This research report on the stock images and videos market covers market sizing and forecast, market share, industry trends, growth drivers, and vendor analysis. The market study includes insights on segmentation by products (still images and videos), license(rights-managed (RM) and royalty-free (RF)), application(commercial and editorial), source (macrostock and microstock), end-user (marketers, films and TV producers, media & publishing companies, and business and individual creators),and geography (APAC, Europe, Latin America, MEA, and North America).
Artificial Intelligence acts as a smart system for stock agencies to monitor, segregate, review images and recognize the content’s value
As traditional advertising revenues that mandate the use of images are phasing out, digital storytelling tools such as videos, photography, drones, and interactive graphics are creating engaging communication. The magnetism toward emotive, experiential, and immersive content that offers consumers new experiences is the main driver for this new form of communication. Hence, advertisers can make their marketing more nuanced and open to interpretation, humanizing what a brand/product stands for.
The era of instant gratification has compelled brands and businesses to use bite-sized and short-form content. Made-for-social programming and video streaming have become popular due to the thrill of novelty they offer. Social networks are recording passive behavior among consumers wherein they are catching up on the news, looking for entertainment during in-between moments, and watching videos to kill time. Social networks are also pushing brands to craft social video content. To keep audiences hooked and capitalize on such moments by offering new advertising inventory. This is opening new avenues for marketers to advertise. Therefore, for this form of content, stock visuals account for a big part. Moreover, as these platforms are rolling out tons of video content, graphics, and images, they are expected to grow at a rapid pace.
Artificial Intelligence(AI) acts as a smart system for stock agencies to effectively monitor and accurately segregate, review images, recognize the content’s value, and offer the right content to align with the consumer’s requirement. AI tools can generate tags based on image recognition, allowing users to efficiently source keywords that validate the image. It offers intelligent keywording features that improve accuracy and save time. This helps increase satisfaction and proves beneficial to the growth of the stock images and videos market. The global stock images and videos market is expected to grow at a CAGR of over 5% during the period 2018-2024.
This research report includes detailed market segmentation by product, application, license, source, end-user, and geography.
Stock Images and Videos Market: Products
The declining price per image is forcing stock agencies to adopt new business models and advanced technologies
With the growth of online purchases, strong visuals are becoming a prerequisite for the e-commerce industry. Nearly 80% of marketers are under pressure to demonstrate the effectiveness of visual content through ROIs. Thus, several e-commerce players depend on white background studio shots images, thereby increasing the requirement of adding context without heavy expenditure. Another instance, which has increased volume growth of stock images is the frequent use of a data-driven approach to better streamline efficiency. This has led to the use of images from a wider database. However, the declining price per image is forcing agencies to adopt new business models and advanced technologies.
Brands are increasingly investing in short films or extended videos. They also seek videos for extra production value in a bid to captivate fickle online viewers. This has increased the demand for snackable content. The hybrid photography format is merging into stock video and is expected to become hugely popular during the forecast period. Businesses are investing in this market due to the growing demand for humanized, emotion-rich, substantial video content, making it easy for them to engage their customers on social media platforms. However, the market is not all hunky-dory. The video industry is still experiencing a boom owing to the difficulty in production. Consumer patience is another factor due to which videos are not the primary sources of communication.
Stock Images and Videos Market: License
RF license models have become widely popular due to the growth of the microstock industry
While stock content agencies offer content to their consumers, licensing these images to protect the ownership rights becomes imperative. The introduction of Royalty-Free (RF) license allows users to use images indefinitely by paying a flat fee. Driven by the growth of the microstock industry, RF license models have become widely popular. With a lot of SMEs finding this model more appealing and economical and with the arrival of a host of new businesses on the scene, the demand has blown up.
While it seems like the days of Rights Managed(RM) images are over, stable economic growth will drive spends on quality imagery, intensified by the need to prevent brand dilution. Major companies and brands that usually conduct business and marketing on a global scale are the go-to with these licenses. However, the option of photographers, often at a similar if not lower cost, has reduced the market momentum. As RM photos are not sold frequently, they have a higher value than RF images, where a larger volume of photos is sold at lower prices. The RM stock images and videos market has, therefore, been a lot more difficult to access owing to its lengthy and complicated application processes.
Stock Images and Videos Market: Application
The push toward maintaining editorial video libraries is high due to automated processes, which make producing content easy
Commercial content is used when monetizing, commercializing, advertising, promoting, and selling advertise businesses, products, or services. The commercial stock images market is witnessing disruptions. However, a few industry stakeholders realize how rapid the transformation needs to be to accommodate the change. Digitization is changing everything and driving conversations on mediums and platforms and creating an entirely new category for imagery.
