I was interested to see the photos from last Sunday’s race, if nothing else so I could see what my form looked like given I am trying to transition to forefoot style. They posted pretty quickly 61 pages of 48 prints per page, that’s 2928 prints, now how may of me are there do you think? Well having looked through them all, yes there was no cataloging by bib number, I can tell you, a grand total of two and a half, the half is of half of me and blurred!
The first one is pretty good, I am moving so fast I am leaning into the corner, but he’s nipped my feet, the second shows very little heel strike and a whole lotta palm trees, the third well it’s a bit of a miss! Now having looked at the photos there are some good ones, some really good ones!
Now by my memory there were 5 maybe 6 photographers on the course…not a very good ratio me thinks, one photographer gets two and basically the others miss! Oh well!
Now the next thing on the fail-list, the cost. They start at $12 for a teeny tiny 5 x 7 print…a digital download, which lets be honest is what we want; Facebook, Blog, Twitter and the like a whopping $49.99 can you say daylight robbery!
Let’s look at the business case here, as best I can tell each photographer is independent, that is they contract to the company that sets up the photography of the race, somehow they divide up the course and select their location, as you can see there were some pretty good vantage points. From there they take the photos…lots and lots of photos, zero editing and in this case zero sorting (IMHO #fail) and then they get posted to a website from which you can order prints or download.
Let’s assume that a photographer takes 500 photos, of which 20% are duplicates that leaves 400. Of that 400 how many runners buy a digital download, remember they are basically $50 each, maybe 10%, that’s 40 photos, which is $2000 not bad for a day’s work. but let’s look at it a different way, what if they were $12 each how many would be sold then?
Well ask yourself how many would you buy, two maybe three and that maybe opens up 50 of the duplicates to choose from. So now we have a pool of 450 photos of which 20%, (because they’re cheaper more people by them) buys two photos, that’s 180 photos at $12, or $2160.
Of course this is all based on assumptions…but it makes you think, maybe pile them high and sell them cheap does work?