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IanButty

Is it possible to make a living out of stock photography any more?

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1 hour ago, John Mitchell said:

 

In Italian yes, but not in Spanish, which is spoken in Mexico. The word for "coast" in Spanish is costa.

 

Mexican tourism developers like to stick "Riviera" in the names of places so that tourists will associate them with luxury. An example is the so-called "Mayan Riviera" along the Caribbean coast of the Yucatan Peninsula. It's a beautiful, once-wild area now mostly spoiled by huge hotel complexes and cruise ship crowds.

 

That means Europe?

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On 07/10/2017 at 12:32, Aylish said:

I think the success of stock photography relies on the amount of images you upload and the effectiveness of your tags.  People on here earn thousands.  Marketing skills also make a difference to how many photos you sell. 

 

So I think you can make a living out of this if your persistent and consistent with uploads/tags and Marketing of your photos.

 

Aylish

Aylish

 

Im pretty new to selling photo's. I made the initial mistake of mislabelling and am in the process of correcting them all. One point you made is about marketing of your pics. What do you mean by that and how is it done?

 

Steve 

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On 10/7/2017 at 11:23, KODAKovic said:

 

That means Europe?

 

No, not in this instance. Image KC1191 was taken in Mexico, specifically in Tulum on the so-called "Riviera Maya" or "Mayan Riviera", not in Europe.

 

We seem to be speaking different languages...

 

 

 

Edited by John Mitchell

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On 07/10/2017 at 09:53, seanlockephotography said:

 

Why would I want to give advice to someone considering getting into stock photography?  Part of the problem is "people getting into stock photography".

 

Hello Sean, I've only just realised you've joined the Alamy community, though looking at your portfolio it looks like you've been working here for a year or so. I'll be very interested to hear your insights into life here and on stock photography generally - I know you have a fine pedigree in stock photography. Among many other things we have much discussion on whether microstock type images will sell well at Alamy, especially when the same image is on both Alamy and various microstock sites.

 

I look forward to seeing your contributions to this forum.

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I'll be very interested to hear your insights into life here and on stock photography generally - I know you have a fine pedigree in stock photography.

 

Sean is a stock photography legend, consistently producing top quality work. 

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On 10/7/2017 at 12:32, Aylish said:

I think the success of stock photography relies on the amount of images you upload and the effectiveness of your tags.  People on here earn thousands.  Marketing skills also make a difference to how many photos you sell. 

 

So I think you can make a living out of this if your persistent and consistent with uploads/tags and Marketing of your photos.

 

Aylish

 

How many people on here earn thousands? Do you mean per month or per year?

 

I think very few earn thousands per month. 3 or 4 forum contributors come to mind, but the vast majority get nowhere near 1 thousand (USD) per month. 

 

I earn £200 (British pounds) per month net from 8900 images on Alamy.  But to make a modest living in the UK, just from stock images on Alamy, I would need to earn at least £2000 PCM.

 

So I need 89,000 images (of equivalent quality) as of today. So I have absolutely no chance. 

 

I set myself a target to reach £300 PCM in a couple of years but that is best I can realistically hope for. 

 

 

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8 hours ago, Aylish said:

Only going on what I have read.... oh and you have far too many similar photos if not the same. Do you use SEO? You can go a long way with good keywords.

 

What have you read? As is being noted on the 'financial results' thread, the average RPI on Alamy is a mere £0.10. So if you are average, to earn £1000 per year, you need 10,000 images. 

 

What has SEO got to do with Alamy? I don't see the connection.

 

As a newbie with just 12 images on Alamy I am not sure you have the experience to judge how many similars is too many on Alamy. Each person decides their own strategy. I spread similars across a few pseudos, with my best images on my main pseudo. 

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On 10/7/2017 at 19:59, funkyworm said:

"When I grow up I want to become a photographer."

"I'm sorry but you cant have both..."

 

:D

 

PS - very jealous of your football pictures. Being on the pitch watching the king sport and photographing it must be heaven, at least that's how I imagine it. Sad to see Robben retire, what a legend.

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32 minutes ago, Aylish said:

...

Search engine optimization it's been talked about quite a bit on here....

