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12/28/2008 12:13:01 AM · #1
Hi Everyone!

Today I was fooling around with a fairly expensive bottle of cologne, and got some shots that I think might interest the makers of the cologne. I checked out their website and their photographs are nothing to shake a stick at, and IMO mine beat the heck out of them. When I was in school, I had a professor who told us how he had sold a product shot by getting a hold of the marketing director and asking if they were interested - but he was a little vauge on the details. Whats the common practice these days for selling specific products to the actual company? Any input on this would be appreciated! Thanks

R
12/28/2008 12:54:27 AM · #2
Just putting this up on the forum floor again, anybody have any idea?
12/28/2008 12:54:54 AM · #3
I don't think there is a common practice, because that's not really how things work. If you want to make such an image, you should do so as a portfolio piece with no expectation of selling it to the company. That's not to say you can't send it to them or that they won't come knocking, but you really shouldn't expect anything in return.

Originally posted by Cidpilot:

Hi Everyone!

Today I was fooling around with a fairly expensive bottle of cologne, and got some shots that I think might interest the makers of the cologne. I checked out their website and their photographs are nothing to shake a stick at, and IMO mine beat the heck out of them. When I was in school, I had a professor who told us how he had sold a product shot by getting a hold of the marketing director and asking if they were interested - but he was a little vauge on the details. Whats the common practice these days for selling specific products to the actual company? Any input on this would be appreciated! Thanks

R
12/28/2008 01:07:43 AM · #4
To clarify, I certainly didn't make the photo with the expectation of selling it to them, It just happened to work out well- and a visit to their site gave me the idea of asking them if they were interested (as the odds of them seeing it in my port are slim). I've done some wedding and portrait work, but never any product sales.. thus the ??'s. I'm just looking for some advice on how to proceed and wondered if anyone had any ideas.
12/28/2008 02:09:48 AM · #5
Anyone else have any clue before I head off to bed and repost in the morning?
12/28/2008 02:23:24 AM · #6
I learned long time ago this simple nugget: " If you ask them to buy, they might say no. If you don't ask them, they will never be able to say yes."
12/28/2008 03:00:54 AM · #7
Originally posted by Ivo:

I learned long time ago this simple nugget: " If you ask them to buy, they might say no. If you don't ask them, they will never be able to say yes."

Generally speaking, this is good advice, however it doesn't always work that way...

A while ago I bought a set of Hogentogler test sieves for one of my hobbies. Just for the heck of it I took some photos of the sieves and put them on my web site in my Hobbies gallery. A few days later a representative of Hogentogler was perusing photos on my web site and saw the photos of the sieves. The company liked my photos so much they contacted me and purchased usage rights to them.

You can see the photos on my web site. You can see them in use on the company's web site at Hogentogler & Co., Inc. sieves.

So, in a sense, I didn't ask them, but they said yes anyway. :D

12/30/2008 10:46:49 AM · #8
Hey Richie,

Spazmo99 is right, there really is not common practice for this sort of thing but it certainly can't hurt to contact them and ask if they're intereted. My main advice would be to only send them a lo-res image to look at and read the fine print on their web site about submissions because some companies specify they ANY unsolicited upload or email becomes there property completely. It'd be a shame to loose your rights to it by being careless.

Clay
anthonyimages.com
12/30/2008 11:52:43 AM · #9
By all means, contact them. Search their website or call them if you have to and find out who their marketing director is - that's the person you want to contact directly. If you send your query to a generic address it will most likely get discarded or ignored.

When you make contact, tell them that you are a photographer and have produced an image of their product that you think might be of use to them. (You don't have to tell them that you were practicing your skills or fooling around with lights, etc.) If you're writing an email, make sure it is written like a professional cover letter. If you get a phone number, have some notes on what you are going to say. Sell yourself as a professional - if you sound like some yokel with a camera who happened to get a lucky shot, they probably won't be interested.

Make sure you have some idea of what your photo is worth! This site might help with that. Write down a couple of different price ranges depending on their usage, and then if they ask for a quote, make them specify their intended use and quote a price that reflects that. Don't be afraid to quote a fair price just because you think it might be too much - better to negotiate down than undersell yourself from the start.

If they make an offer, make sure that it is fair to you. Granted, you'll have to make the call here and decide if you absolutely have to receive money, or if having a portfolio piece and a publishing credit is enough. Or maybe they get this one for free and agree to come to you next time they have a paying assignment. You have to decide what you think is a good deal.

Above all, sell yourself as a professional; get any agreement in writing, make sure your correspondence is professional and well written, and that any phone conversations are the same. If you sound like just another yokel with a camera, they're much more likely to discount you altogether, or to try and take advantage of you.
01/13/2009 12:34:51 PM · #10
I photgraphed a factory with a Nikon D40.

Contacted the Marketing Director of the Factory.

E-mailed him the shot.

They bought the image rights for 150GBP, paid for half the camera.

It can be done, you just have to contact the right people.
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