on Self Publishing Advice:
Many of us have firsthand experience with an exploitative vanity press, so when we see a friend falling prey to that same seductive sales pitch, it’s especially heartbreaking.
Vanity presses are frequently substandard publishers and incompetent marketers — but they are masters of manipulation. They have honed the art of the sales pitch to a fine edge, and they know exactly what buttons to push to appeal to a novice author’s hopes and insecurities. The end goal is not to sell books to readers, but to sell overpriced services to authors.
So how do you explain the reality to an author who desperately wants to believe the sales pitch? Negative reviews and watchdog ratings can only go so far to dissuade someone from stepping off that cliff. But there’s an easy way to demonstrate that a vanity press is a poor deal for the author: show them the results.