Using stock images for your social media presence is a no-brainer. If you haven’t been doing this for your brand, you’re already behind your competition. It’s inexpensive, fast, and super-convenient and allows you to get your marketing messages out faster and in a timely fashion. In this discussion, we’ll look at how stock photos can enhance your social media presence and help establish an effective marketing strategy.
Save time and money
The major advantage of using stock photography in your social media marketing campaign is that it saves considerable time. When you choose stock photography over hiring a professional photographer, you’re immediately zooming past the standard workflow that involves hiring a professional photographer, assigning the task, explaining the task’s requirements, and waiting for the first set of images. Sometimes you can even avoid sitting through a photo session to ensure that the setup and looks meet the job’s requirements.
When you convert all that time and effort into money, that’s a considerable investment! Using stock photos is much more convenient, and you can accomplish more in less time. When stock photos fuel your social media presence, you fast-forward the entire process.
Maintain a consistent aesthetic
A professional stock photographer is someone who is an expert in their job. They ensure that their photos are consistent when they create a series of images or use the same model to create a different series of images. And I don’t suggest that they look the same. What I mean is that the images are consistently lit, and they’re edited professionally to ensure that they have a perfect balance of brightness, contrast, and saturation. This is an important aspect that can impact the quality of your marketing material. There is no such thing as a poorly shot and hastily edited stock image.
Expand your options
If you commission a stock photographer to shoot images for you, you’re limited to the number of looks that the photographer comes up with for you. There could be a short preview of a few different looks (ideas), which can be further developed into a full-fledged shoot with multiple variations.
Even then, a photographer cannot offer unlimited options or variations. With stock photography, you’re open to the concept developed by many photographers. In other words, you’re not limited to just one or two photographers. You’re free to choose the concept and the style that you like.
Additionally, you don’t have to wait several days to get the first look. Once you have a basic idea of what you need, you can immediately start going through the work of different photographers.
Because stock photos are available in a much wider variety, you can experiment with your choice of images and mix and match different approaches. Hiring a professional photographer would be much more expensive to achieve the same level of variety.
On the flip side, however, you may not find the same combination, such as colors that reflect your brand, the same model, or even an outfit that goes with your business ethics. This is because a photographer may have only a limited number of images from a session depicting a particular model. But having said that, you can find many options to play with if you are open to the work of multiple photographers or can accept images representing multiple models.
Additionally, scrutinizing the work of multiple photographers can give you additional ideas that you can incorporate into your marketing plans. You can have fresh new ideas and perspectives that many photographers are using. If you’re working with just one photographer, that kind of “creative brainstorming” can never happen.
Stay on trend
Depending on the business that you’re in, one way to stay ahead of the competition is to stay on top of the trend. When you see the work created by multiple creative professionals, you can learn about the emerging trends in the industry.
A collection of new images is always a fresh bouquet of ideas waiting to be tapped and further explored. You won’t be able to replicate this if you’re working with just one photographer.
The biggest advantage of using stock photos for social media marketing is that they’re edited and ready for use with enough customization options. For example, if you want to add your brand name or add extra text, these images are ready for that. You can add an overlay, text, brand logo, and other embellishments to fine-tune the final draft before using it in your marketing flow.
Maintain a steady social media engagement
Another big advantage of using stock images is that if you’re a small business, you can maintain a steady social media engagement with stock images. Stock images are inexpensive, and you can experiment with your social media messages frequently and choose different themes, templates, and messages to see what works best for you. With easy customizability and the option to add text and logo, you can customize each piece of message easily and squeeze extra mileage out of your investment.
Choose images that are relevant to your brand but less downloaded
One side effect of using stock images is that if you choose images that have been downloaded many times over, you run the risk of using “cliched” images. Your brand messages will appear to be “too similar” to those other brands use. One way to avoid this cycle is to choose images that are relevant to your business but, at the same time, have not been downloaded too many times. Using fresh images is one way to ensure this. But another technique that you can use is to go deep into the results pages. Use the filter option to eliminate images downloaded many times over. This will pull up images that are least used yet match your requirements.