Just The Facts, Ma’am

Why do so many business owners insist on acting in opposition to facts?  

Recently on a webinar, I had four highly successful members discussing how they went from no customers, no list, no marketing, no money and piles of debt to $4 million, $5 million, $8.5 million and $20 million, two of them in tiny communities where you could argue there are no big opportunities.  

One of the commonalities they shared was having a backbone when it came to price and selling managed services over break-fix. All agreed THIS was a critical component of their success and the ONLY reason they struggled initially when they were broke was due to their own limiting beliefs about charging more and the possibility of closing bigger deals.

Immediately following, a viewer wrote and insisted HIS business was different because HIS town was small, and NOBODY bought managed services because it was IMPOSSIBLE to “charge that much.” Bollocks

He just saw two MSPs who were living in towns smaller than his discuss how the “they won’t pay” excuse is all head trash and not at all true, with one talking about recently closing a $19,000 a month deal five miles from his office in a rural town of less than 300,000 people. This is a FACT. It’s also a fact that there are many MSPs out there easily charging north of $100 per seat, many $200+ in the larger cities, where costs are higher. Yet I’d be willing to bet the guy who wrote me was not the only one thinking they couldn’t charge more or sell managed services – he was the only one dumb enough to write to me for some still-unknown purpose. To convince me? Convince him? Doesn’t matter, because HIS result is the same and I’m still eating fillet for dinner. 

To my point: if you want to succeed in business, you must develop a relentless pursuit of FACTS and TRUTH upon which to base your actions and decisions – not feelings, not opinions, not assumptions.

As Mark Twain once said, “Supposing is good, but finding out is better.” Good direct response marketers know that everything should be TESTED, never assumed, and based on facts and actual data. When a client seeks our advice, we give it, but the honest among us will always add, “But TEST it,” warning the client that until we collide the campaign with a potential customer, we really don’t know if the new headline, offer, copy, price point, media, method will actually work. We also need to test it sufficiently, not come to a conclusion after engaging with a limited number of prospects. We seek FACTS

But many don’t seem to care or want to know the facts about a lot of things – about their actual health (not just the absence of acute disease), their actual financial situation (not just “we have enough to pay the bills today”), the actual state of their relationships (not just “we don’t fight”) or the actual state of their business (not just the absence of a crisis). They don’t keep track of or measure critical metrics like leads, sales, MRR and profit because it’s a painful reminder you’re screwing up, standing still or possibly going backwards (and not doing anything about it).   

Many severely lack facts about their customers – how they actually run their business, what they’re frustrated with on a day-to-day basis, how they get paid, trends happening that impact them both positively and negatively, how many potential customers there are in their chosen market area. They lack facts and data on what their clients are interested in, who else they buy from, HOW they actually use technology. Is it any wonder they don’t know what to sell them? 

Many don’t have facts about the very industry we are in and the trends happening.

The influx of private equity funds, the rabid mergers and acquisitions happening, the emergence and growing number of “Super MSPs,” the growing demand for cyber security, compliance solutions and co-managed IT. Such information should be used when steering the ship, but many are chugging along willfully blind to the facts. 

Facebook has rightfully gotten a lot of heat over its “fact-checking” policies. Who exactly is “fact-checking” each post, each video and each comment is not entirely clear, and it appears to many people that it’s simply a form of censoring opinions from people who don’t align with certain agendas. 

Candidly, facts are often hard to discern. For example, there’s no one scientific consensus on much of anything, from climate change to Ivermectin as an effective treatment for Covid. That’s because all these matters are complex and situational, many without substantive evidence to support them yet as “fact,” but sufficient for someone to assume they will prove to BE factual (two different things). As a business owner, you must have the ability to look at the subtle nuances in every situation, weigh pros AND cons and come to the best possible decision based on as much actual, factual information, data and quantifiable metrics as you can gather. ALL coins have two sides, and an argument can be made for anything you want to believe. It is my observation that far too many are intentionally overlooking fact so that they can continue to merrily believe what they want. Very, very dangerous. Ignorance is NOT bliss. Ignorance will get you taken out. 

To get the facts on what you can do in your MSP to close more sales without discounting your services, join us for a two-day workshop at mspsalesplaybook.com