Type Foundries—What are you looking for in submissions?

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Troy
Troy Posts: 1
Hi everyone, I coach designers on how to make type, and I often get the question, "How and where can I submit my typeface for consideration?". I can only speak from my experience, so I would love to broaden my response by hearing from you about what you are looking for. Every foundry has different requirements, so I'm open to any comments or questions you think I should ask. I would love to speak to anyone interested in sharing your thoughts.

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  • PabloImpallari
    PabloImpallari Posts: 788
    edited July 6
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    Troy said:
    and I often get the question, "How and where can I submit my typeface for consideration?"
    I will advise designer to promote their typefaces in their own websites in first place, instead of submitting it to another people.

    It may the most obvious way to proceed to some, but it may be a totally new and radical idea to others.

    Not only about fonts, but in all areas of life.
    For example, in Western culture, job seekers typically present their resumes to multiple companies in pursuit of employment opportunities. Contrastingly, in Indian culture, individuals often seek out a specific person they admire or respect —effectively 'choosing' their future boss— and then contemplate how they can contribute to that person's endeavors.
    While both approaches aim to secure employment, they reflect opposite perspectives: 'seeking a job' versus 'choosing a boss'. You can apply a similar logic to your fonts :)

    Or even better, do both things at once!
  • Igor Petrovic
    Igor Petrovic Posts: 271
    edited July 7
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    It is hard to give a short answer without elaborating on the current trends in the font market. But as a quick input, I would say it depends on the long-term strategy and ambitions.

    Does one plan to produce more typefaces in the future or just to leverage the potential of that one — made as a graphic design side adventure? If the former, it is a chance to start growing own business around it. If later, it makes sense to offer it through the store (rather than the foundry).

    The overall impression is that the font market has been in crisis in recent years. I have no experience partnering with foundries (only directly with stores), but if the foundry struggles to sell its own typefaces it is a question to which point they will be enthusiastic about promoting the third-party product (where they earn less). Not to mention that many foundries are further distributed through stores, which means even lower commissions for the original type designer.

    That said, there are font stores that keep up a fair relationship with type designers. I would suggest Font Brothers with the best commission on the market (65% goes to the designer, and it will remain so). Stuart Sandler from FB is active here.

    Also, Type Network and I Love Typography. I know more about TN since Matthew regularly shares news and information about their business here. But heard a few nice reviews about ILT as well.

    One thing worth mentioning is that running own business enables agile font development (through font versioning). That way one gradually improves the product, has regular communication with customers that follow the progress, and earns while working.
  • James Montalbano
    James Montalbano Posts: 92
    edited July 9
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    Pricing is a personal decision but generally we prefer that individual weights are around $12 USD at the low end
    I do not take submissions, and only market my own work, but I've always been shocked at how most of the industry price individual fonts.
  • Thomas Phinney
    Thomas Phinney Posts: 2,808
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    @James Montalbano shocked in what ways? That the pricing is low? Is high? That there is a surprisingly large or small discount to buy the full family compared to the individual font price?
  • Stuart Sandler
    Stuart Sandler Posts: 354
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    @James Montalbano for clarity, $12 USD is what I'd consider the 'floor' on pricing but generally a 5 End User Desktop Use license in general is $20-30 USD based on what is typically listed at most distributors and again, per single weight, not family.

    I recall at one point a foundry owner shared his pricing schema for families which was the base price + $10 USD per additional weight to build in a bulk discount.

    Again, pricing remains subjective and is always personal taste as it should be but it should also reflect the marketplace IMHO.
  • Typedesigner
    Typedesigner Posts: 41
    edited July 9
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    The industry standard for font licensing prices has been $39 to $59 for well-developed fonts for many years. However, many foundries charge more. The design of a well-designed font with an extensive character set requires a significant amount of time and effort. Furthermore, the creation of marketing materials also requires time and resources. It is important to note that these prices only represent turnover. The profit is calculated after deducting all other foundry costs. 

    For companies that purchase font licences for various projects or corporate branding, the price is not the primary determining factor; rather, it is the suitability of the fonts for the company that is of paramount importance.
  • Eris Alar
    Eris Alar Posts: 441
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    This might be a topic for a seperate thread, but I wonder how lower-but-not-free pricing compares to higher pricing in terms of success for the foundry? I know there are foundries I adore but I have never been able to justify to myself licensing type from as their prices are just too high for me. Yet, I may spend the same amount if total money elsewhere where I feel I’ve getting ‘better’ value. This is usually expressed in family size, so extra weights and styles. I also buy a lot of my type on sale, which I’m aware is it’s own thorny topic too.