 

Aylish

 

Aylish, you've mentioned SEO and marketing in a few posts and I'm wondering what you mean. Are you just talking about good keywording practice or is there more to SEO in this context than that? Is marketing simply about using a personal website or social media to promote  one's own images? IAre you indicating there is something different we could be doing or simply reinforcing what we already know to be good practices in managing our images?

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You can go a long way with good keywords.

Oh! Like KCWY2m and KCWY1d you mean. Pictures of a Highland Cow, but no mention of the breed in the tags.

 

Pot and kettle ...?

 

 

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7 hours ago, Aylish said:

 I don't see why pseudo makes any difference. thought it was if you had multiple people using your account to upload photos. Then each person would be under their own name.

 

 

You don't see because you don't understand how pseudos work, and no, it's not what you "thought". Similars which appear together in a contributor search may be positioned differently in pseudos with different performances. This alone may justify their presence. Anyway, it's not you who decides how many similars are allowed, it's Alamy. IMO André doesn't have too many, in yours he does. It's up to him, not us.

Calling out seasoned contributors here isn't doing you any favours.

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On 10/12/2017 at 03:20, andremichel said:

 

How many people on here earn thousands?

...

So I need 89,000 images (of equivalent quality) as of today. So I have absolutely no chance.

 

You used your own data to project your earnings. And the result is just not realistic.

 

The implicit assumption in your projection is that you keep shooting the same kinds of images. To break out of that unrealistic scenario, you need shoot different images. Images for which  the demand/supply dynamics is way different than that for pretty pictures one can shoot by going places. It has been an open secret for many years now: business, concepts, people (model-released)... something like that.

 

GI

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Thanks to all your advice, I have spent the last week editing my descriptions. I have tested out my new wording. When I put "Mayan elder Mexico" my pic came up second on the page. However when I put "Sinclair C5" neither of my images were listed at all. Despite both having the phrases "sinclair" and "C5". Of the 2 pages shown as results half where of abandoned factories. Where am I going wrong? 

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18 minutes ago, Steviebuoy said:

Thanks to all your advice, I have spent the last week editing my descriptions. I have tested out my new wording. When I put "Mayan elder Mexico" my pic came up second on the page. However when I put "Sinclair C5" neither of my images were listed at all. Despite both having the phrases "sinclair" and "C5". Of the 2 pages shown as results half where of abandoned factories. Where am I going wrong? 

 

Start by making "Sinclair C5" a tag, rather than just "Sinclair" & "C5" as separate tags.

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6 minutes ago, losdemas said:

 

Start by making "Sinclair C5" a tag, rather than just "Sinclair" & "C5" as separate tags.

Thanks for that, I will bear that in mind when I go back over all my images.

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18 hours ago, Steviebuoy said:

Thanks to all your advice, I have spent the last week editing my descriptions. I have tested out my new wording. When I put "Mayan elder Mexico" my pic came up second on the page. However when I put "Sinclair C5" neither of my images were listed at all. Despite both having the phrases "sinclair" and "C5". Of the 2 pages shown as results half where of abandoned factories. Where am I going wrong? 

Your two images are on the results page for "sinclair c5". In fact they're higher than mine and I probably have the higher ranking, having had sales on Alamy for years, though not on those images.

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1 hour ago, spacecadet said:

Your two images are on the results page for "sinclair c5". In fact they're higher than mine and I probably have the higher ranking, having had sales on Alamy for years, though not on those images.

 

Ouch! Still, probably best not to mess with tags/captions if you're happy with what you have (I haven't looked, BTW): the changes that seem to happen with the search engine algorithm every now and again, along with the median ranking that likely applies to Steviebuoy's C5 images will likely even themselves out in time. 

 

Unless you're really on top of these things (and I most definitely am not!) then it's probably best to leave well alone or risk long-term damage to ranking? 

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3 hours ago, losdemas said:

 

Ouch! Still, probably best not to mess with tags/captions if you're happy with what you have (I haven't looked, BTW): the changes that seem to happen with the search engine algorithm every now and again, along with the median ranking that likely applies to Steviebuoy's C5 images will likely even themselves out in time. 

 

Unless you're really on top of these things (and I most definitely am not!) then it's probably best to leave well alone or risk long-term damage to ranking? 

