The Medical File, Inc., a stock photo agency that specializes in medical imagery, announced today that it’s launching a new royalty free collection as well as an assignment division. These new services are being offered in addition to their existing rights managed collection.
This news helps illustrate the trend of merging assignment and stock sales. The Medical File presumably has strong relationships with buyers of medical image, and they can be easily found by those who only occasionally need such imagery. It makes sense for them to be able to offer their customers whatever medical-related images they need, whether they already exist as stock or if they need to be created. Their most valuable asset is the company’s brand recognition and especially the relationship with their customers. They want to be able to fill the client’s needs, whatever that might be.
This is a trend that is likely to continue, and not just for specialty subjects such as medical imagery. Increasingly, stock agencies will offer assignment services and reps will license stock. With the over-abundance of imagery on the market today, what is most valuable is the sales channel. The more you can meet your client’s varied needs the greater your chances to succeed.
As an added benefit, stock is perceived as being more valuable when compared to hiring a photographer for an assignment. With competition from microstock and royalty free images, rights managed licensing will only continue to exist if it’s views as an alternative to assignment work.
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