How To Price Projects Exceeding 100,000 Words
Do you ever wonder about how you should quote for projects with enormous word counts?
We’ve worked out a formula you can use for preparing quotes for clients when a script’s word count exceeds 100,000 words.
Take a look at what we’ve shared and also let us know what the word count of the longest script you’ve ever recorded was!
Join the conversation now!
That’s A Lot Of Words!
Earlier today we received an email from one of our voice talent customers who was trying to sort out how much she should charge a client for a 179,000 project. Not a bad problem to have, wouldn’t you agree?
Here’s how we broke down the math:
Average speaking speed is 125 words per minute
179,000 / 125 = 1200 minutes
1200 minutes / 60 minutes in an hour = 20 hours
Having A Finished Hourly Rate
It’s good to have a finished hourly rate for edited material on hand. If the work is comparable to audiobooks, the going rate is between $200-$300 per edited hour. Let’s go with $250.
20 hours X $250/hour = $5000.
As always, when working with clients off the site we recommend 50% upfront and 50% due immediately upon receipt of the finished work.
Quoting for Audiobooks and Other Long Content
Quoting for audio book recordings can be a tricky business. There are so many factors to consider when embarking on an audio book recording, including the length (total word count), complexity of the book, artistic direction, consistency, and technical requirements.
After those formalities are accounted for, then follows the herculean task of bringing the audio book through all of its ups and downs to a graceful completion, including extra time spent editing, mastering, etc.
From what we’ve heard, the average word costs a client somewhere between .01 and .05 (basically, anywhere between a penny to a nickel USD / Canadian).
Examples of irregular or specialty words could be ‘ubiquitous’, ‘lieutenant’, or ‘behemoth’.
Foreign words could be ‘connoisseur’, ‘gnocchi’, or ‘rooibos’.
Technical or medical words could be ‘tetracycline’, ‘idiopathic pericarditis’, or ‘Lymantria dispar’.
The voice talents’ professional responsibilities set aside, the greatest, or, one could say most gargantuan challenge lies in educating people about how much it costs to record an audio book.
Some clients honestly have no idea regarding what an audio book recording should cost. All they are thinking about is selling the book after it’s recorded at a competitive price. Many audio books are sold online at websites for a fraction of the price that one would suppose, simply because the file is available as an MP3 download, an electronic product that costs nothing to reproduce and close to nothing to maintain.
Also, the cheaper the audio book, the more people are likely to buy it, and perhaps, they may buy multiple books while they are there. As I said before, it’s a simple download or file transfer with little to no exertion for the buyer or seller.
While these merchants make money off of the product in small increments, the sales volumes are high. Sales are made over and over again at no additional cost to the merchant save for any advertising they may do to sell the audio book and potential web hosting / accounting fees.
Now, this isn’t the case for all audio book companies. There are some that recognize that they need to properly compensate the voice actor for their work and sell the product for a premium. The fact of the matter is that voice actors everywhere need to remain steadfast regarding what they charge so that there is no confusion where the client is concerned, particularly individuals whose only goal is to make a quick buck.
What’s The Longest Script You’ve Ever Recorded?
Whether in the hundreds, thousands or hundreds of thousands word wise, we’d love to hear from you!
Be sure to comment below or write in via email to let us know.
P.S. If you’ve had experience quoting for these kind of jobs and want to add your thoughts, feel free to share how you did it too!