Protecting Your Brand with Proper Use of Stock Images
It happens too often: open a magazine, and the same image sits just pages away or even right next to an ad representing two different companies. Both The Wall Street Journal and The Today Show reported that images are being recycled, and this confuses consumers when they associate images with brand. These reports skimmed over one important fact, however, companies can protect their images from being reused by simply buying the rights.
INBOX spoke with Stacey Goldberg, director of visual content for SuperStock, the online image service provider located at www.superstock.com, to answer important questions on the use of stock images.
INBOX: Please describe the danger of images being overused in the marketplace, especially by competing magazines?
Stacey Goldberg: The ease of licensing royalty free content continues to attract publishing clients. The quality of royalty free continues to increase, in addition to the hefty volume of available content hitting the market on a daily basis. With so many publishers fishing in the same image pools there are bound to be duplicates. With so many competitive magazines available on the newsstand every month, publishers should make every effort to attract readers by utilizing distinctive images to set themselves apart from the rest.
INBOX: Why is this completely counterproductive to the importance of brand building and image awareness?
Goldberg: If a publication is looking for devoted readers every month, the use of unique imagery will build the brand awareness publishers desire. If the reader cannot differentiate one magazine from another on the newsstand, the potential to select a competitor’s publication is far more probable.
INBOX: What options do publishers have to ensure that the images they license will not be seen in their competitors’ magazine or anywhere else?
Goldberg: Publishers have the option of licensing Rights Managed imagery. One advantage of licensing Rights Managed content is the knowledge of which companies have used the image in the past. In addition, exclusivity is an option when licensing Rights Managed imagery. Publishers may opt for either limited exclusivity or complete exclusivity. Obviously costs vary depending on how restricted the image is. Exclusivity, gives the publisher the freedom of mind knowing that the image is restricted.