One of the worst mistakes you can make is to use Stock Images for your business promotions and advertising. Yes, they're often free, and always much cheaper than having something custom-made, but it just makes your company, product, or service, look terrible.
And by Stock Images, I mean some kind of generic picture of people in a meeting shaking hands, or the skyline of some unidentified city. It could even be a drawing found on some "clip art" site, of which there are thousands, and they're mostly free. Don't use them, you'll do more damage to your reputation than just about anything else you could do, essentially showing everyone that you're a fake, your company is a fake, your service is a fake, your product is a fake.
You're not a fake, so resist the urge to look like one. No one really believes that the Stock Photo of the person with the Hollywood smile and perfect hair is the person that they're going to see when they visit your business. And that Stock Photo of a sunset just shows that your business is probably a fly-by-night, running out of the back of your brother-in-law's van. At least that's what most people will think.
So step away from the Stock Images, and don't look back. If you're in business, you need to be real. If you have a building, find a photographer who can take a picture of it. Do some candid shots of your staff with your camera phone. Hire someone to do it so that you staff photos don't end up looking like "last seen" photos (if you know what I mean). If nothing else, hire me to do some cartoons that are clearly not Stock Images. That's what I do.
Yes, getting custom photography or illustration will cost a lot more than Stock Images. But Stock Images are not only free, and worthless, their cost is much worse.
To see my custom cartoon illustrations, go to> BradHallArt.com