Archives for April 2009

Publishing Events in May

Digital Book 2009 in NYC from May 11 through May 12th

This conference focuses on the eBook business, successful business models and connecting with the consumer. The conference is preceded by two workshops on May 11 that cover 1) eBook production, workflow and meta data and 2) sales, marketing and business development.

The cost for attending the conference and workshops is $299.

Visit the IDPF website for more information.

Royalty software vendors from Easy Royalties, Klopotek, Metacomet and Publishing Technology will be attending this conference.

Publishing University 2009 in NYC from May 26th through May 28th.

  • Is the largest and most respected educational event for independent book publishers.
  • Is attended by more than 400 publishers from around the world.
  • Offers more than 32 class offerings in eight tracks.
  • Has Brand New classes for almost half of the offerings in 2009.
  • Offers 14 advanced classes for returning attendees.
  • Teaches you to work the numbers before making decisions; to analyze P&L and ROI; to plan, budget and help you create a fiscally-sound company.
  • Gives you profitable insights and ideas you can put to use immediately.
  • Is an economical way to train and reward new staff members of your company.
  • Helps you turn dreams and passions into reality and put some hard-earned money back into your pocket.

Visit the Independent Book Publishers website for more information.

Book Expo American 2009 in NYC from May 29th through May 30th

Staff from Easy Royalties will be walking the show floor at Book Expo America. If you would like to schedule a meeting with us during the show send an email to edwin@kensai.net.

 

 


 

Royalty Software Leaders

The leading royalty and rights software solutions for book publishers include Klopotek, Publishing Technology, Bradbury Phillips, Elan Book, Royalty Tracker by MetaComet and Easy Royalties.

Each of these vendors has a large client base of publishers and actively promote their software to book publishers as a stand-alone rights and royalty software solution that can import sales information from your existing system(s).

Klopotek offers powerful standardized rights and royalty software functionality along with an optional module that gives author and agents online access to their royalty statements. What sets Klopotek apart from the competition is its breath of large clients and the close integration with their production management modules. Klopotek is for companies with sales of $25M+.

On Klopotek’s heals is Publishing Technology’s new .NET based rights and royalties software.  Publishing technology designed their software in a manner that allows their clients to easily customized it. More importantly, the Publishing Technology solution incorporates power work process controls. This royalty software is targeted at companies with sales of $10M+.

Elan Rights and Royalties is a powerful and easy to use hosted royalty software solution that runs on a MS SQL platform.  Priced at $900/month for a hosted solution or $25,000 for a stand-alone solution (according to an article in Book Business).

Bradbury Phillips offers publishers a choice of hosted or stand-alone rights and royalty software applications. They are a market leader and their software is used by book publishers and literary agents.

MetaComet’s RoyaltyTracker software is a powerful and easy to use application that can manage 100,000+ roylaty contracts. In the past its been used by only the largest publishers; however, they recently released a hosted version that  small and mid-sized publishers can afford.

Easy Royalties is a relatively new royalty software solution. Its comparatively low price and ease of use targets small publishers. An optional rights management module is available.

Which software is best for your firm? Each of the solutions listed above has a solid customer base and offers unique strengths. You need to pick the solution that best meets the current and future needs of your company.

In the case of Easy Royalties, we recommend this software to publishers  looking for a  powerful, easy to use and low cost royalty solution. This solution lacks some of the bells of whistles of it competitors; however, it also offers its own unique advantages.

Example; MSGL’s Elan Rights and Royalties software allows the user to email royalty statements to authors. Publishing Technology’s royalty software solution allows the user to customized the screen and field names. Klopotek’s software allows authors and agents to access sales and royalty reports on-line. 

Easy Royalties does not offer these features. What it does offer is a low price; about $500 to $10,000 USD, with no required maintenance contract. Technical support is free.

Songwriter Royalty Rates

The Federal Copyright Board froze for five years the royalty rate that songwwriters receive on sales of CD’s and digital downloads at 9.1 cents per song.

For ringtones (aka mastertones) the FCB set a royalty rate of 24 cents per song.

The songwriter royalty rate for the interactive streaming of songs and limited downloading offered by subscription services such as Rhapsody was set at 10.5% of all revenue less composition performance royalties.

Easy Royalties software can handle each of these royalty rates in one contract. How? Create a seperate edition of the title for each format. Each title can be linked to an unlimited number of editions. Then create a royalty rule for each format; CD, digital, ringtones and subscription.

Speed Up Easy Royalties

Here’s how to speed up the performance of your Easy Royalties software.

First, make sure that your PC has at least 1GB of RAM, preferably more. If you have over 500,000 sales records you will need at least 2GB of RAM. Adding more RAM is usually the most effective change you can take to improve the speed of any royalty software that you use.

Second, when generating royalty statements – a data intensive process – close all other windows that are open on your PC. This will maximize the amount of RAM that Easy Royalties can use.

Third, defragment your hard drive monthly. Use the built in windows defragger or a third party tool such as PerfectDisk or Diskeeper.

Royalty software such as Easy Royalties generates author statements faster when they run on a PC that is optimized for large databases.  This requires more RAM, a fast processor, a fast hard drive and a defragmented hard drive. 

