The Danger of Beautiful Images
Such a large proportion of marketing efforts are visually based and this means that we all need images, and lots of them. This is easy for the professional photographer or the graphic designer, but for the rest of us, it is a constant struggle to maintain a consistent and appealing look. The battle is in trying to find out which images you can use, unfortunately images have copywrite attached to them, and just because you find an image on the internet, does not mean you are entitled to use it. Yes, you might get a way with it, but do you know what happens when you get caught? Fines and you have to remove the image. No one wants to do that, and it is unfair to the person whose images you have used.
There are a couple of solutions for you…
• Pinterest will let you share other users images to build up your Pinterest profile – however you can’t use someone else’s Pinterest photo to direct traffic to your content. This is good to build up the other, non sales focused, content. • Buy Stock Images – There are a number of different sites with varying packages. Use them, it is the easiest way to maintain your image and without stealing images. • Use Google Image Search – There is an advanced function within Google Images that lets your search for images that you can use for commercial use – just be careful to check the XXXXX section to make sure there are not conditions that you need to abide by • Compfight.com is another great website to use –It searches Flickr for images that you are allowed to use, again read the instructions – some simply require that you say where the image came from, some have heavier conditions in place. • If you are using social media, use hashtags to have people engage with your product and keep track. If someone uploads a photo of your product you can repost that image and acknowledge who took the photo – This is a great brand building tool and should be used, especially on Instagram!
The moral of the story – just because you found it online, doesn’t mean you can use it. Be careful with the imagery you use and it won’t come back to bite you later on.