However, most members of the public simply keep their content stored on their phones, hard drives or memory cards and forget about it, remaining unaware that they could be making their images work for them - without having to do very much at all.
Local visual solution provider, Greatstock, is always on the lookout for exceptional content of all types and subject matter. Through their well-established relationships with many local and global publications, Greatstock disseminates contributors' content far and wide, negotiating fair remuneration on their behalf.
"For many agencies and publications, it is the authentic, timeous and true-to-life content that gets the clicks and sells papers," says Greatstock's News and Features Editor, Daniel Born. "This doesn't take anything away from the professionals, but it does significantly increase the scope of content available - which is great for the publications, their readers and content producers alike."
According to Born, entering the publishing market for the first time can be extremely intimidating for novices. "At Greatstock, we assist members of the public evaluate their content and identify the pieces that show potential for syndication. We then make sure it is marketed to the right publishers," he adds.
When it comes to looking for new content, Greatstock has a particular focus on unusual animal interactions and moments which can often generate global interest, with the right marketing."
Born says, "People often don't realise when they have achieved something remarkable through the lens. So it's always great to share in their excitement when we get their images published in major publications around the world."
Ian Matheson is one such photographer who supplied Greastock with some thrilling content of a buffalo bull flipping a lion in the air in an attempt to rescue a young buffalo in the Kruger National Park.
"The service from Greastock has been very good, from the initial meeting right through to the listing process. The video I took has been aired all over the world and received over 40 million hits on YouTube. The revenue was obviously also a big bonus," says Matheson.
Don't lose out
According to Born, publishing images or footage directly to social networks can often result in it being copied and used without the creator being fairly remunerated.
"I have seen outstanding images go viral through social media, and in some cases the photographers could have generated a decent royalty for their images. Being unfamiliar with the complexities of image licensing, they often end up losing out on their dues," explains Born, adding that choosing the right licensing partner before posting to social media helps to ensure your content starts working for you.
"We evaluate our content very carefully and choose the right global partners to best serve that particular content. From the YouTube channel we select to showcase particular material, right through to the agencies we appoint to pitch the content in a particular territory - every aspect is considered," concludes Born.
To find out if your content has the potential to generate revenue, simply send your photos and videos to az.oc.kcotstaerg@serutcip and the Greatstock content specialists will guide you through the process - from evaluation to syndication.
For more information, or to view Greatstock's collection of editorial, creative and feature images and motion imagery, visit www.greatstock.co.za.