We all know what every woman looks like when eating a salad, right?

The image below is just one example of the hilariously bad stock photos we all love to hate – and it has now become immortalised as part of Adobe’s new creative marketing campaign.

(Try to ignore the sadness in her eyes)

Teaming up with Swedish agency, Abby Priest, the software giants have just released their own line of Adobe Apparel – a range of t-shirts and sweaters adorned with some of the cheesiest stock photos of all time.

It’s an inspired bit of creative. Here’s three reasons why it works.

Taps into consumer awareness

From ‘international business team working around a desk’ to ‘man at desk frustrated with technology’ – stock photos have become clichés in their own right. 

There are endless Reddit threads and Tumblr’s dedicated to the most ridiculous examples

Within the digital and creative industries in particular – i.e. Adobe’s target audience – stock photos have become a laughing stock. 

By recognising this fact (and making fun of it) Adobe shows that self-deprecation is often the best form of defence. 

Uses unconventional promotion

While many people might simply chuckle at the sight of a stock photo on a t-shirt – we’ve no doubt there’ll be many who would actually love to wear them.

Sadly, Adobe isn’t actually selling any of its ‘limited edition’ range, at least for the time being.

The stunt is simply designed to promote the new Adobe Stock collection.

While a slick video or print ad might have also been an effective method, the decision to do something entirely unexpected was a bold move.

With its hipster models and tongue-in-cheek style, it's far more likely to resonate with the target audience.

Marks a new era

Highlighting the new and improved features of Adobe Stock – the campaign is effective in delivering the message that cheesy photos are a thing of the past.

Finding good images used to take endless amounts of searching on various websites, making the entire process long and laboured, and incredibly frustrating.

The new features certainly sound far more appealing. Integrated into the Creative Cloud app, it offers subscribers millions of high-res images, videos and creatives.

Abby Priest commented on the motivation behind the project:

We wanted to pay tribute to what has been before, and then take one last glimpse backwards, before we leave it all behind and move into the new age.

Let's be honest - stock photos are never going to be super cool.

But by using both humour and clever design, Adobe has managed to create a rather fun and refreshing campaign. 

Nikki Gilliland

Published 19 September, 2016 by Nikki Gilliland @ Econsultancy

Nikki is a Writer at Econsultancy. You can follow her on Twitter or connect via LinkedIn.

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