Microstock

What To Shoot: Learning From iStock

By Jim Pickerell | 683 Words | Posted 7/12/2018 | Comments
In the previous story I examined the Getty Image Creative collection, and in particular EyeEm’s contribution to that collection, in and effort to determine what subject matter might be in greatest demand, and thus most needed. iStock offers some interesting insights into the subject because it basically has two separate collections – Signature and Essentials – with imagery at different price points.

Microstock Agency Sizes

By Jim Pickerell | 1067 Words | Posted 6/29/2018 | Comments
Other than Shutterstock’s quarterly reports and occasional bits of information from Getty concerning iStock there is virtually no solid information available regarding the annual gross revenue generated by the microstock companies. I decided to take a look at the Poll information that can be found on Microstockgroup.com of 10 of the leading microstock agencies to see if I could draw any reasonable conclusions about the annual revenue of these companies.

SilverHub Going Into Administration

By Jim Pickerell | 181 Words | Posted 6/18/2018 | Comments
Sources tell me that in an all-staff conference call on Wednesday, June 13, 2018, Nick Evans-Lombe and Adrian Murrell informed the SilverHub.Media staff that the company would be going into administration, the UK version of bankruptcy protection.

Shutterstock Launches Ireland Office

By Jim Pickerell | 555 Words | Posted 6/12/2018 | Comments
Shutterstock has announced the launch of its Dublin office with the intent to initially hire 40 professionals including engineering roles, and to potentially grow the team further over the coming years. This project is supported by the Irish Government through IDA Ireland.

DroneBase Footage Now Available At Shutterstock

By Jim Pickerell | 248 Words | Posted 6/7/2018 | Comments
Shutterstock is expanding its aerial footage collection in a new distribution deal that will deliver hundreds of high-quality 4K videos produced by the largest global drone operations company, DroneBase. From a soaring bird’s-eye view of the biggest cities in the world to incredible coastline vistas, all of this immersive content is now available to license for commercial use on Shutterstock.

Know Your Return-Per-Image

By Jim Pickerell | 726 Words | Posted 5/31/2018 | Comments
I would like to encourage every stock photographer to begin to calculate, on an annual basis, their Return-Per-Image (RPI) for each agency they work with. This is particularly important for those photographers who hope to realize a profit for the time and expense they invest in producing stock images.

500px Marketplace Closing Down

By Jim Pickerell | 378 Words | Posted 5/31/2018 | Comments
Contributors to 500px Marketplace are finally learning what Visual China Group (VCG) has planned for them. VCG has just sent them a message outlining some “major enhancements” that are coming. “ “These changes will help maximize your potential earnings by positioning your content at the right price and with the right distribution. Starting July 1st, 2018, we’re offering our community an exclusive opportunity to work with our newest global distribution partner, Getty Images,” the message says. (emphasis mine)

Can Getty Raise Prices?

By Jim Pickerell | 996 Words | Posted 5/24/2018 | Comments
After years of Shutterstock taking market share from Getty, it seems that the two have achieved a state of relative parity with regard to gross revenue generated from the licensing of still images. Customers no longer seem to be leaving Getty because its prices are too high. In fact, Getty seems to be charging selected customers less per-image than what Shutterstock would charge them. Where AdobeStock fits in is unclear, but for the time being each seems to have a customer base that favors them. There does not seem to be a lot of movement of customers from one to the other.

IBM Watson To Improve Shutterstock Search

By Jim Pickerell | 301 Words | Posted 5/18/2018 | Comments
Shutterstock is enlisting the help of IBM’s Watson AI technology to make it easier for marketers to find images, videos, and music tracks. The company announced today that its library of more than 200 million assets will become available in July through the Watson Content Hub, a cloud-based management system designed to aid in the creation of websites, apps, billboards, and more.

Wemark Enters Stock Photography Marketplace

By Jim Pickerell | 738 Words | Posted 4/30/2018 | Comments
Wemark has announced on VentureBeat.com that it is looking to replace existing agencies in the stock photography marketplace with a blockchain strategy that supports direct transactions between creators and customers and gives photographers control over the price of their photos.

Shutterstock Q1 2018 Financial Results

By Jim Pickerell | 1009 Words | Posted 4/26/2018 | Comments
Shutterstock has reported Q1 2018 revenue of $153 million up $22.8 million compared to $130.2 million in Q1 2017. On a constant currency basis revenue grew about 12.8% compared to the first quarter of 2017. The revenue was also up $1.8 million from Q4 2017. Revenue per download averaged $3.40 per image, an 16.8% increase over Q1 2017.

SmugMug Acquires Flickr

By Jim Pickerell | 942 Words | Posted 4/23/2018 | Comments
SmugMug, an independent, family-run company, has acquired Flickr from Verizon’s digital media subsidiary Oath. Flickr was founded in 2004 and sold to Yahoo in 2005. Yahoo, in turn, was acquired by Verizon in 2016 for $4.83 billion. Verizon combined Flickr with AOL to create a new subsidiary called Oath.

BrandCamp By Cavan Images

By Jim Pickerell | 853 Words | Posted 4/19/2018 | Comments
As more and more photographers with experience at putting together high production value shoots are leaving the stock photo business major brands are beginning to have trouble finding the images they need in stock photo files. There are plenty of cheap images and plenty of candid, “real life” images, available as stock photos, but often they don’t fit the concepts brands have in mind.

