We’ve been writing a lot lately about including video in your marketing content and it got us thinking about how important it is to have compelling images in your blog posts, on your website and in your social media posts to Facebook, Instagram and of course, Pinterest. Sure, most of us are armed with smartphone these days so an image is just a click away, but if you need a on-going source of professional quality images that you have the right to use, there are some great resources out there to take advantage of. Let’s dive in and cover four of our go-to sources for images:

iStockphoto.com – We create 8+ blog posts a week, plus guides and other useful content for our readers so we are always in need of good images. We’ve used iStockphoto for a while now. iStockphoto has been around since 2000 and according to their site, “All iStock files are royalty-free, which means you only have to pay once to use the file multiple times. We even offer a Legal Guarantee – our promise that content used within the terms of the license agreement will not infringe on any copyright, moral right, trademark or other intellectual property right, or violate any right of privacy or publicity.”

When purchasing images you can pick one of three choices: credits, subscription or corporate plan. When searching for images you can sort by category, price, image size, etc.

My one wish list for istockphoto is to carry more images that feature more casual office environments that suit (no pun intended) the modern workplace. It can be challenging to find images of people working without someone in a woven shirt and tie.

Getty Images- Getty is the grandaddy of online images having been around since 1995. They are known for being high-end and having superior quality images. Their site explains, “Our extensive image and stock illustration offering spans everything from conceptual rights-managed and royalty-free creative images to up-to-the-minute editorial coverage – including news, sport and celebrity photos – and timeless vintage photography.” They also offer video clips and original music tracks

Prices for images on Getty are determined by if they are royalty-free or rights-managed. The site states, “Prices for royalty-free licensing are based on size, and are available right when you select an image. Rights-managed licensing requires a few extra clicks to define usage specifications and establish pricing.”

Getty has such an extensive collection of images that they even have a search tips section of their site and a blog.

ThinkStock – We just signed up for ThinkStock which promises, “Access to millions of royalty-free images selected from Getty Images, iStockphoto and Jupiterimages.” They offer multiple purchasing options, and are are great for teams (like ours) that need many images on a daily basis.

When we signed up we selected their 1-year Pro Subscription which allows you 25 downloads a day. They also offer image packs and monthly subscriptions. We’ve loved being able to choose whatever image we want and not having to worry about pricing or blowing our budget.  This seems to be a mission of ThinkStock’s as they say, “We want you to stop worrying about whether the images you love for your projects have the correct licence or worrying about making sure invoices get paid, or about tracking an image or staying within budget and on time.”

Fotolia – Fotolia has been around since 2005 and became the first worldwide microstock organization to offer both crowdsourced and professional images on one site. According to their site, “Our crowdsourced library includes millions of royalty-free images, vectors, illustrations and video footage clips. Buyers access over 22 million images, vectors and videos at great prices, while contributing artists receive the highest commission rate on the market. Fotolia’s trusted business platform and technology helps facilitate millions of downloads every year. All images offered on Fotolia are royalty-free, and can be used for any design project or document, with no time limits or restrictions on the number of printed copies.”

Fotolia has two purchasing options: Credits and subscription.

What other online image sources do you use for your content marketing efforts? Share away in the comments.

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