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How much to charge for a glossary put together on own initiative
Thread poster: Alanguelaise

Alanguelaise  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 16:30
Member (2005)
French to English
Nov 4, 2004

Hi

I've been working via an agency for the same client over several months, and whilst working have put together a glossary completely on my own initative to improve the quality of my translations.

The agency has now gone into liquidation and the client has contacted me directly to try to recuperate the glossary, which they know I have. They are willing to pay me for it, but I have no idea how much I should charge.

It's a glossary that I've put together over approximately 10 months and has over 11,000 entries gleaned from various sources.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!


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A Hayes
Australia
Local time: 01:30
Impressive! Nov 4, 2004



[Edited at 2004-11-05 07:26]


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Alanguelaise  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 16:30
Member (2005)
French to English
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks! Nov 4, 2004

Thanks ABH, that gives me a starting point, at least!

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Rossana Triaca  Identity Verified
Uruguay
Local time: 12:30
Member (2002)
English to Spanish
At least... Nov 4, 2004

you should charge your standard rate + a percentage based on the extra time/difficulty of the research.

Let's say your rate for that pair is EUR 0,08. A base price would be 11,000 x 0,08= EUR 880. Depending on the glossary (does it include definitions? synonyms, examples? is it highly technical?) you could add a percentage reflecting this.

Another idea would be to charge per hour. If you do glossaries on a regular basis, you more or less know how long does it take you to put 10 terms together. Multiply accordingly for your target hourly rate et voila.

Another entirely different matter to consider here is whether your client is willing to pay that amount given the current situation (at least you have a solid figure to begin negotiations).

To ABH:

You are charging for what seems to be a good glossary (at least judging from the fact that it includes definitions and references!) only USD 0,01 per word, which is really, really, *really*, low. Compare it to your regular rate! You're giving away your know-how almost for nothing...


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A Hayes
Australia
Local time: 01:30
Rossana Nov 4, 2004

i have removed my original posting -



[Edited at 2004-11-17 08:04]


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A Hayes
Australia
Local time: 01:30
No worries Nov 4, 2004

Alanguelaise wrote:

Thanks ABH, that gives me a starting point, at least!


Good luck!


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Alanguelaise  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 16:30
Member (2005)
French to English
TOPIC STARTER
That's the problem! Nov 4, 2004

Another entirely different matter to consider here is whether your client is willing to pay that amount given the current situation (at least you have a solid figure to begin negotiations).



Hi Rossana
Thanks for your suggestions.
That is part of the problem - I have absolutely no idea how much the client is willing to pay. I know he really wants to get his hands on the glossary for future work with a new agency, but quite what that's worth in the current situation is a bit of a mystery...


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RobinB  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 16:30
German to English
Depends on scope of glossary Nov 4, 2004

Eight years or so ago, I was asked to provide an independent valuation for an electronic glossary that one large German corporate wanted to buy from another. The glossary entries for each language were:

- Keyword
- Grammatical information
- Source
- Context
- Example(s)
- Synonyms (if applicable)

Based on information gleaned from other corporates, and on the findings of a study (unpublished) that was going to pave the way for the terminology resources to be sold by the European Language Resources Agency (ELRA), I established a fair market price **per term pair** of ECU 6.50 that reflected the effort and resources invested in creating the glossary (it was going to be sold on a non-exclusive basis, BTW).

Good terminology is a very valuable intellectual asset.

FWIW,
Robin


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Rossana Triaca  Identity Verified
Uruguay
Local time: 12:30
Member (2002)
English to Spanish
The hardships of selling glossaries... Nov 4, 2004

Yes, I see what you mean.. and I partly agree. However, there are so many free glossaries/dictionaries out there these days that you can't charge too much if you ever want to sell one.


Well, I think the problem here is a matter of marketing or selling estrategy, not price. How many daily hits do you have on your page? (I had a hard time finding the glossary in the first place). Have you ever tried to sell a glossary directly to an agency? Have you ever advertised, even with as little as text adds in Proz?

I think the low price is actually undermining your efforts to sell it, since in fact I would never buy any glossary so cheap based on the assumption that it has a really poor quality. True, the net is flooded with free glossaries, but they are usually incomplete, unrealiable, without solid references or even definitions... hey, anybody can answer a question on ProZ and get an entry in the glossary!. If you want quality, you usually pay for it. Agencies know that, believe me...

On the other hand, let me comment on your glossary in particular (only from a selling point of view, since I know next to nothing on medicine!). As a potential client, I initially think:

- 1000 entries is rather small. If I were to purchase a glossary I would want at least 10 times that to make a significant contribution to any working TM.

- I know the price and the number of entries, but little else. Which coutries is it suitable for? (Br or Am Eng to which Sp variety?). What file format is it in? (a useful .csv file is totally different from a .pdf file). BTW, the pdf file on the sample page is editable, i.e., I can copy the text and steal your sample research. How can I pay for it? (the small amount makes the payment form relevant... my bank charges more than that for a wire transfer)... there's too little information in general.

- You include a reliability ratio for each term. Wait... what?. You mean I'm going to buy this glossary and the maker says he is not sure whether the term is right?. You either know or don't know, you can't sell it otherwise. Imagine opening up a dictionary and finding a definition with the addendum "However, this word can mean other things as well. We are not sure".

