The cheapest method of sourcing images for email marketing campaigns is to take them yourself or have your staff do so, for suitable reward one hopes. You’ll eventually have quite a few to choose from, although, of course, they’ll lack that bit of professionalism you want to encourage.
If you’ve got the budget, you might consider stock images. You’ll have a vast range to select from; thousands being the norm. This can be a problem in itself. How can you choose from so many? Don’t worry though. The ability to skim through dozens of images in a few seconds soon develops. It has to, I suppose.
The biggest block on stock images is price. You will have a strict budget for an email marketing campaign and some of the charges on the more professional sites are eye-watering. Photographers have to make a living, much as this might irritate, and expertise comes at a cost.
There is a compromise though. The images on the up-market sites are stunning. The problem with them is not so much that they grab the attention but they retain it. You don’t want a work of art; you’re after something that provides an identical function to your text. In other words, the image needs to ensure that the reader clicks through. It’s not there to inspire or entertain.
The purpose of text and images is to direct. Anything that deflects from this should be eliminated. You know those on your email marketing lists and should be able to work out what will grab their attention without them becoming fascinated by it. You don’t need brilliant photographers for this.
The cheaper images are often more generic. They should be of high digital quality without any of the self-indulgence of the professional. Find one that is simple, directs the readers’ attention to the Click Here button, and is instantly forgettable.
We all like beautiful pictures, but that’s not what email marketing is about. We want something that grabs the attention for a second or two, and then points the reader to where we want them to go. It’s a bonus that they can be cheaper as well.