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  • #26715
    Profile photo of George Sheldon
    George Sheldon
    Participant

    Since it’s June 1st, I think it is a great time to ask everyone what they are doing to promote/market their site and Symzio.

    I have made significant progress moving myself up in Google and Bing.  I am happily getting a good ranking with the keywords “symzio independent artist”.  Tweeting and blogging has been helping a lot.  For the past two months, I have been posting a Photo of the Day that I have in Symzio – it all seems to be helping.

    So what have you been doing?

    #26719
    Profile photo of steveh
    steveh
    Participant

    You are doing great at tweeting George, and thanks for mentioning me! I have finally started updating my blog and Facebook page again and did mention a sale on Fine Art America that I linked back to my site. I’ll have to get tweeting now!

    #26723
    Profile photo of George Sheldon
    George Sheldon
    Participant

    Steve,

    Tweeting does work!  Every time I tweet something about Symzio or images available on other sites (as well as my own), I get followers or likes.  I intend to keep tweeting with even more frequency.

    While I am still formulating an updated marketing plan for myself for the rest of this year, I am going to attack Linkedin.  Although I have an account there, I am not using it that much. That will change, too. It is my opinion that there are more likely buyers on Twitter and Linkedin than other social networking sites, but I will continue to maintain Facebook postings. But I will be pushing Symzio on Linkedin very soon.

    I notice images that I have on my own site are selling on some of the major sites but are not selling on my own site. So that tells me my images are worthy of purchase, but the buyers are not yet coming directly to me. Have you found the same thing?

    George

     

    #26725
    Profile photo of steveh
    steveh
    Participant

    Hi George

    Yes, I get many sales on all the other agencies (including high priced ones like Getty and Alamy, but no-one comes to my own site (or Symzio) for my images. I just posted a blog post about the various agencies and earnings from each on Backyard Silver:

    http://www.backyardsilver.com/2016/06/earnings-from-stock-photography-may-2016/

    The biggest issue in my mind is that many larger buyers have accounts with their chosen agency and so they go there as their first port of call and find the image they want (which could be mine, of course). The smaller guys who just want occasional images either go to agencies that allow buy as you need purchases, or they search on Google but are looking to get the image for free. I am sure we are appearing in those searches, but they don’t really want to pay. Illustrators seems to do better on self hosted sites (perhaps because there are less “free” choices out there.

    I have a lot of contacts on LinkedIn, but they are all techy type people – I’m happy to link with you if it would help.

    Steve

    #26733
    Profile photo of George Sheldon
    George Sheldon
    Participant

    Steve,

    If your theory about potential buyers is correct – and I have no reason to think that it is not – then we need to being to battle that.  We got to start thinking about why it is better to come to the independent artist and support them. We need to get that message out.  Perhaps some like declaring August as support the Independent Artist month?  Or a news article / press release?  Maybe we need a better marketing slogan?

    It is interesting to see if your images come up on Google Image searches.  I notice mine come up pretty fast if you use symzio as part of the search. For example, in Google Search “symzio amish” and look at the Images.  I practically own that keyword. In Bing, not so much.  Yahoo is slightly better.

    I am a couple days away from announcing a new marketing push for my own brand.  I am going to continue to push the Symzio message, especially with my new initiative.

    Question: should future marketing plans be discussed on a public board, or not?

     

    George

     

    #26737
    Profile photo of steveh
    steveh
    Participant

    On the public board – I doubt if any established agency looks here for competitive advantage, so I don’t see a real issue there. Our big issue is that no-one knows about Symzio (and would never use that in a search via Google – if they knew about us, why not come to the site instead?). Most people would search for the subject in Google images and the more knowledgeable might put stock photo in the search as well. In that sort of search for Amish, symzio doesn’t appear as far as I can see – there are just too many other stock agencies out there. For really scarce images (Mongomo stock photos), for instance, our sites do show up and rank better than Alamy (my photos on both my own site and Alamy). But we need someone without an agency account looking for a pretty unusual photo to get that sale. So far, no-one has!

    I think getting a support your independent artist month would be great – especially if we could get everyone who has a self hosted site on other platforms as well. You might get some traction on the Microstock group forum although you will get a lot of grief about Symbiostock at the same time.

    I think I still am doing this as a bit of a vanity project. Would be nice to be proved otherwise though!

    #26742
    Profile photo of Andre
    Andre
    Participant

    Personally, I think one of the best ways to go in regards to promoting Symbiostock and Symzio is keep publishing highest quality image material, well titled, captioned, and keyworded. Don’t publish many similars (I’d say one horizontal and one vertical one max), and don’t dump the stuff on your own site you already couldn’t sell on other sites. Potential customers are not stupid, they won’t purchase sub standard material just because it’s available, or cheap, or easy to buy. Oh, and use the Symzio widget prominently on your site.
    In other words keep the highest possible quality level, publish new material frequently, and be patient. It will work, sooner or later.

    And to stay on topic, I’ve finally picked up the camera again after quite some time of construction and remodeling work at my house when I simply didn’t have time for any stock photography. But now there’s lots of good stuff in the pipeline.

    #26744
    Profile photo of George Sheldon
    George Sheldon
    Participant

    Steve,

    My thoughts follow yours.  I do think that for the most of us, we are relying on search engines to steer potential customers to our sites. If that is true, then we must play the SEO game.

    I am pleased to be now ranked under the listings of the major stock agencies in Google Searches.  Making it to that first page is significant.  My point about the search of “symzio amish” and looking under Google images is that we have been getting our images indexed on Symzio and that Google knows they are out there. Now what do we d to get potential buyers to know we are out there? Back to the basic question of what are we doing to continue the marketing/promotion.

    George

    #26745
    Profile photo of George Sheldon
    George Sheldon
    Participant

    Andre,

     

    I can’t wait to see more of your outstanding work. I agree with you about posting quality work.  My problem is that if sell one, I want to sell 10. If I sell 10, I want 100 sales, etc.  While I cannot do anything about sales on the major stock sites, I feel like I can capture more potential customers and prospects to my site, if I stay on good terms with the SEO.

     

    George

    #26746
    Profile photo of Andre
    Andre
    Participant

    George, thank you very much.

    #26747
    Profile photo of George Sheldon
    George Sheldon
    Participant

    Andre:

    In an attempt to keep this post on target with the title, I am starting another thread that I’d like to hve your expert opinion!  It has to do with your horizontal and vertical comment.  Thanks!

     

    George

     

    #26750
    Profile photo of Andre
    Andre
    Participant

    Thanks, I don’t know about that expert part but I’ll try to help wherever I can. 😉

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