Giving Creators Control Of Pricing

Posted on 1/11/2012 by Jim Pickerell | Printable Version | Comments (2)

After reading my story on “Who Controls The Price” Terri Petrie of asked, “How could a stock agency allow for more creator control of prices?”

Get the Full Article (2 Credits)

Have an Account?

Access to this site is an exclusive benefit for you. Enter your username and password in the form above. If you don't remember your password you can reset it at any time.

Forgot your password?

New to Selling Stock?

Selling Stock is an on-line newsletter that reports on developing trends in the stock photo industry. It is updated at least twice a month. On-line subscribers receive e-mail notification whenever new stories are posted. Archives containing stories going back to late 1995 are fully available to subscribers.

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:  


  • Charles Cecil Posted Jan 11, 2012
    Jim: One small wrinkle on your proposals would be simply to allow the photographer to set a minimum price below which no sale of any image from that photographer would be permitted. One agency that has my material has made a number of sales at prices so low I considered them practically an insult, and I would rather have forgone the sale than have it proceed at that price. The agency reminded me, of course, that our agreement gives it the right to set prices. Chuck Cecil/Cecil Images

  • Leslie Hughes Posted Jan 11, 2012
    Jim -Pricing is so tough. We launched a sales services organization last year and are providing direct sales support to a number of agencies. We see first hand how the market has changed.

    Sellers want to get as high a price and as many sales as possible. However many licensing companies are not negotiating and just drop prices so they don't lose the job. In focusing on volume, they have to keep costs low, service is reduced and the cycle goes. Partly, co.s don't have the manpower or really know how to determine when and how to keep the prices high. Others list higher prices online but are known for dropping significantly offline.

    But a core issue is training so that sales people know how to handle jobs that go offline. The consumption of images is actually probably at an all time high but the fast paced change means that what the client is willing to accept has broadened. Often what is "good enough" is what they will accept even if they like another image better. This is different from the days when the image itself was foremost. We still find that the more unique content is, the more we can hold to high prices. We also find the end user and the use itself is key. Certain segments have the budgets and use them. Recently we have seen quite a few sales with very high price per image points (5K and up). But these are worked out with the client, with the understanding of the use, and the specific needs.

    Finally - one last issue. I was surprised that some companies are allowing distribution partners to work through other distribution partners or networks. This means there could be 4 or more parties splitting the license fee. That will make even a decent number look pretty small.

Post Comment

You must log in to post comments.

Stay Connected

Sign up to receive our FREE weekly email listing new stories posted.

Follow Us

Free Stuff

Stock Photo Pricing: The Future
In the last two years I have written a lot about stock photo pricing and its downward slide. If you have time over the holidays you may want to review some of these stories as you plan your strategy ...
Read More
Future Of Stock Photography
If you’re a photographer that counts on the licensing of stock images to provide a portion of your annual income the following are a few stories you should read. In the past decade stock photography ...
Read More
Blockchain Stories
The opening session at this year’s CEPIC Congress in Berlin on May 30, 2018 is entitled “Can Blockchain be applied to the Photo Industry?” For those who would like to know more about the existing blo...
Read More
2017 Stories Worth Reviewing
The following are links to some 2017 and early 2018 stories that might be worth reviewing as we move into the new year.
Read More
Stories Related To Stock Photo Pricing
The following are links to stories that deal with stock photo pricing trends. Probably the biggest problem the industry has faced in recent years has been the steady decline in prices for the use of ...
Read More
Stock Photo Prices: The Future
This story is FREE. Feel free to pass it along to anyone interested in licensing their work as stock photography. On October 23rd at the DMLA 2017 Conference in New York there will be a panel discuss...
Read More
Important Stock Photo Industry Issues
Here are links to recent stories that deal with three major issues for the stock photo industry – Revenue Growth Potential, Setting Bottom Line On Pricing and Future Production Sources.
Read More
Recent Stories – Summer 2016
If you’ve been shooting all summer and haven’t had time to keep up with your reading here are links to a few stories you might want to check out as we move into the fall. To begin, be sure to complet...
Read More
Corbis Acquisition by VCG/Getty Images
This story provides links to several stories that relate to the Visual China Group (VCG) acquisition of Corbis and the role Getty Images has been assigned in the transfer of Corbis assets to the Gett...
Read More
Finding The Right Image
Many think search will be solved with better Metadata. While metadata is important, there are limits to how far it can take the customer toward finding the right piece of content. This story provides...
Read More

More from Free Stuff