One client ran about 200 royalty statements in 8 minutes on an old PC. On a newer PC the same process took about 1 minute. Another client running the multi-user version of Easy Royalties found that it took about 10 minutes to generate royalty statements for 3,000 products on a new PC and 30 minutes on an older PC.

Simon & Schuster eBook Royalty Rates

Simon & Schuster announced that “all Simon & Schuster contracts worldwide will offer a royalty of 25% of net receipts for all sales of all electronic editions including eBooks and audio book downloads.”

This is the same digital editions royalty rate that Random House includes in its standard contracts.

Easy Royalties, our affordable and easy to use royalty software, allows publishers to create a royalty rate based on the format of the book. You can create a contract with royalty rules that pay 25% of net receipts on sales of digital editions and 15% of list price on printed editions.

QuickBooks Royalties Setup

Quickbooks can  work with the Easy Royalties software.  You can export authors, products and sales from Quickbooks and import this information into Easy Royalties. This post tells you how to setup your  vendor (author) and item (product) files to work with the Easy Royalties.

First, you need to define a vendor type called “Author”, and assign this vendor type to all author and agent vendors. This will allow you to export only your author vendors.

Second, populate your item list with the ISBN and title code of each product that you sell.  The ISBN should go into the item number field and the title code populates the manufacturer part number (MPN) field.  Though each book must have a unique ISBN, the various editions of a book; paper, hardcover, eBook, can share the same title code.

Example;

  • How to Cook, paper, ISBN 9781000000008, Title Code: HTC
  • How to Cook, hardcover, ISBN 978222222333X, Title Code: HTC
  • Martian Cooking, paper, ISBN, 9783444444400, Title Code: MC
  • Martian Cooking, eBook, ISBN, 978450000099, Title Code: MC

Third, in the item list define new fields to store the book’s format (paper, cloth, eBook, etc.) and publication date.

After your lists are updated with the correct vendor type, ISBN, title code, format and publication date you are ready to export author and product information from Quickbooks so that it can be imported into Easy Royalties software.

MS Access Error Solution

Error 01. After installing the program I get an error message related to MS Access 2003 when I try to run it.

Some background on EasyRoyalties & Access:

– The installation kit for EasyRoyalties includes 2 products: 

1. Microsoft Office Access 2003 Runtime
2. EasyRoyalties

– After installing EasyRoyalties, if you go to Control Panel -> Add or Remove Programs (or Control Panel -> Programs & Features if you’re on Vista), you should find both the products listed above.

– If the EasyRoyalties installation kit “thinks” that Microsoft Office Access 2003 Runtime is already installed, it won’t install it again – it will skip that step. This is something that could have conceivable happened here.

– You can “force” the installation of MS Office Access 2003 Runtime by downloading the installation product for just that product – from here:

http://www.thatsrights.com/download/tc1039/utilities.htm 

– We have seen the following happen on a couple of occasions: it appears that Access 2003 Runtime is missing; you try to install it (from the kit on the “utilities” download page above), but you get a message that it’s already installed (or a “repair/remove?” type message) – you can’t get rid of it, and you can’t re-install it. In that case, use the Microsoft MSI Uninstall Utility (also available on the page above) to completely remove Access 2003 Runtime, then install it again.

ISBN 10 and ISBN 13 Imports

Easy Royalties stores the ISBN 10 as an ISBN 13 number. If you import an ISBN 10 and an ISBN 13 is already in the database it will consider this to be a match and will update the existing record if “Verify ISBN” is turned on in the system options screen. This royalty software functionality faciliates the import of historical sales that use the ISBN 10 product identifier.

When importing historical sales into Easy Royalties you need to assign a sales type of “historical” to each sales record. Historical sales are used to determine a starting escalator quantity and to report life to date sales dollars and quantities for each title. Royalty earnings are not calculated for historical sales records.

Royalty Software Testing

When evaluating royalty software you need to test it with your own data. That means your author and agents, your titles, your royalty contracts, and your sales files.

Recently a publisher evaluating Easy Royalties asked us to demonstrate how it would work with their system. We exported their authors from QuickBooks and imported them into Easy Royalties. We exported their books (items) from QuickBooks and imported the file into Easy Royalties. Then we created royalty contracts for a few titles, imported their QuickBooks sales and generated royalty statements.

At the end of the process the publisher; confident that Easy Royalties could meet their needs, purchased the software.

When evaluating royalty software you need to test it with actual data. That is the only way to ensure that it will meet your needs. All royalty software solutions do not offer the same functionality. Don’t assume that they do.

If you are a publisher with lots of foreign authors you don’t want to purchase software that can’t handle foreign addresses. Likewise, you need to make sure that the royalty software you are looking at can handle your most complex contracts. If you don’t pay royalties on sales to authors or sales made at below cost you need to make sure that the royalty system can handle this in an seamless manner that does not require your royalty staff to do extra work.

Xlibris Royalty Rates

The PODpublisher Xlibris pays authors a 25% of list price royalty on direct sales and 10% of list price on sales to the retailers such as Amazon, B&N, Borders, and Book-A-Million.

Xlibris pays royalties quarterly, subject to a $25 minimum payment.

Read more at Xlibris….