The editorial market is driven by present-day societies that are more openly diverse than ever. A growing sentiment of irrelevancy has led to a gap in real representations of happenings and general content. A case in point that indicates the demand for such content is the popularity of relatable YouTube and Instagram videos produced across a range of sectors such as lifestyle, entertainment, and sports, etc. and reality shows. This has essentially led to a decline in content, such as celebrity-based TV shows and magazines. The editorial section has tremendous potential as off-site news consumption has grown rapidly. At present, online news is largely driven by platforms, technology, and publishers, instead of consumer demand. The push toward maintaining editorial video libraries is high due to automated processes, which make producing content easy. However, there is still a considerable gap between demand and supply because the paycheck for editorial work is generally smaller than commercial work.
Stock Images and Videos Market: Source
Microstock is more prevalent among value-conscious and developing umbrella, such as India
Brands seek to maintain exclusivity in a market where social influence is widespread. With the emergence of a greater number of aspirational brands, macrostock seems more appealing than ever. However, macrostock agencies have firmly grounded their revenues, accounting for the largest share in the stock images and videos market, their growth has slowed comparatively. An important reason for this is stringent competition from individual assignments. As the world is drifting toward personalized content and brands finding it hard to establish their USPs, they are increasingly auditing their content and aiming to serve tailored images to their customers. Another challenge is the sharp decline in the usage fee. Vendors are looking for ways to stop users moving elsewhere by bringing creators easy access to stock through customer-facing dashboards.
While Microstock came about with a bang reacting to industry demands. The rise of the World Wide Web brought with it a rush of new highly digital businesses that needed strong online presence and marketing collateral for their offline efforts. Microstock is more popular among value-conscious countries, which mostly fall under the developing umbrella, such as India. Given the rapid growth in its initial years, the underestimated microstock market received a seal of trust from macrostock agencies that began creating or acquiring microstock divisions to even out their range of customers. The trend of broadening the microstock repertoire is also gaining pace.
Stock Images and Videos Market: End-user
With companies developing wearable technology, marketers are beginning to realize that humanizing their brands with mood-boosting images is one of the best ways to go to break the clutter
An effective marketing campaign isn’t merely hinged on a winning piece but the entire universe, including the platforms, the formats, and more. Neuromarketing is gaining prominence, specifically among digital marketers that have traditionally used views, scroll depth, leads, subscriptions, and social shares to measure campaign performance. However, digital marketers are now focusing on emotional resonance. With companies developing wearable technology that can get the pulse of physiological and neurochemical responses while consuming marketing content, marketers are beginning to realize that humanizing their brands with mood-boosting images is one of the best ways to go to break the clutter.
With smartphone consumption rising, the second screen concept is booming. This is due to frequent participation in online conversations and scrolling through social feeds while watching live events or TV programs. Currently, a high share of television content is accessed via the internet. This allows for a higher addressable TV, where marketers can streamline and divide audiences based on their characteristics such as behavior, using technology. This is a major divergence from the way TV audiences are targeted.
Furthermore, programmatic TV is also on the rise. The demand for interactive and immersive experiences is growing, with 42% of consumers wanting to watch movies in the 360-degree format and 29% wanting the same experience for television shows. The use of stock videos cinematographers to pre-visualize scenes from scripted content is a trend that is surfacing in the stock images and videos market.
The media landscape is changing, and so is the outlook toward revenue streams among media and publishing companies. As consumers move away from the paid TV and consuming ads, large media companies are witnessing declining revenues. Commercial media companies are also showing interest in diversifying their revenue streams, via various reader payment options such as digital subscription, membership, micropayments, events, and more. Publishers are revisiting their content strategies as they try to reduce spends and still find ways to monetize. Moreover, publishers are moving away from lifestyle and short-form video productions as they are heavy on the pocket.
Stock Images and Videos Market: Geography
About 45 of the world’s 100 largest advertisers have a strong presence in North America, which accounts for more than $130 billion of advertising spends
About 45 of the world’s 100 largest advertisers have a strong presence in North America, which accounts for more than $130 billion of advertising spends. This makes the region among the most lucrative markets. Further, cyclic events such as the Olympics and US presidential elections have affected the advertising space in North America. Retail, automotive, telecom, financial services, and restaurants are the leading advertising spends, dictating the demand for relevant stock visual content. The region is also witnessing high investments in other revenue streams to live on, moving into spaces such as events and videos. These trends are witnessing an increased focus on developing better user experiences to prevent the erosion of viewership through the creation of multimedia content. The dependency on visual and interactive storytelling is also high, creating opportunities for dynamic data visualizations, videos, and more. Improved corporate profits and the growth of individual content creators will create a massive playground for stock images from VR to videos in the US. The increasing popularity of paid search, social, and e-mail campaigns is creating high demand for visual components.