Getty Retiring Thinkstock

By Jim Pickerell | 808 Words | Posted 4/9/2018 | Comments
Getty Images has announced that it will be retiring Thinkstock.com in mid-2019 and taking steps to transition Thinkstock customers over to Getty Images and iStock. Getty says this move will make way for a newer and overall improved experience for Thinkstock customers on Getty Images and iStock.

VRmeta: New Video Keywording

By Jim Pickerell | 530 Words | Posted 3/22/2018 | Comments
One of the issues these videographers face is accurately tagging their video clips so they can be easily discovered by customers. Microstocksolutions LLC has released its VRmeta® app for iOS and Android that is designed to make it easier for videographers to accurately tag their digital video and 360°/ VR clips with time and location-based metadata.

iStock Exclusive or Multi-Agency Non-Exclusive?

By Jim Pickerell | 734 Words | Posted 3/21/2018 | Comments
I’ve been asked by an iStock exclusive contributor with more than 10,000 images in the collection if he should go non-exclusive and put his images with multiple agencies. This contributor has been regularly adding new images, but his gross revenue has been steadily declining month by month.

Photo Sales Trends In China

By Dimmy Ran | 1836 Words | Posted 3/5/2018 | Comments
Every six months Dimmy Ran, Creative Content Director of HelloRF, a subsidiary of ZCOOL, prepares a detailed analysis of the search behaviors and sales trends of their Chinese customers. This information is sent to HelloRF contributors with the hope that it will help then create more competitive stock image content. While this information is specific to Chinese customer demand, it may also have relevance to customer demand in other countries around the world.

Shutterstock’s Average Price Increases: What Do They Mean?

By Jim Pickerell | 946 Words | Posted 2/23/2018 | Comments
The numbers Shutterstock put out yesterday got me thinking. Is it really possible for the average price per download to steadily rise in a year when they have introduced new 10 and 50 image packs at lower costs to the customers?  Do the download figures really mean the customers are using more of every category of imagery?

Shutterstock 2017 Financial Results

By Jim Pickerell | 1072 Words | Posted 2/22/2018 | Comments
Shutterstock has reported Q4 2017 revenue of $151.8 million up $21.7 million, or 16.6% on a constant currency basis, compared to $130.2 million in Q4 2016. The revenue was also up $10.7& million from Q3 2017. Revenue per download averaged $3.33 per image, an 11% increase over Q4 2016. About 27% of revenue, or roughly $150.4 million, was paid out in royalties to contributors.

Shutterstock Invests In ZCool, Sells Webdam

By Jim Pickerell | 357 Words | Posted 2/22/2018 | Comments
Shutterstock, Inc. has announced that on January 4, 2018, the Company invested $15.0 million in convertible preferred shares issued by Zcool Network Technology Limited ("Zcoolto”). Zcool's primary business is the operation of an e-commerce platform in China whereby customers can pay to license content contributed by creative professionals. The platform has nearly six million registered users. Zcool has been the exclusive distributor of Shutterstock creative content in China since 2014.

Copytrack To Launch Global Copyright Register

By Jim Pickerell | 904 Words | Posted 2/20/2018 | Comments
Copytrack has completed its Initial Coin Offering (ICO) and will be launching a Global Copyright Register (GCR) this summer that will work in conjunction with their Global Copyright Enfocement services (copytrack.com). With their Presale and ICO they have a total of 8,600 investors who have purchased around 16 million tokens. The purchase of images found on the GCR will be tracked in a Blockchain and paid for using cryptocurrency tokens.

More Than 1 Billion Images Licensed By Shutterstock

By Jim Pickerell | 298 Words | Posted 1/31/2018 | Comments
Shutterstock has announced that in its 14-year history it has licensed more than 1 billion royalty free images, videos and music tracks across all of its businesses. Currently the company has more than 170 million commercial images, 40 million editorial images and 9 million video clips in its collections.

Shutterstock Forecasts 2018 Creative Trends

By Jim Pickerell | 770 Words | Posted 1/17/2018 | Comments
Shutterstock has released its 2018 Creative Trends Report. Every year, Shutterstock customers across the world make billions of searches for images, footage, and music. Shutterstock creative teams analyze this search and download data to discover the biggest year-over-year increases and identify the trends they believe will continue to grow throughout 2018.

Can Your IP Address Affect Your Shutterstock Sales

By Jim Pickerell | 307 Words | Posted 1/17/2018 | Comments
One Shutterstock photographer who has resided in various countries at different times reports that the Shutterstock search engine seems to use the contributor’s IP address as part of the algorithm to rank images higher or lower in the search return order based on location.

Two Categories Of Image Suppliers

By Jim Pickerell | 1019 Words | Posted 1/8/2018 | Comments
Broadly, there are two different categories of photographer who produce stock images. I believe way less than 7% of Shutterstock contributors are earning enough annually to view stock photography as a career. A contributor probably needs a collection of at least 20,000 images to earn a reasonable amount of money by U.S. standards. At least 93% of Shutterstock contributors have fewer than 1,000 images in the collection and their average income is less than $200 annually. See the breakdowns.