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Need Advice on an Unsolicited Offer to Purchase Images

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  • Need Advice on an Unsolicited Offer to Purchase Images

    Recently I received this offer via email / Flickr.:

    "My name is Mike Katz and I would like to know if you would like to sell the rights to one or two of your Cleveland images, if chosen, to use in a print for a hospitality project?"

    Although I aspire to produce commercially viable images, this is the first I have had an offer of this nature. I do not even know where to start. The gentleman did leave his phone number & email address.

    My questions are :
    1. Is there any reason I should be suspicious of this offer or should I pursue it.
    2. I have no idea where to start with a negotiation. Should I let him make an offer and then take it or leave it or should I have a price list on hand (in which case I am clueless where to start with that as well).

    I'm sure this is not a unique situation for many of you, but for me it is virgin territory. Any advice I can get from you folks would be much appreciated. Thanks.

  • #2
    I'm guessing yes, you should probably be suspicious.

    I received a similar FlickrMail, I notice when they ask about the photo, they never gave you a link to the particular image, right? Red Flag, because they asked a very broad question about my images, as well.

    You'd think if they were interested in something enough for it to really catch their eye and send you a FlickrMail about it, they would have the exact photo that knocked their socks off in mind, no?
    www.katiagphoto.com/
    Katia G Photo on Facebook

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    • #3
      I wouldnt be so suspicious: They're feeling things out, and said they were looking at "one or two" images in particular. Get more info about which images and their project and see what happens
      I am responsible for what I say; not what you understand.
      adammontpetit.com
      Gear List
      500PX | Graphic Design

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      • #4
        I dunno, I replied to the person who sent me the FlickrMail a couple of times and they never responded back at all. So I'm not really sure what it's all about?
        www.katiagphoto.com/
        Katia G Photo on Facebook

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        • #5
          You can always sell usage rights for any image. What it's worth is very variable.
          Steve
          the Photographic Academy.com
          SharpShooter Industries
          My 500px, My Flickr, My Blog

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          • #6
            Nothing to lose here. Figure out a market value for what they want, based upon the usage they intend. Quote them that price. If they agree, great, you made a sale. If they don't then you haven't lost anything. But, don't give them the images until you get paid. And you might want to think about a contract that lays out exactly what they are, and aren't, allowed to do with the pictures.
            Kevin
            Canon EOS 60D, Canon EOS T3i, Canon A-1, Canon AE-1 Program, Various lenses
            http://500px.com/VeritasImageryNW/photos
            http://veritasimagerynw.smugmug.com/

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            • #7
              Either way it needs to be a written contract. Either you sell unlimited use rights(bad business) or you sell limited use rights with a "terms of use" clause.
              Steve
              the Photographic Academy.com
              SharpShooter Industries
              My 500px, My Flickr, My Blog

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              • #8
                Certainly no reason to be suspicious just because it is "unsolicited". After all if you are displaying the images to the public and they are good enough for someone to want to use them then that surely is a good thing. Those of us who do sell work would be pretty well stuffed if we had to rely purely on "solicited" work.

                As to how to start negotiations. Respond back with "Thanks for your query, please advise what specific shots you are looking at and for what usage you require these images.

                You can go into more detail if you want but ultimately the final price depends on the final usage.They purchase usage rights and you need to ensure that when/if you do a deal that these are detailed in writing.
                If there are no stupid questions, then what kind of questions do stupid people ask? Do they get smart just in time to ask questions?

                Personal work

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