Good news that it is now working. I immediately updated my tags after the first advice. I’m now on the Costa Brava for a week. Bearing in mind previous comments I hope to find something a little more abstract than beaches and sunsets. 

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On 10/13/2017 at 09:45, Aylish said:

3 years experience in photography means I'm not a newbie to the subject, even if i'm a newbie to the forum and alamy.

 

Aylish

 

3 years experience?!!!  Wow!  I've 27 years experience, for what it's worth...

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19 hours ago, Steviebuoy said:

........... I immediately updated my tags after the first advice. I’m now on the Costa Brava for a week............

 

Blimey, those sales must have come in quick! :D

 

John.

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On 10/15/2017 at 21:20, Colblimp said:

 

3 years experience?!!!  Wow!  I've 27 years experience, for what it's worth...

 

Yes I got my first camera 40 years ago (giving away that I am old). 

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On 10/13/2017 at 09:45, Aylish said:

Deary me people really do get hot under the collar about advice and criticism. (I can see why Philippe left) why  are you even on here if you can't take it eh?

Search engine optimization it's been talked about quite a bit on here. I know similars when i see them and people on here will say the same thing.

 

Taking a photograph of something from a diagonal composition close up and then walking away a bit and taking the same image is a duplicate. I don't see why pseudo makes any difference. thought it was if you had multiple people using your account to upload photos. Then each person would be under their own name.

 

3 years experience in photography means I'm not a newbie to the subject, even if i'm a newbie to the forum and alamy.

 

Your welcome to criticize and give me advice on my photos/Keywords (I won't get upset) :) I have changed my tone since my previous forum post about not welcoming criticism. 

 

This forum is for giving advice and helping people regarding Photography and Alamy matters.

 

I don't want to get into any argument  or aggrieve anyone on here.

 

Sorry for raining on your parade.

 

PS: everyone on here was a newbie once dosn't mean you can't give advice.

 

Aylish

 

Thanks for the ranting response. 

 

I am very appreciative to receive constructive criticism from those who have the experience and wisdom to be of help, or even from those that may be less experienced but have something useful to contribute. There is always something new we can learn. But you so far come across as an over opinionated and rather clueless novice, that would be advised to listen more and only talk when you have something worth saying.  

 

 

Edited by andremichel
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23 minutes ago, andremichel said:

 

Thanks for the ranting response. 

 

I am very appreciative to receive constructive criticism from those who have the experience and wisdom to be of help, or even from those that may be less experienced but have something useful to contribute. There is always something new we can learn. But you so far come across as an over opinionated and rather clueless novice, that would be advised to listen more and only talk when you have something worth saying.  

 

 

Welcome back Phillipe, why the name change? ;)

 

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49 minutes ago, Aylish said:

I am and am going to use twitter and pinterest to advertise my photos. 

 

That's what I thought constituted to marketing photos.

 

Hope this helps 

 

Aylish 

 

@Aylish

As the OP of this thread I am really interested in understanding your thinking behind this.  It is never something I have considered doing myself.  As you know I started this thread because I am updating the training notes I have on stock photography.  I've been selling stock for 14 years and still wouldn't call my expert at it.  I'm always keen to learn new techniques and to pass on to others what I have learned.

 

It would be really helpful for me (and others) to understand this strategy if you can give some data on how the strategy works.  As a trainer, I need facts so that I can explain it in the training I give to would-be stock photographers. 

 

1. How have you got photo buyers following you on twitter? 

2. Is there a minimum number of buyers following you needed to create the critical mass for this to work?  If so how many? 

3. I'm a bit of newbie on pinterest, but again how are you attracting photo buyers (as opposed to other photographers etc) to look at your pins? 

4. Do you have any empirical evidence that the strategy improves sales (either from your own experience or documented evidence from other sources)?

5. How are you selecting which images to promote in this way?

6. Even if you haven't seen an increase in sales, have you seen any increase in views & zooms in Alamy measures through using this sort of strategy.  If so, how much did your CTR improve?

 

Thank you for you contribution and I look forward to learning more about this strategy,

Ian.

 

 

Edited by IanButty
spelling mistake
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Approx 50 years of experience.

 

Allan

 

 

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