Getty Changes Price Calculator

Posted on 10/5/2012 by Jim Pickerell | Printable Version | Comments (1)

It has been pointed out to me that Getty Images has made some dramatic changes in its Rights Managed price calculator. This may have been around for a while, but it is the first time I’ve had a chance to examine it in some detail.

Now the information the customer must supply is broken down into three areas – (1) Image Usage; (2) Usage Specs and (3) Target Market. Under Image Usage it asks for the general category of usage – advertising, marketing, publishing, web, film, internal corporate and retail. Within each one of these categories there are more narrowly defined sub-categories that the customer must choose. One of the advantages of this system is that there are very specific definitions of each of these sub-categories as to what is allowed and what is not covered. This detail is printed on the license.

One of the somewhat unusual things here is that the pricing for ads in either magazines or newspapers is the same depending on circulation. It used to be that newspaper advertising was less. On the other hand, all such deals are probably separately negotiated today. Seldom will the customer pay the list price.

Next the customer is taken to Usage Specs which include: Size, Circulation and Duration. (These specs vary depending on the category chosen.)

Once the customer has input the above information she must then fill in the Target Market section in order to get a price. This section provides some of the most interesting changes in the pricing calculator strategy. For years Getty has asked customers to fill in the territories and industry where the product would be distributed, but these factors never used to affect the price in any way. (They were just for general internal usage.) Now they have a significant impact on the price.

Take for example:
    Print ad in magazine or newspaper
    One-quarter of the ad
    Up to 1 million circulation
    For 1 year
In the U.S. alone the fee would be $2,020. However, for each addition country where the ad will be circulated the price goes up. Add UK and the price goes to $2,445; UK and Germany and the price is $2,525 and for the U.S., UK, Germany and France it goes to $2,830. The price for any one of these countries alone is $2,020. Anything more than 4 countries seems to stay at the 4 country figure.

When it comes to the choice of territory Getty has 97 countries listed, but for some reason they forgot to add the biggest country in the world – China. (They do include Taiwan.) Regardless of which country the customer chooses – large or small - the price is always the same.

So consider this usage:
    Print ad in magazine or newspaper
    Up to one-quarter of the ad
    Up to 100,000 circulation
    For 1 year
For use in the U.S.  ---   $1,215
For use in U.S., UK, Germany and France  ---   $1,700
For use in Fiji, Pitcaim, Palau and Tonga  ---    $1,700

The size of a given market makes no difference when it comes to price. Each market, no matter how small is treated the same as the largest market.

When using the old price calculator if the customer didn’t like the price she could click the “Back” button and adjust the circulation or duration figures to see how making some adjustments would change the cost. Now, if the customer wants to do such checks she has to start all over and go through all the steps. For some customers this means that it takes longer to find a price than it used to take. Nothing like making things harder for the customer.

Copyright © 2012 Jim Pickerell. The above article may not be copied, reproduced, excerpted or distributed in any manner without written permission from the author. All requests should be submitted to Selling Stock at 10319 Westlake Drive, Suite 162, Bethesda, MD 20817, phone 301-461-7627, e-mail: wvz@fpcubgbf.pbz

Jim Pickerell is founder of, an online newsletter that publishes daily. He is also available for personal telephone consultations on pricing and other matters related to stock photography. He occasionally acts as an expert witness on matters related to stock photography. For his current curriculum vitae go to:  


  • Heather McNeill Posted Oct 7, 2012

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