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How to Avoid Licensing Fines - What You Should Know About Stock Photos

Marketing experts know that a fitting slogan and visual appeal are essential to achieve real success with your campaigns. Original and meaningful graphics play an important role here. Images convey emotions and are usually much more effective than words. Against this background, companies quite often use providers such as Getty Images, Shutterstock and Stocksy United for stock photos. Not infrequently with dire consequences - with insufficient image usage rights, licensing fines in a six-figure range beckon.

What is a stock photo?

As a rule, stock photos are pictures that are taken to be kept in stock in order to finally be made available to a broad mass of interested parties on specially developed portals. In the recent past, stock suppliers have accumulated a near-endless selection of images in order to make them as easily accessible as possible to the creative minds of the corporate world. So you don't have to send a photographer to the Caribbean to obtain a picture of a dream beach. This can be done conveniently via the stock photo portal.

Simply get started?

Basically nothing stands in the way of your perfect stock photo. Simply register on one of the portals and browse for the suitable picture. However, there is one essential and pressing thing that must be taken into account - the usage rights. Insufficient knowledge about this and an associated illegal use can quickly become very expensive. This must, of course, be avoided.

A distinction is usually made between "royalty free" (images for free use) and "rights managed" (images with limited rights of use or publication). In addition, there are freely negotiated licenses with photographers. For example, sports clubs are often authorized by photographers to use the pictures they take for their own purposes. However, sharing these with third parties is often not permitted.

In addition to royalty free and rights managed, it is particularly important to distinguish between single-user and multi-user licenses for stock photos. A multi-user license is necessary, for example, if several companies in a group want to use the same image, or if a creative agency makes stock images available to the company from its own pool. Here you will find further interesting information on the subject of image rights. In any case one should become familiar with image rights, before impulsively acquiring photos on the respective portals.

Where can I find the perfect photo?

Once you are properly informed, only one question remains: which of the countless stock suppliers online has the perfect picture for me? In an ideal case, you of course want to compare the pictures of the different providers. However, this is often tedious, as the pictures of the various providers unfortunately cannot be seen at a glance. The content marketplace Contidio has dedicated itself to this problem. There you can dock your existing contracts with stock providers and with only one account view the results across all providers and summarize these in projects. With this help, the perfect stock photo will easily and conveniently find its way to your company and with the right license at that.


So, what are you waiting for? The photos are waiting; your team is ready for action. Make sure that your next project is the eye-catcher - without a licensing fine, of course.