Stock images (photo's available for you to legitimately download & re-use) are widely available across many Australian and International stock repository sites. They can be a wonderful inexpensive way to give that professional edge to your business website, blog, social media updates or presentation slides, but there are some really important things for us to remember as allied health professionals:
1. Don’t white coat it!
I find often if your search term is based around “health” terminology, your results will feature medical staff in white coats or similar attire with clipboards. Likewise, if you search for “professional” or a business-related term, you will be delivered business-suited people. Unless this is how you dress in your practice – don’t settle for these images. Your consumers will be slightly confused if their first touchpoint with your brand is your website or social media site displaying these images, to only arrive for their appointment to meet you dressed differently.
2. Keep your brand in mind
This extends from point 1. When you use stock images, there is a risk of morphing into generic visual brand land – where you veer from your own brand visuals into something similar to everyone else! Have your brand in mind when selecting images. Don’t settle for no face man (below), how does that reflect your brand? Remember, it’s not only patients to keep in mind but referrers in your network that will develop their own perceptions of your brand.
3. Plan before you search.
A downside of visiting stock image websites is that they are great time wasters! Have a plan jotted down with the types of images you need and some specific search terms that may assist you find the images.
4. Check the cost & rights
Depending on the site you are sourcing images from, the price and currency may vary. It may state images are $1 each but it may be referring to $US. This will add up over time. Some sites offer discounts off bulk purchases (e.g. 11 images for $10 instead of $1 each). You also need to be aware of the type of license you are purchasing the images through. I use Canva for many stock images, and the good people there have also compiled a great list of free stock photo sites – I have popped the link below for you.
5. Don't forget your own photos.
Remember to also use your own photos when possible! Last week, I blogged about having photos taken in your business, it’s important to try and use your own pictures with you in your business.
Have a great week!
Click here to check out some great stock sites.