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Thread started 14 Oct 2016 (Friday) 14:50
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First Time Photo Licensing Questions - Read before flaming please

 
skwty
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Oct 14, 2016 14:50 |  #1

I have searched. I have read many websites and listened to a fair amount of YouTube videos.

My real issue is that none of them have made a pricing decision easier for me. A local law firm is going to be rebuilding its brand and wants to use photos of our local area, which I have taken. They have asked for pricing up to 10 images.

From what I have read, I think I am going to offer a few different options.

  • Limited use (website only)
  • Exclusive, limited use (website only)
  • Unlimited use per photo (website, other print materials)
  • Exclusive unlimited use per photo (website, other print materials)

Does this make sense to anyone? I figured they are already interested, but might not realize that other companies might want "local area" images to use, that is why I offer the "exclusive" usage with an appropriate price tag. I will find out soon what they are all planning to use the images for, I am just pre-planning.

I would just like to keep it simple, however I am aware that it might not be. I just want to make sure I am offering the law firm enough options. This is the first time I will be doing such a thing and because "perception of value" is talked about so much, I would like to get it "right" the first time. That way future situations are a little easier and priced accordingly.

In the end, I am still not sure on a price because it is just for use. Pay me per hour? That is an easy one for me. Does my hourly rate apply to this type thing?

Thank you for the help and if I have missed something in my searches (here or otherwise), please forward me to the link.

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Dan ­ Marchant
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Oct 14, 2016 21:41 |  #2

Never grant unlimited use unless you are getting unlimited money. License for the uses they want now and include a clause stating that additional uses can be added at a later date on similar terms.


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Alveric
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Oct 14, 2016 22:21 |  #3

I'd grant unlimited use, but hardly ever exclusive, unless I'm charging a hefty fee, which most clients would not pay.

I normally grant clients –especially local ones– unlimited and perpetual, NON-exclusive rights. That way I can still use the images for my portfolio, personal use, and potentially for other clients. Now, this last named usage depends on whether the client is licensing an image I took as 'stock', or whether they're comissioning the picture. I don't licence images that I took for a client to some other client, even if the contract terms (non-exclusive usage) would allow me to do so: simple and basic ethics.


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98kellrs
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Oct 14, 2016 22:31 |  #4

Don't just think about limited use in terms of where they can use the image, you also need to consider how long they can use the images for..

It's not possible for strangers on the internet to determine a specific value for your images, however in my opinion you should adopt a 'Per-image' model as opposed to an 'hourly rate' in this instance. This does a few things, it reduces the 'shock factor' that the client will experience (i.e "You want $xxxx for some pictures?!?!) and it will also put them in control of their budget which reduces their perceived risk. Doing this makes you more attractive to use compared to someone reeling off the amount of hours they put into the work and then producing a large figure.

If you want to take it one step further you can also charge more for the first photo, and progressively less for subsequent images.

Interestingly, doing the inverse of this is exactly how you dissuade clients who's work you really don't want; calculate an hourly rate, estimate how long it takes you and give them a big figure and they will quite often never use you. ;-)a


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Alveric
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Oct 14, 2016 23:08 |  #5

Another thing that I sometimes do to determine pricing is to turn to a stock agency, search for photos similar to the ones I'm quoting and use their quote system to see how much a client would pay were he to forego hiring me and use stock pictures instead. The stock price thus sets a kind of baseline, to which I can add or deduct as I see fit.

Since you mention that these are photos '[you] have taken', I'm assuming they're not commissioning the photography, thus, pricing based on an hourly rate is rather inappropriate.


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Scott ­ Spellman
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Oct 15, 2016 10:27 |  #6

Gettyimages.com is good tool to view licensing options and pricing. I also often ask new corporate clients "what is your budget?" to make sure their potential spend is realistic and that I am not wasting time on a quote.




  
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skwty
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Oct 15, 2016 13:00 |  #7

Alveric wrote in post #18157230 (external link)
I'd grant unlimited use, but hardly ever exclusive, unless I'm charging a hefty fee, which most clients would not pay.

