Although your words might be compelling, blog posts and pages with all text will make readers pass you by faster than anything. There’s nothing like a compelling image that matches your message to make someone curious about what you have to say.
Most of the time I use iStock for the images on my sites. Although they’re pretty inexpensive ($1.50 – $2.00 for small images) the cost can add up over time. If you’re willing to spend a few minutes searching, you can find some quality images on Flickr licensed for commercial use. The image to the left is one I found while doing a search during the demonstration video for this post.
Stock photos can sometimes look too sterile or staged. I’ve seen the same image used many times on various sites and even brochures. It’s easy to spot them because they can have a common look. Photographers who post on Flickr aren’t trying to please stock editors, they’re just showing off their work. If you spend some time you can find some very unique and creative work that matches your message. And the price is right…Free.
However you have to be certain that the work is licensed through Creative Commons for commercial use. Also the license carries the requirement of giving attribution (credit) to the artist. A very small price to pay. I go the extra step of embedding the photographers Flickr photostream link in the image (see photo below). At the end of the post you will see the attribution link I provided for the artist.
Of course just like the bargain store, sometimes you have to kiss a few frogs until you find the right image. And sometimes you come away empty handed. But it’s worth the time to check it out. I’ve found a few photographers I really like and visit their streams when I’m doing a search.
I don’t often receive compliments or comments about photos,, but every time I have, they’ve been from Flickr.
The video below shows you how to use Flickr’s Advanced Search to find photos licensed under Creative Commons. Click this link for the Creative Commons Attribution search page in Flickr. If you’re unsure about how and when to use an image in your business, it’s best to contact the photographer directly. Most likely they’ll be flattered that you like their work.
Photo by:Aussiegal BTW, she does some very nice work so check out her Flickr photostream.