Company spotlight: Exclusive Q&A with Shutterstock’s CMO, Jeff Weiser

Payoneer is proud to announce that we are now working with Shutterstock!
We sat down with Jeff Weiser, Chief Marketing Officer at Shutterstock, to learn more about this innovative creative platform.

Introduction to Shutterstock

What is Shutterstock and who is it for?

Shutterstock is a New York based technology company and leading global provider of high-quality licensed photographs, vectors, illustrations, videos and music to businesses, marketing agencies and media organizations around the world. Working with its growing community of over 225,000 contributors, Shutterstock adds hundreds of thousands of images each week, and currently has more than 150 million images and 7 million video clips available.

What makes Shutterstock different from other stock photography companies?

Shutterstock is first and foremost a technology company, when it launched in 2003, it was the first stock photo provider to make a subscription model available for customers, completely disrupting the industry. Shutterstock invests heavily in its platform with industry leading search technology that allows our customers to find exactly the right image from our enormous catalogue as well as the addition of a new generation of workflow tools for customers.

Most recently, Shutterstock introduced new search technology including ‘color search’ and ‘more from this artist’ to make the work in the library even more discoverable. These are just a few of the new features Shutterstock has on the horizon that will allow its global customer base to dig deeper, filter in multiple ways, and get to the content they want faster and with increased accuracy.

From a contributor standpoint, Shutterstock empowers artists by giving them access to reach millions. Shutterstock serves 1.7 million customers from 150+ countries and has paid over $500 million in  contributor earnings.  See 2017 Contributor Earnings Report.

What types of creative content/photography are most popular right now?

Trends and fashions come and go, and our contributors need to stay ahead of what the market demands. To help with this, every year Shutterstock publishes a Creative Trends Report that takes the vast amount of download and search data that the company has and distills the information into a guide that defines what customers are going to be looking for in the year ahead.  This year the four trends that defined the landscape were Head up Display, white textured background, halftone and emojis. The cultural trends were a look at nostalgia, faith and future technology, while in design trends nature and tech created an interesting tension.
2017 Creative Trends Report.


For Contributors (Photographers, Videographer, Music & Illustrators) :

Once my content is online on Shutterstock, how can I best promote it?

Contributors can easily earn more by promoting their work and collection on social media. It is easy to share sets on Twitter or Facebook with a broader audience. Many of our prolific contributors also have their own personal websites that act as a showcase for their images.

If contributors want to earn more cash from the site, Shutterstock also has an important referral program. Every Contributor referral earns you 10% of the sale price of each of their downloads for the first year. Every Customer referral earns you up to 20% of the price of their first purchase. Learn more.

What is your strongest base of buyers (demographically and geographically)? How can I best target them?

Shutterstock serves millions of customers from 150+ countries. We have found that the more local content that customers can find the more they buy, so we strongly encourage our contributors to look for things that make the people and places they live in come to life. Certainly anything with people in it tends to sell very well across the world. Authentic imagery is also in high demand at the moment. People doing everyday things, in parks, at cafes, heading to work or out at play. But don’t forget to get a valid model release.

I’d like to get started with Shutterstock today, where should I begin?

Signing up for a Contributor account is easy. Head to ‘Become a contributor’ and get started. Then download our free Contributor Success Guide and our Market Success Guide Here.

How can I receive payments from Shutterstock?

Shutterstock makes payments available via Payoneer, PayPal, Skrill and check.


Going Forward

How do you see the future of this industry? Where are the big opportunities?

With more and more channels of distribution available for marketers, there continues to be a huge demand for images and video to fill these channels. Images are proven to help sales wherever you are marketing, in email, on social images and video can make the difference between a sale or not. We live in such a visual world today where everyone is a photographer, that images have become a way to communicate effectively, globally.

Where do you think Shutterstock will be in 5 years?

We will continue growing our current business, but with a stronger focus on workflow tools for our customers. They should be able to do what they need to do from our site and we are building things like Editor and new features in our Collections in order to help them get their jobs done better and faster.  We continue to invest in search technology will improve dramatically with machine learning & artificial intelligence, making our content more discoverable.

To learn more about how you can become a contributor for Shutterstock, click here.

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