The growth of the European stock images market has picked up and stimulated by attractive financing conditions and growing corporate profitability. Countries across Europe have shown mixed performances, but several major economies are on their way to stabilize this growth. The advertising segment in Europe is, thus, strengthening with growing investments in the digital medium. The UK’s spending on the online advertising segment is maximum, with its expenditure accounting for double of Germany and triple of France. The online advertising spending of the country from mobile and video is expected to increase with growth in population and 50% of online advertising revenue coming from mobiles.
APAC is characterized by strong advertising spends due to a highly active economy. A decade ago, the region occupied the top spot, winning a host of international advertising awards. The largest advertising agencies have found their way and settled in APAC for decades. Currently, the rapidly changing media landscape is fueling the advertisement market in the region. Digital marketing, specifically mobile, is on the rise due to the huge number of new internet users that are connecting to the web through their smartphones for the first time. Smartphones have given rise to 500 million new internet users, led by China and India. Their reliance on a low value, high volume stock images offered through attractive subscription packages is higher than other developed markets.
Middle-East and Africa is witnessing spotty growth. With the increasing penetration of the internet and shift in focus on a more knowledge-based society, the region is investing heavily in digital marketing using innovative tools such as theming to promote their services and products. Marketers are also shifting from one-size-fits-all and are depending on digital platforms to better target advertising. The demand for content is thus expected to be diverse and depend on image packages. With countries such as Oman hitting nearly 100% smartphone penetration, digital applications will also account for low resolution, high-quality still, and moving images. The Gulf accounts for 60% ad spends in the region, with Saudi Arabia heading as the largest advertising market followed by the UAE.
Latin America is not as advanced in the digital segment as other global economies. However, it is a developing digital economy with the rise in the number of consumers accessing the internet through smartphones, making it the second-fastest-growing global region after Sub-Saharan Africa. Traditional media, specifically TV, accounts for the highest ad spending in the region, higher than the rest of the world, where ad spends hover around 55%. Many Latin American companies are aiming to cater to the region’s diversity, putting a concentrated effort in the content they pick. The region is expected to account for 10% out of every $10 in the global economy and is thus a lucrative region for marketing.
Furthermore, visual content is a priority among marketers in the region, as nearly 22% marketers state that visual content is increasingly becoming their go-to, higher than North America where only 14% are looking to incorporate them in their projects as a priority. The region’s social media adoption has also surpassed the US, indicating heightened demand for imagery and video. Digital ad spending is expected to grow at a rate of 13%+, signifying the potential for ads that will carry images and videos.
Key Countries Profiled in Stock Images and Videos Market
Key Vendor Analysis
The global stock images and videos market is highly consolidated. Since Getty Images and Corbis imposed a consumer-facing business model (i.e., low price, high volume), the industry has not changed much. While there are several specialist agencies and mom- and- pop shops, the latter’s growth seems hazy. Specialist agencies, however, can survive provided as they keep up with technology and demand developments. Major agencies, such as Getty Images, often represent smaller ones, benefitting from their exclusive content and giving them an opening. There are also several platforms that have also come up to cater to amateurs.
Getty Images, Visual China Group, Shutterstock, and Adobe Stock are the four major vendors that dominate the stock images and videos market. Several small and large vendors are altering the stock photography business by new approaches and business models. With a lot of vendors trying to cut costs due to shrinking revenues, offering any kind of service apart from the basic is limiting their growth. Several larger players have witnessed a decline in revenues over the last couple of years due to consolidation that devalued the stock images and videos market.
Prominent Vendors in Stock Images and Videos Market
Other Prominent Vendors in Stock Images and Videos Market include– 123RF, Alamy, AP Images, Art-list, Can Stock Photo, Coinaphoto, Death to Stock, Depositphotos, Dissolve, Dreamstime, Envato, Fotosearch, ImagesBazaar, Masterfile, Motion Array, NHK Video Bank, Pexels, Photofolio, Pixta, Pond5, Reuters Pictures, Stocksy, Storyblocks, SuperStock, and Videvo
Key Market Insights
The analysis of the stock images and videos market provides market sizing and growth opportunities for the forecast period 2019–2024.
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