International Market

Posted on 11/13/1996 by Jim Pickerell | Printable Version | Comments (0)


International Market

November 13, 1996

One of the highlights of Viscomm '95 was the large number of agents from
overseas who were present. Foreign sales represent more than 50% of the world
market for stock photography and the percentage is growing. Some of the
comments made by these agents are worth considering.

  • In Europe life is not as fast paced as it is in the U.S. Therefore, images
    that show people relating in a more relaxed way may do better than images that
    give the feel of rush, rush, rush.

  • Emotions need to be real. Ton Mancini showed two images of business men
    expressing the concept of winning. One seemed to shout YES! BINGO! I MADE
    IT! not yipee. He pointed out that yipee won't sell.

  • There needs to be real interaction between people.

  • Latin Americans are not look alikes for Italians or Spanish.

  • Trendy pictures are often not good because the trend may be out of date
    before the image actually gets in catalog circulation. (As we move into the
    on-line environment this problem may be solved, but it is a problem now.)

  • We're selling illusions. Simple, clean, beautiful.

  • Europeans are more touchy, feely. Holding hands on the street is OK in
    Europe. Two women holding hands in Europe is OK, but probably not in U.S.

  • Europeans are less inhibited and will use more sensual images than in the

  • Images that show a sense of humor will do better in Britain than the U.S.

  • Multi-cultural images don't do well overseas.

  • The strongest sellers in Japan are landscapes, children and wildlife.

  • Simplicity and serenity have deep roots in Japanese culture and images that
    illicit such feelings do well.

  • There will be 600 million Asian yuppies by the year 2000. Single yuppies
    have more spendable resources than more mature families. Travel market will
    focus on them.

  • Images need to be unique. Marcelo Brodsky said, "Vision doesn't come from
    looking in a rear view mirror."

Copyright © 1996 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:  


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