I normally grant clients –especially local ones– unlimited and perpetual, NON-exclusive rights. That way I can still use the images for my portfolio, personal use, and potentially for other clients. Now, this last named usage depends on whether the client is licensing an image I took as 'stock', or whether they're comissioning the picture. I don't licence images that I took for a client to some other client, even if the contract terms (non-exclusive usage) would allow me to do so: simple and basic ethics.


Thank you very much for the information. You have explained things very clearly and I appreciate that.


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skwty
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Oct 15, 2016 13:01 |  #8

98kellrs wrote in post #18157235 (external link)
Don't just think about limited use in terms of where they can use the image, you also need to consider how long they can use the images for..

It's not possible for strangers on the internet to determine a specific value for your images, however in my opinion you should adopt a 'Per-image' model as opposed to an 'hourly rate' in this instance. This does a few things, it reduces the 'shock factor' that the client will experience (i.e "You want $xxxx for some pictures?!?!) and it will also put them in control of their budget which reduces their perceived risk. Doing this makes you more attractive to use compared to someone reeling off the amount of hours they put into the work and then producing a large figure.

If you want to take it one step further you can also charge more for the first photo, and progressively less for subsequent images.

Interestingly, doing the inverse of this is exactly how you dissuade clients who's work you really don't want; calculate an hourly rate, estimate how long it takes you and give them a big figure and they will quite often never use you. ;-)a

Thank you for your input. I think I am going to go with a per image license up to 10. I think going higher for first and coming down for each of the last 9 is a good way to start.


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skwty
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Oct 15, 2016 13:03 |  #9

Alveric wrote in post #18157248 (external link)
Another thing that I sometimes do to determine pricing is to turn to a stock agency, search for photos similar to the ones I'm quoting and use their quote system to see how much a client would pay were he to forego hiring me and use stock pictures instead. The stock price thus sets a kind of baseline, to which I can add or deduct as I see fit.

Since you mention that these are photos '[you] have taken', I'm assuming they're not commissioning the photography, thus, pricing based on an hourly rate is rather inappropriate.

I did that. I have gone through Getty Images (as mentioned by Scott Spellman here), but I am blown away at how much is charged per image PER resolution.

This is a local company, which I would like to spread the word as appropriate, so I think I am going to set a price for 1 image and come down as they want to license more in the same "pack" of 10.

Thank you for all of the input!


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skwty
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Oct 15, 2016 13:04 |  #10

Scott Spellman wrote in post #18157491 (external link)
Gettyimages.com is good tool to view licensing options and pricing. I also often ask new corporate clients "what is your budget?" to make sure their potential spend is realistic and that I am not wasting time on a quote.


That is a good point. In the meantime, I am awaiting a budget for this and once it arrives, I think it will be a little easier to nail down some prices. thank you for the input!


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skwty
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Oct 15, 2016 13:07 |  #11

Dan Marchant wrote in post #18157214 (external link)
Never grant unlimited use unless you are getting unlimited money. License for the uses they want now and include a clause stating that additional uses can be added at a later date on similar terms.

Agreed. Thank you.

Alveric wrote in post #18157248 (external link)
Another thing that I sometimes do to determine pricing is to turn to a stock agency, search for photos similar to the ones I'm quoting and use their quote system to see how much a client would pay were he to forego hiring me and use stock pictures instead. The stock price thus sets a kind of baseline, to which I can add or deduct as I see fit.

Since you mention that these are photos '[you] have taken', I'm assuming they're not commissioning the photography, thus, pricing based on an hourly rate is rather inappropriate.

At this time I am not commissioned for more photos, but that has been brought up. I guess I'll cross that bridge when we get there as the original license talk stems from photos already taken.


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Oct 15, 2016 15:23 |  #12

skwty wrote in post #18157629 (external link)
[..]
At this time I am not commissioned for more photos, but that has been brought up. I guess I'll cross that bridge when we get there as the original license talk stems from photos already taken.

