How I Hack The Stock Photo Game

Today I’m introducing you to stock photos as well as my favorite resources for finding the GOOD ones (like these ⤴)

What is a stock photo?

A stock photo is a professional photograph of common places, landmarks, nature, events, or people that is readily available for use. These photos provide a convenient and (mostly) free solution if you are looking for high-quality pictures and don’t want to hire a photographer for a custom shoot.

When it comes to showcasing your business or enhancing your social media presence, high-quality stock photos can make all the difference in capturing attentionconveying your message effectively, and elevating your brand image.

Where can I find high quality stock photos?

As a branding expert, I understand the importance of finding the perfect visuals that resonate with your audience and reflect the essence of your brand. With so many stock photo platforms out there, it can be overwhelming to find the right one for your needs. That’s why I’m sharing my top 3 user-friendly stock photo platforms that I turn to time and time again to discover elevated stock photos:

Canva (my personal favorite!)

Canva offers not only a vast collection of stock photos but also intuitive design tools for customizing them (think background remover, brightness and filter adjustments, etc.). With its user-friendly dashboard and searchable photo library, Canva makes it easy to find pictures that complement your branding. Whether you’re designing social media posts, website banners, or marketing materials, I’m confident you can find pictures on Canva that will align with your vision.


Unsplash is a popular platform among designers, marketers, and creatives seeking high-resolution, royalty-free images. With over two million photos contributed by photographers worldwide, Unsplash offers a diverse range of subjects and styles to choose from. The platform is very user friendly and features advanced search functionality which makes it easy to find photos that align with your brand.


Pexels is another great resource for free stock photos. Between its straightforward search feature and extensive category breakdown, Pexels simplifies the process of finding the perfect images for your projects. Whether you’re looking for inspirational quotes, lifestyle shots, or business-related pictures, Pexels has you covered.

How can I use stock photos effectively?

While stock photos are convenient and versatile, it’s important to use them strategically. Here are my tips for using stock photos effectively:

  1. Align with Your Brand: Choose images that reflect the values, tone, and aesthetic of your brand to maintain consistency across your marketing materials.

  2. Personalize When Possible: Customize stock photos with overlays, text, or filters to add a personal touch and make them more relevant to your audience.

  3. Avoid Clichés: Work with images that feel authentic and genuine. You want to avoid clichés and overly staged pictures as much as possible. 

  4. Consider Composition: Pay attention to composition, framing, and focal points to ensure that your stock photos are visually appealing and effectively convey your message / content.

  5. Optimize for All Platforms: As needed, make sure to resize and optimize your stock photos to ensure they show up correctly and maintain the same quality across your channels.

Using elevated stock photos will, in turn, elevate your content and improve your visual credibility – whether it’s on your website, socials, or physical coaching assets. Take the time to explore Canva, Unsplash, and Pexels to find the visuals that best represent you and your business.

*But wait there’s more!*

I’m also sharing my simple stock photo template with you. Once you in fact FIND stock photos you love, I don’t want you to lose them! This Canva template serves as a storage space for pictures you love and want to reuse in your content.

Happy searching!

Deena Rutter

p.s. If you’re ready to take your coaching business to the next level, let’s talk! Explore the ways we can work together to elevate your brand and start attracting the coaching clients you’re looking for

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