It Doesn't Matter What You Think
Perceptions are everything.
If someone believes something to be true, it almost doesn’t matter what the data says. The most reasoned arguments and the most robust set of facts will pale in comparison to their beliefs, values and worldview.
And as a marketer or salesperson reaching out to current and potential customers, it certainly doesn’t matter what you think. It only matters what they think, how they perceive the facts.
So talking to those customers with fact-based arguments is never going to work. (Trust me, I’ve tried it, and tried it, and tried it…) At the end of the day, customers buy for specific reasons - some of which are related to the facts of the matter, others that are not.
To make themselves feel better.
To align themselves with a belief system they value.
To position themselves more positively/strongly in the eyes of their peers.
To move themselves forward in some way.
This is as true in B2B settings as it is in B2C ones. As much as we think business executives make cold, hard, objective decisions, they just as often can be driven by a myriad of additional/other motives - to reduce risk, to foster an internal change, to align with a particular organizational ethos.
All of which is to say that decisions to buy or not to buy are not always made on our assessment of the truth, but rather what the buyer considers to be their truth.
The sooner we accept that, the better our chances of being able to get our message across.