One more reason why I strive and advise not to top it the stiff rights and usage maven and stick to a KISS pricing strategy. Legalese and restrictions alienate clients. Besides, these ones are lawyers: coming up to them with a scheme full of price tiers, provisos and restrictions might put you in an embarrassing or even disadvantageous position.

On the other hand, the promise of 'future work' is a negotiating tactic commonly used by clients to get cheap prices and discounts. Until those promises have materialised a couple of times, once you calculate a price that's fair, do hold your ground.


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Dan ­ Marchant
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Oct 15, 2016 22:43 |  #13

Alveric wrote in post #18157726 (external link)
On the other hand, the promise of 'future work' is a negotiating tactic commonly used by clients to get cheap prices and discounts. Until those promises have materialised a couple of times, once you calculate a price that's fair, do hold your ground.

+100 to this. Never give a discount on the "promise" of future work. There is a good chance the future work will not materialise and more importantly you will have established a low price point in your clients mind.

Offer discounts for actual subsequent projects when they materialise or for bulk orders (first image full price then discounts).


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skwty
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Oct 17, 2016 14:00 |  #14

Alveric wrote in post #18157726 (external link)
One more reason why I strive and advise not to top it the stiff rights and usage maven and stick to a KISS pricing strategy. Legalese and restrictions alienate clients. Besides, these ones are lawyers: coming up to them with a scheme full of price tiers, provisos and restrictions might put you in an embarrassing or even disadvantageous position.

On the other hand, the promise of 'future work' is a negotiating tactic commonly used by clients to get cheap prices and discounts. Until those promises have materialised a couple of times, once you calculate a price that's fair, do hold your ground.

Thank you again, your words have been very helpful!

Dan Marchant wrote in post #18157972 (external link)
+100 to this. Never give a discount on the "promise" of future work. There is a good chance the future work will not materialise and more importantly you will have established a low price point in your clients mind.

Offer discounts for actual subsequent projects when they materialise or for bulk orders (first image full price then discounts).

I understand this. Thank you so much for your reply. I am a little better off now, however, I am still not sure what to charge for "10 non-stock, images, for website use" in terms of a license. According to a person I am communicating with at the law firm, the firm paid just $300 for 5 STOCK images last time around. That was just for a brochure.

Does it make sense to price based on that information? I know I sound like I want someone to give me an answer 100%, but really I am hoping other people have done this and I might be able to "imitate" what they have done.

Please comment again if this is the case. Thank you all for your help to this point!


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Oct 17, 2016 15:47 |  #15

skwty wrote in post #18159356 (external link)
I understand this. Thank you so much for your reply. I am a little better off now, however, I am still not sure what to charge for "10 non-stock, images, for website use" in terms of a license. According to a person I am communicating with at the law firm, the firm paid just $300 for 5 STOCK images last time around. That was just for a brochure.

So they bought some generic, non-exclusive images last time that they weren't happy about (thus why they are looking elsewhere this time around), and they want a few different tiers of pricing to figure out what they can afford. Seems fair enough.

if you priced the images at $50 per image for non-exclusive website use only (not suggesting this is your price, but giving you a frame of reference), I could see pricing the exclusive limited use around $500 (10x), unlimited use non-exclusive also $500 (10x), and unlimited use exclusive around $2,500 per photo (25x). Now, if they want to give you a more accurate number of distribution, I could see justifying a 1-year limited-use for print and web (not to exceed XXX,000 brochures or catalogs) being around $150 to $300 per image (3x to 6x), which is probably much more in line with what they were expecting to pay. This is why understanding the volume and actual rights usage is necessary.

For some clients, paying 25x a limited use / licensed rate to be the only client in the world allowed to use that image makes sense. I have no doubt that clients like Nike pay that much for specific photos. The "jumpman" imagery, which I believe is now fully trademarked, has made 100's of Millions of dollars for them. If that image cost them $1m for unlimited usage, it is still too cheap. For most, getting an accurate estimate based on the actual scale and usage is more logical.


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First Time Photo Licensing Questions - Read before flaming please
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