Exaggerations apart, the main point here is that even if the "reliability code" means another thing (for example, how well would the term be understood in a different country), I simply wouldn't know that since there is no information included about it in the sample. (BTW, all terms have a 3 ratio... on a scale from what to what?).

All in all, I don't feel compelled to but it based solely on its size and lack of information. Does this undermine its quality? Of course not. Maybe I'm losing the best opportunity I will ever have of owning a great high-quality medical glossary for just 10 bucks. The point is, under such little assurances, most people would do the same.


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Rossana Triaca  Identity Verified
Uruguay
Local time: 12:30
Member (2002)
English to Spanish
The higher end of the spectrum. Nov 4, 2004

If I'm not mistaken, the ECU was around 1,1 USD at that time...
that's about USD 7,15 per term. A very good example of how much a good glossary is worth for a large company.

Good terminology is a very valuable intellectual asset.


Indeed. I couldn't agree more.


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A Hayes
Australia
Local time: 01:30
?!! Nov 4, 2004

[quote]Rossana Triaca wrote:

Well, I think the problem here is a matter of marketing or selling estrategy, not price. How many daily hits do you have on your page? (I had a hard time finding the glossary in the first place). Have you ever tried to sell a glossary directly to an agency? Have you ever advertised, even with as little as text adds in Proz?

- You include a reliability ratio for each term. Wait... what?. You mean I'm going to buy this glossary and the maker says he is not sure whether the term is right?. You either know or don't know, you can't sell it otherwise. Imagine opening up a dictionary and finding a definition with the addendum "However, this word can mean other things as well. We are not sure".



Rossana, the tone of yr email is a little arrogant... just because i have a down to earth approach it doesn't mean i was born yesterday, thank you.

i don't have much time for explanations, but i certainly did not compile the glossary with the purpose of selling it.

As for marketing strategies... well, they seem to be working pretty darn well for me! have been for the last however many years. In any case, the reason why the glossary is where it is (on my website) is because it's just a resource. If anyone is interested, they can buy it, but that's not my source of income.

The reliability code indicator has nothing to do with being sure or unsure of a term, it indicates neologisms, etc. sorry but don't have time to explain in detail.

have a good day -


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Rossana Triaca  Identity Verified
Uruguay
Local time: 12:30
Member (2002)
English to Spanish
That was not my intention at all... Nov 4, 2004

I'm terribly sorry if my post came across in that way; I certainly had no idea of the possibility of it being taken so, or I would have not posted it in the first place.

I just said I thought you were selling your expertise too cheap (USD 0,01 per word); you explained that selling the glossary at any other price was not feasible. Well, I just wanted you to see your offer from the outside, as a potential client would, only to help you with ideas/suggestions that would make it feasible to sell your research at the price you really deserve for it.

Please re-read my post later more carefully when you have the time, and do get back to me if it still sounds that bad for a more in-depth explanation.


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Elvira Stoianov  Identity Verified
Luxembourg
Local time: 16:30
German to Romanian
+ ...
??? Nov 4, 2004

Alanguelaise wrote:


I know he really wants to get his hands on the glossary for future work with a new agency...


What I don't understand, why don't you suggest they continue working with you (better communication, avoiding intermediary agency, consistent translations, etc.) and you keep your knowledge base. Why don't they work with you?


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Alanguelaise  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 16:30
Member (2005)
French to English
TOPIC STARTER
I tried that, Elvira!! Nov 4, 2004

Elvira Stoianov wrote:

What I don't understand, why don't you suggest they continue working with you (better communication, avoiding intermediary agency, consistent translations, etc.) and you keep your knowledge base. Why don't they work with you?


Believe me, I tried this first, Elvira.
The problem is they're a huge international company, & don't want to take the risk of working directly with a freelancer who could be taken sick one day when they've got something highly urgent to do and leave them in a mess. Their reasoning is that at least with an agency the agency could offer them another translator to get the work done.
They even got the new agency to call me as they were so keen to keep working with me, but the new agency wouldn't agree to my rates. I lowered them quite a bit to try to keep the contract, but I refused to go as low as they wanted - I know my value on the market!!!


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LegalTransform  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 10:30
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Après moi, le déluge Nov 5, 2004

Alanguelaise wrote:



Believe me, I tried this first, Elvira.
The problem is they're a huge international company, & don't want to take the risk of working directly with a freelancer who could be taken sick one day when they've got something highly urgent to do and leave them in a mess. Their reasoning is that at least with an agency the agency could offer them another translator to get the work done.
They even got the new agency to call me as they were so keen to keep working with me, but the new agency wouldn't agree to my rates. I lowered them quite a bit to try to keep the contract, but I refused to go as low as they wanted - I know my value on the market!!!


In that case, you have just answered your own question. The client refuses to hire you because they believe you would be too unreliable and the new agency refuses to hire you because you charge too much.

You should charge them a lot (around $2000 - $2500) for this glossary. If they pay - consider it severance pay. If they refuse, they will not be happy with the new agency's work and this agency or perhaps the client will come running back to you.

Après moi, le déluge

At this point, you have unfortunately lost this client - why give up all of your hard work for nothing.


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