Huge changes in digital content and distribution models have drastically changed the business outlook for many publishers. Indeed, the amount of change that continues affect publishers make it easy to overlook another group whose business is also affected by shifts in the industry: authors. Taking a moment to consider the author’s point of view can be a pretty eye-opening exercise, and it can help you evaluate what might be potential weaknesses in your business.
For the writer trying to make a living from her work, it is an extremely complicated time, and aside from having existing name recognition, there are no sure bets. Margins have been hacked out in every step of the publishing pipeline. And in addition to razor-thin margins and squeezed royalty rates (from everyone’s perspective), you – the publisher – are far from the only game in town. Gone are the days of an author choosing between you and a competing publisher. Maybe a traditional publisher isn’t even in the running.
In short, authors are faced with more choices than ever, and they have to be more critical than ever about who they do business with. Publishers are far from obsolete, but publishers aren’t the sole gatekeepers for books any longer. One result is that publishers have to court authors, and be a more welcoming partner to them than ever before.
Being friendly and receptive is always a great way to do business, but you might find that your potential authors – your business partners and customers – are more concerned with the bottom line. They are going to want to know exactly how much you plan to pay in royalties, and exactly how you plan to calculate those amounts.
Unfortunately, we can’t help you with royalty rate negotiations – but you’re probably an expert at that already. One way we can help you though, is by making your business the most attractive and easy to deal with from an author’s standpoint. There is no better way to give a an author exactly what they want, in terms of transparency of contracts and royalty calculations, than using Royalty Tracker. You can create easy-to-read reports that show authors exactly what has sold, what royalty rate it falls under, and then how the overall royalty payments are tallied. And none of this requires extra customization or tweaking on your part – it’s all built into the out-of-the-box features of Royalty Tracker.
Most of the attention we get is for the solutions we provide for rights and royalty management, and for our tools for royalty accounting. These are extremely powerful tools for the internal operations of any publisher, from small boutique firms to large global firms. However, the benefits they provide in making those that use them into better business partners – and more successful business partners – are often overlooked. Accountants love the transparency and powerful data management tools we provide. Executives love the ease with which they can access, slice, and present data, on a huge range of metrics. If you want to do more business, and work with the best authors who can sell the most books for you, become their best publishing option with Royalty Tracker.