IT and Business Insights for SMB Solution Providers

Save Your Money: There Is No One-Time Miracle

I have seen a certain kind of desperate spending creeping into our industry. It's not completely new or unique to our industry, but I believe it's becoming more common. Here's what I mean.

Sometimes,  you just need to take action, and you don't know what to do. So you decide to try just about anything.

For example, you might want to sign one more client. Or somehow get ahead of the cash flow crunch. Or just hire another tech to handle the workload.

And so, you decide to invest in any exciting $1,000 (or $2,500 or $5,000) program that looks like it will solve your problem. And so you spend time jumping from one thing to another.

And guess what? None of them work.

Well, that's not fair. In reality, all of them probably work if you stick with it and stop jumping around. If you just picked one thing and worked it like crazy, you would almost certainly find success.

I am seeing a growing trend in our industry of folks offering quick-fix solutions that cannot possibly work for most people. And I can from their marketing campaigns which books they've read and which tools they've subscribed to.

As someone who sells into this industry, I have been tempted down that road. But one big thing stops me: I hate it when people return purchases. Almost all quick-fix programs can expect a 25-50% return rate due to buyer's remorse.

I never want buyers to have remorse. So I try to only sell truly useful products and programs.

People always email me, asking my opinion of various programs designed to help IT professionals make more money. The truth is: I know of ONE person who is a sham and has taken money but never delivered results.

But I know a couple dozen programs and individuals that work their butts off to deliver exactly what they promise. It all adds up to this: YOU have to do the work. Signing up for a marketing program will not create a flood of new business; following the program religiously for six months will.

Brian Tracy has a great line about employees who ask for raises: "Your raise will become effective when you do."

It's the same way with improving your business. Your success will become effective when you stop bouncing around, trying a new thing every month, and focus on one thing until it works. As your company grows and you can delegate tasks to various people, your company will be able to focus on two things, and then three, four, and more.

A great deal of the sales techniques we are seeing originated by selling useless vitamin supplements over the internet through "new" techniques that were massively profitable - despite 50% return rates. These techniques are not pyramid schemes (mostly), but they rely on a very temporary success method.

They basically expect the average customer to make a big purchase and follow one of three paths:

1) Ask for your money back

2) Never purchase again

3) Buy into an even higher-level program that's even more expensive

Here's the interesting part. Almost everyone who takes option #3 turns out to be extremely successful. Why? Because they picked a path and stuck with it. When you're paying a large monthly fee, you tend to take it seriously, take action, and follow the plan.

Bottom line: It's better to spend $2,500 per month on the same program over and over than to spend that money on a new program every month, starting over and over.

Remember, almost anything you do consistently over time will bring you success.

:-)

About the Author

Karl W. Palachuk, is a technology consultant, author, speaker, trainer, and coach. He is the author of fifteen books. He has built several successful businesses, including two managed services companies. His books include Managed Services in a Month and The Network Documentation Workbook. Karl is a frequent trainer and speaker in the SMB Community. His popular blog can be found at SmallBizThoughts.com. He has more than twenty years experience as an I.T. professional and serves on advisory panels for several hardware and software companies.

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