December 20th, 2016
Tony in Kansas City says:
I’m looking for advice on what the value of licensing real estate images to third parties is. Scott Hargis’ latest business video was excellent and sparked questions on how I should be valuing images for third parties. I’ve looked through ASMP’s articles on licensing and have looked at a few calculators for licensing but there is a lack of detailed information on how to license images specifically within the real estate photography niche.
For example, let’s say I’m charging $250 for a typical 25-photo shoot. The agent gets to use the images for the life of the listing. After the listing sells, the image use expires. The kitchen cabinet company that built the kitchen takes notice of some of the shots and purchases two images for $100 each so they can use the images forever. Different use, different value.
But here’s where I get confused. How do you set the value of the images for a large kitchen cabinet maker vs a local home stager or designer? Would each of these parties pay a different rate because of their marketing reach? How many home stagers are going to pay $100 or more per image? Do you set a flat rate for broad usage (this would weed out smaller companies with smaller budgets)? Or do you somehow estimate the company’s reach and negotiate a license fee? How is that calculated if so? Also how do licensed images to third parties compare to a commissioned shoot?
I think the reason you can’t find a good description of how to do this is that:
- The majority of real estate photographers never relicense their photos to 3rd parties. See this poll we did in March. It shows that less than 10% of PFRE readers regularly relicense their real estate photos.
- I don’t think there is one simple formula. You have to judge and negotiate each situation based on what you know about the client’s usage and situation and your status in the marketplace.
Any specific suggestions for Tony?