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Make Money Selling Stock Photos

easy tips on selling micro stock photography

Stock Photography Community

Tip #7: How Many Agencies Are Right For You?

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Should you select one agency or several to represent your images? The answer is really up to you and how much time you have to spend uploading work.

If you stick with just one agency, you only need to upload once. Plus if the agency offers an exclusivity option for each image, you'll make more money with each download. Exclusivity means that you promise to upload that specific image only to one agency and no other. (See chart on Dreamstime: http://www.dreamstime.com/sellimages). Some agencies also offer the photographer more money if they sign-on as an exclusive photographer for that agency, meaning you upload images ONLY to that one agency and no other. So you can have an exclusive image, as well as be an exclusive photographer. Dreamstime offers this type of tier structure. So by picking just one agency you save time and have the opportunity to make extra money per photo.

But here's the downside - not all buyers shop around to different agencies looking for just the right image. Most buyers have one or two favorite agencies they like to work with and they never look any further. So if your photos are listed with only one agency, you may be missing those buyers who shop with a different agency and the opportunity to sell to a wider audience.

Here's my take on it: do what's best for you. I did all of the work to get into two different agencies, only to find that I sell well at one and not so well on the other. And because some of my images are listed on both agency directories, I loose the ability to make a larger commission by using the "exclusive option".

The mailbox photo above is a good example. At Dreamstime it's a consistent seller, but at my other agency it has yet to sell even once! If I had uploaded just to Dreamstime and opted for exclusivity, I would have been making a higher commission each time the image sells.

The other factor is time. I have a full-time job (as most microstock photographers do) and not much extra time for photography. Rather than spending all my evenings and weekends uploading images to various agencies, I have come to the conclusion that working with one agency and having more time to enjoy my photography is best for me. If I did microstock full-time, I would most likely choose to upload to 4 or 5 agencies.

Consider your own situation and whether you have the time and ambition to deal with multiple agencies. If you decide to stick to one agency, you can always add another in the future when you're ready to branch out.

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posted by La Roach, 5:39 PM AddThis Social Bookmark Button AddThis Feed Button



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Please regeister at my News Page and submit your stories now!

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commented by Blogger Amos, November 15, 2007 at 2:06 AM  

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