Analogy: Super Bowl tickets and HP Care Pack options

Super Bowl 2013 and where to sit

The 2013 Super Bowl, held this year in the Mercedes-Benz Super Dome in New Orleans, was a great game! I enjoyed both the 49ers and the Ravens. However, here exists an interesting bit of trivia - neither team had ever lost a Super Bowl. San Francisco was 5 – 0 and the Ravens were 1 – 0. And, if the game wasn’t intriguing enough, there are always those terrific commercials, with millions tuning in just to watch the ads. More trivia: a 30 second commercial spot went for about $4m -- $133,000 a second! I believe that was the highest ever average ad price. Over 160 million people tuned in for at least some of the broadcast.

Out of curiosity, I checked online for super bowl ticket prices a few weeks prior to the game. Ticket prices ranged from $2,500 to $30,000. Of course the best seats demanded the highest prices, but it was hard to determine where the best value was just by looking on the Website.

A customer will never buy something he doesn’t know is offered

I’ve purchased tickets online for the super bowl before and I guess I got what I expected. I also know I’ve called in to get tickets, and very often they have package deals and other promotions that aren’t just dependent on the seat number. Sometimes this information is volunteered, and sometimes I had to ask for it. One time I asked for a group discount and got it. Then later found out that for just a few dollars more I could have had 5 parking vouchers thrown in. That option was not presented to me, and I didn’t know enough to ask for it, so I missed out on a better value.

Heck, maybe there were even more options I didn’t know about. Such as personal servers, priority access to special food and drink concessions, special discounts on souvenirs, or other ways to add value to our experience. The secret is to think all the options through…and then ask for them.

I relate this to everyday business decisions, too. For instance, let’s say you have a specific business needs. Your IT Environment has grown very complicated. Things are not working smoothly anymore. There is considerably more downtime now. Your sys admin is overworked. So, do you just hire another person to help out? You know the obvious choices, but are there better value options?

How do you know what you don’t know?

In my example above, did you know HP Care Pack offers proactive product and environmental services that help solve those issues I described? Perhaps the right Care Pack option is a lower-cost, better long-term solution that just hiring more staff. Perhaps the best value is getting a better handle on the sprawl in your data center. Getting more efficient to lower cost is just one element. Getting the right level of support on all those various products is going to reduce downtime and help you meet your SLA’s.

Here’s the way I see it. We all strive to make the best, informed decisions. Trouble is, we don’t always know what we don’t know. We don’t always know there are some free parking passes. We don’t even know to ask or how to ask.

Always ask about all the options and combinations that are available. Then and only then will you have the information you need to do what is right for your business.

Warranties protect the product; HP Care Pack protects your business.

For more information, please visit our HP solutions page and fill out “Request Information” form.

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