So, your book has been written and now you’re beginning the next leg of your publishing journey: preparing your manuscript for publication. One of the biggest mistakes authors make when preparing their book—aside from attempting to do it alone—is hiring unqualified and/or inexperienced people to handle their manuscripts.
Oftentimes, authors choose these individuals over experts because of the cost. Cheaper isn’t always better. In general, it costs more to hire true professionals than it does to hire amateurs, but what many authors overlook is the fact that in the long run, investing in quality services will drive sales and increase their likelihood to receive a return on their investment. In contrast, hiring a less experienced team or individual will lead to lukewarm or downright negative reception from your audience—and instead of having invested your money in a promising product, you’ll have wasted it. You may even have to pay more just to fix the mistakes of the previous service.
This is why it’s imperative that you use your money wisely and spend it on reputable services that have the necessary experience . . . and have proof of that experience. Too many authors have been conned out of their money and even the rights to their books because they put their trust in subpar services. Always research a service before using them, no matter what kind of service it is.
Here are some red flags to watch out for when making your selection:
- The service has an amateurish website.
In other words, the website was poorly designed, there are excessive errors, or there’s little to no information in regard to company backstory or values, services offered, or past projects.
- The service has no website or social media.
Some people have either a website or a social media page, but most serious, professional services have both or at least a website.
- The pricing isn’t transparent.
Services shouldn’t leave you scratching your head when it comes to pricing and what you’re actually getting for your money.
- There are no testimonials or reviews.
You should be able to find these through their social media or their website. If there aren’t any, you can and should request references.
- There are no examples of the service’s work.
This is especially true for illustration, interior design, exterior design, book trailer, and marketing services. Even editing services can provide before and after text to show their work. If these examples aren’t readily available on their website or social media, request them.
- You receive incoherent, misleading, uneducated, or otherwise unprofessional responses to your queries.
The best way to know if someone else knows what they’re talking about is for you to learn a bit about the subject.
Last but not least, here are some tips to help make researching services more productive:
- Use multiple search engines to get the most information. If you can’t find much info, be wary.
- Put “scam” or “complaints” after the service’s or freelancer’s name in the search engine. If they’ve been reported before, this will usually let you know, unless they rebranded.
- Search for the service on the Better Business Bureau, Bizapedia, and TrustPilot. If a company isn’t on at least one of those sites or any similar site, it isn’t an automatic red flag, but proceed with caution. If you’re working directly with a freelancer, you likely won’t find them on these pages, but you should still be able to find testimonials on their website or request examples of their work.
- Research those who left testimonials and any references the service provides. Don’t be afraid to reach out to these individuals to confirm their satisfaction with the service.
With 1106 Design, you don’t need to worry about receiving subpar service. We always go the extra mile to help our customers achieve their goals, and we’d love to help you do the same. Contact us today to let us know how we can help you, and feel free to peruse our testimonials and past work!