Updated: Oct 19, 2021
Wayne State University Press identified a need for a system that would unify and manage its data feeds: Virtusales’ BiblioLIVE hosted publishing software was selected.
The Challenge Wayne State University Press was using an internal FileMaker Pro bibliographic data system that had been implemented in 1992, and partially rewritten in 2002, before the rise in eBooks and digital publishing. The problem with the legacy system was that it couldn’t effectively repurpose or distribute the data.This meant data was living in 10 different places as people would pull the data out of FileMaker, put it in Excel, edit it, and then merge it into the required format. Technical Project Manager, Bonnie Russell, explains: “If the data changed, for example price or marketing copy, it had to be updated in multiple places and then redistributed ... It seemed to be a never ending cycle and the data was never the same in each place.” The Solution BiblioLIVE end-to-end publishing solution
Challenges Managing Metadata
There is a huge demand on publishers to repurpose title metadata. Bonnie explains: “We need to send our data to 10+ different partners including Ingram, Amazon, Edelweiss, and Barnes and Noble. Before we could send ONIX we had to send spreadsheets that were in 10+ different formats. In addition to sending data to our vendors, we had to use a convoluted multi-step method to feed our bibliographic data to our website. While we had a publishing database and data went in relatively easy, it was not at all easy to get out of it.
Metadata Solutions Data isn’t just sent once, it continually changes and evolves, but it will make or break the sale of a book online. No matter how it reaches the consumer, it needs to be rich and correct. There are numerous options for managing this process, some that are easier than others:
Using in-house publishing systems and manually distributing the data (logging into each individual retailer website and uploading data).
Using an in-house publishing system and then transferring the data into an ONIX transfer tool.
Using a fully integrated publishing system that does everything.
Single, centralised database
High quality, data-rich, automated ONIX feeds
One system for both journals and books
Features scheduled data deliveries to update partners and distributors on a weekly basis
Offers automated daily updated for publisher's website
Bonnie comments: “When we moved over to BiblioLIVE we wanted to have all of our book and journal metadata centrally located. This would allow all of our departments to feel confident that they have the most current and correct data for any purpose. By using a central core database, our metadata can be automatically repurposed, distributed to third parties, and updated in our Title Information sheets, website and catalogues.” "By using a central core database, our metadata can be automatically repurposed, distributed to third parties, and updated in our Title Information sheets, website and catalogues." Bonnie Russell, Technical Project Manager, Wayne State University Press
Increased Data Quality and Quantity
Before Wayne State University Press moved to BiblioLIVE, its management database held only the most basic data. It was not written with eBooks and their associated metadata in mind, and lacked a great deal of specificity. Before migrating, they could only send their distributors basic metadata, but now using BiblioLIVE’s data management tools they are sending an average of five times more data per title. This means that consumers have more information available to attract them to purchase the title. Their authors are also happier as their titles are correctly and richly represented online. Bonnie explains, “The biggest difference has been in the metadata available for our edited volumes. Before only the names of the editors were included in our metadata, but now using BiblioLIVE we are able to send the names of all contributors, which increases the discoverability of those titles, and recognises the individuals whose work is included.”
With BiblioLIVE, Wayne State University Press now have their partners set up to receive ONIX 2.1 or ONIX 3.0 along with their print and eBooks automatically, on a weekly basis for their distributors, and on a daily basis for their website. Wayne State University Press’ data is not only up to date, it happens automatically. This has freed up their staff to work on issues that truly need human intervention. "We have gained many weeks’ worth of staff time in the sending of metadata to our distributors alone, allowing us much more flexibility in updating prices, reviews and awards information on both our distributors’ and our website." Bonnie Russell, Technical Project Manager, Wayne State University Press
Now Wayne State University Press is looking to expand its network for distributing data, and is able to deliver its metadata to additional retailers, including Kobo and Sony Reader. Since it has been using BiblioLIVE to store and distribute its data, it has seen double-digit growth in sales, as its titles have become more discoverable through better, more accurate, metadata.
Employee Efficiency Gains
Before Wayne State University Press had BiblioLIVE, it would only update its partners twice a year due to the work involved. It would take the marketing team two to three weeks each time to update the data to all distributors. It would literally take weeks to find out which titles had data changed, and what those changes were. Bonnie explains: “We then had to organise the data into the required formats. Now it just happens!”
Benefits of BiblioLIVE
A central, core database, allowing metadata to be automatically repurposed and distributed to third parties
A week's worth of staff time gained in sending metadata to distributors alone
Double-digit growth in sales
IMPROVED DATA QUALITY
Five times more data sent to distributors per title, ensuring more detailed and accurate descriptions online
Increased searchability and accessibility online
Authors are happier as their titles are correctly and richly represented
Data is automatically updated
WSUP now have its partners set up to receive ONIX 2.1 or ONIX 3.0 automatically, on a weekly basis for its distributors and on a daily basis for their website