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Web is full of photo sites. Some of them are free, some require payment. They all offer different services and ways to use. One of the most popular photo sites is Flickr. It is my personal choice of a photo site and it is where many of the photos and other images seen on this site are available on. In the following I will give a brief introduction to Flickr and using it for marketing.
Flickr allows it’s users to post photos, other images and videos to be viewed by other Flickr users, everyone or just selected users. Flickr users can also post comments and notes on photos as well as add them as favorites. Images may be given a description, Creative Commons license and be added on a map. Flickr available as both free and paid (aka pro) version. The free version includes advertisement and has limitations, such as a limit in photo size and the amount of photos. For any serious use I recommend buying the pro account.
Flickr offers different ways to organize and share photos. These ways include tagging the photos, adding them to sets, galleries and groups. Permission to add tags to photos can also be given to other Flickr users and that way make the organizing collaborative. Photos can be shared on other sites as well as on Flickr groups. Other services offer easy ways to make and sell prints of the images. For example the popular business card printer MOO can import images from Flickr. Creating photobooks and calendars has also made pretty easy by other services.
For business usage Flickr has some limitations. Commercial usage is forbidden on the terms of service, so any direct advertisement is out of the picture. But using imagination helps. Instead of sharing ads, a company can upload quality photos of their products and personnel with describing but not directly advertising descriptions. Finding appropriate Flickr groups helps sharing the photos and creating buzz around the account. Another workaround is posting private photos and videos, only viewable by contacts. As well as with social media in general, engaging to conversations and being active and generous is a requirement for successful Flickr marketing.