buying a subscription. They have photogs like Yuri, Andres, Rinder, countless other real pros, and this is the junk they use to promote the site?

Edit: Posted ad scan above.
« Last Edit: January 21, 2008, 22:10 by helix7 »

vonkara

« Reply #3 on: January 21, 2008, 17:59 »
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Do there is other agencies who have publicity in your magazine. I would be interested to know which

« Reply #4 on: January 21, 2008, 18:04 »
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I have to say there direct marketing postcards always get me to look and I'm not prone to looking at junk mail. At least they're advertising.

« Reply #5 on: January 21, 2008, 18:08 »
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yaeh, i would agree.. at least their advertising.  Name recognition is worth quite a lot.  They are still on top of the stack of microstock sites, so they are obviously doing something right.

helix7

« Reply #6 on: January 21, 2008, 22:12 »
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They are advertising, which is more than some agencies can say. But if it's negative publicity, is it doing more harm than good? I look at some of those images on the left page, and I think "What do designers say about the quality of SS images when they see this?"

To the credit of the artists of the work pictured, some of it is certainly good. And the right-page image is nice as well. I'm not looking to call out individual artists here. I just question the decision making in choosing the images that will represent SS to potential customers.

Maybe it's not even my place to question these things. I just am of the opinion that they could do much better.


« Last Edit: January 21, 2008, 22:15 by helix7 »

helix7

« Reply #7 on: January 21, 2008, 22:13 »
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Do there is other agencies who have publicity in your magazine. I would be interested to know which

Stockxpert, istock, and SS appear in this magazine regularly, and I also subscribe to HOW, where they also appear.

Last year I remember also seeing some 123RF ads in GD USA.

Fotolia advertises in HOW as well.

PaulieWalnuts

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« Reply #8 on: January 21, 2008, 22:49 »
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I think that's going along the lines of the new "fresh" look. Are buyers getting tired of perfectly staged smiling faces?

helix7

« Reply #9 on: January 21, 2008, 23:23 »
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I think that's going along the lines of the new "fresh" look. Are buyers getting tired of perfectly staged smiling faces?

They probably are tired of it. I just think the choice of images, particularly on the left page, could have been better. A quick search at SS reveals much better video game-related images, especially illustrations.

I'm not saying that they always have to use the best stuff, but that yellow game machine is bottom-of-the-barrel sort of stuff.



« Reply #10 on: January 21, 2008, 23:51 »
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Helix7, I don't think the choice of those poor images on the left with the boy on the right was accidentally bad. There was an attempt to express something with the messed graphics. I just don't see what exactly they were trying to say, probably that you need better images than that.

Now, I'm not saying that I like the advert or that I understand it. However I don't think the broken keyword could have make it into costly advert like this just by accidental poor selection of images.

helix7

« Reply #11 on: January 22, 2008, 00:59 »
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...I don't think the broken keyword could have make it into costly advert like this just by accidental poor selection of images.

Good point. I still don't get the tagline and how it relates to the images (other than the gaming reference), but I suppose I can see it differently than my original assessment.



« Reply #12 on: January 22, 2008, 01:28 »
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There is a furniture store in Houston and the owner makes all the TV and radio commercials.  He jumps up and down on mattress claiming that he will "Save You Money".  He has been doing this for well over 20 years.  About 15 years ago some people did a survey on local advertising. They asked the public which local commercials were best and which ones were worst.  He won in both categories.  When asked about this double win he said he was glad people remembered his adds.  Now I don't claim to know anything about advertising but maybe this is what Shutterstock was going for.  Good, bad or ugly maybe Shutterstock just want people to remember the add.

« Reply #13 on: January 22, 2008, 05:50 »
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Shutterstock just had their ad on www.microstockgroup.com.
On this very page.
At the top.
For free.

I think we can conclude that their strategy works very well  :)

« Reply #14 on: January 22, 2008, 06:42 »
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The double spread ad, IMO, works very well and has a clear message.  today's designers are for the most part in their twenties to early thirties.  The jumble of images reminds me of the video games they played with when they were younger and represent an older "generation" of technology.  The other image represents a figure from one of today's games that require a player to reach a higher skill level in order to combat to win the game. He is holding an older generation computor mouse in his hand in to show that he is stronger, faster, better than the older games (read that as being the images on the other page) and that in order to reach that level of skill (in the ad's case, read that image quality) the buyer needs to use SS for their images.  That is why the tagline is over him, not the jumbled images.  the reference to being able to "afford" playing at a higher level with SS is a double meaning.  On a practical level SS is less expensive per image than most other agencies and on a gaming level it usually costs a player many lives to get to a higher level.
The images in the jumble represent the old and obsolete. They do not represent what SS is tyrying to sell to their customers, designers who are also young enough to be "hip" to the gaming generation.
With those points in mind, I think the ad is great.
rosta
« Last Edit: January 22, 2008, 06:47 by rosta »


 

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