Friday, October 9, 2009

Crestock and Word Press

Is it me or does this sound like an infomercial? Below is a new letter from Crestock about the launch of their Word Press plug in.

We're incredibly excited to let you know that we're only one week away from launching our biggest, most powerful marketing initiative to date, and this is a special invite for you to join and to receive an additional 5% commission on all credits purchases.

If you've been around at Crestock for a while, you know that we've been running some hugely popular Photoshop design contests every year around summer time. The idea has been to provide one of the most dominant demographics among potential buyers, the designers, a chance to get to know Crestock – and to actually try the products.

These contests have been shaped as viral campaigns and have, without failure, spread like wildfire in the design community; through blogs and forums, through social media and have even been featured on the Apple and MTVs websites.

Throughout the years, these contests have generated incredible exposure, millions of visitors and tens of thousands of paying customers. However, though viral and social marketing is one of the things we're exceptionally good at (we've actually won awards for them), we've realized that all these successful campaigns, by nature of a contest, had one big flaw – they all had an end date.

In our opinion, the Ultimate Campaign has the following treats:

  • No end date
  • Virtually unlimited scalability
  • Massive distribution to users
  • Massive exposure of individual portfolios
  • Massive direct and indirect sales

So what's in it for you?

The brilliance of the new WordPress plugin is that it will just keep rolling and getting more and more users as time goes by, and the whole point of the WordPress plugin is to promote each individual portfolio on a scale never seen before in the business of microstock.

I know some of you will scream bloody murder in a minute, but please stay with me on this one, because it's exceptionally important that you appreciate the enormous reach and impact of this campaign; After all, there's a reason why big names such as Yuri Arcurs, Ron Chapple (iofoto), Kirsty Pargeter, Lev Dolgachov and Andres Rodriguez (only to name a few) has already signed up for it.

This WordPress plugin will allow bloggers access to search for, and add, any Crestock image to their blog - free of charge.

There – I said it. The "F" word. Free.

But we're not going to just give away your art for free. That would be a spectacularly bad business plan doomed to fail.

For Crestock as a corporation, selling your images is what's making us the money. Incidentally this also ties in with your bottom line, so to be brutally honest, we both have at least one common interest, and that is to make you as much money as possible.

But some times you have to give some in order to get a lot in return, so please stay with me for a bit longer, and it'll all become clear:

The Freemium Business Model

The freemium business model was articulated by venture capitalist Fred Wilson (co-founder of Union Square Ventures, with investments in Web 2.0 companies such as Twitter, and FeedBurner) on 23 March 2006:

"Give your service away for free, possibly ad supported but maybe not, acquire a lot of customers very efficiently through word of mouth, referral networks, organic search marketing, etc., then offer premium priced value added services or an enhanced version of your service to your customer base."

What we'll give away are images with a maximum resolution of 400px width – perfect for blogs, but totally useless for anything else.

Here's how it works, and here's how you'll make money:

For starters, WordPress is the most popular blog platform on the planet, with over 3 million downloads of their latest release alone, and over 3.1 million active blogs on their own site.

Secondly, the Top 10 Plugins on WordPress has been downloaded a total of 4.42 million times – that's an average of 740,000 times for each plugin in the Top 6.

When a blogger use your images, the WordPress plugin will insert a clearly watermarked image as well as a caption with links embedded pointing to the corresponding image page on Crestock.

This is extremely important.

At this point, the different search engines accounts for roughly 40% of the total traffic on Crestock. It's so high because we've been very focused on what's called Search Engine Optimization (or SEO), which is the process of improving web sites so that it ranks higher in search engines for targeted keywords.

Incoming links to a web site is one of the most important ranking criteria in any search algorithm, and simply put, you can think of a link as a vote for another website, with the link text as a description of the website you're linking to.

If you link to Crestock with the link text "Crestock stock photos" , you're telling the search engines you vote for this site, and the site is about stock photos. This will make us rank better for that phrase.

The WordPress plugin solves one of our biggest challenges SEO wise: building deep links with highly relevant link text to each of your images: The deep links to each of your images will give them a great boost in the search engine rankings, and it will naturally also drive traffic directly into the page with your image on it - Where people can buy it.

So let's summarize:

  • Massive distribution to millions of bloggers
  • Plugin will actively promote paid, high resolution versions of your images
  • Images will be clearly watermarked with your name and copyright sign - ©
  • The automatically embedded image caption will contain a link to the image page:
    • Links will rank your images higher in Google
    • Links will drive click-though visitors directly to your images

But Wait – There's More!

(And it's not just rubbish being thrown at you)

Aside from the incredible boost in highly converting search engine traffic and referral traffic the links will provide you, we're also using the actual plugin interface to offer the bloggers to upgrade to a paid service. This is the Premium content.

Since we have control of the content we deliver in the plugin search interface, we'll use tracking software to monitor and calculate which offers and which approaches generates the highest possible revenue in order to exploit the potential that lies in the WordPress plugin to the fullest.

Finally, we're offering an additional 5% commission on every single credit sale you make when you join the WordPress project.