A Real Reason Your Marketing is Not Generating Business

Author : , Date : December 18, 2014


“A Real Reason Your Marketing is Not Generating Business”


Are you finding it hard to generate qualified leads from your marketing that will turn in sales opportunities? If you are, you are not alone. Many businesses struggle with marketing and sales. In fact, it’s probably the top reasons businesses fail. They simply don’t understand how to market in such a way that people want to buy from them.


Bill in San Jose asked a great question


“I’m having a really hard generating leads no matter where I go. If it’s a new networking meeting or if it’s my website, no one seem’s really interested in talking with my about what I do. Why?”


Bill, your question set up my answer beautifully in this video. The truth is, we have to stop making it about us and make it about those we would like to do business with. How do we do that both offline and online?

Watch the video for the answers.


Do you have a thought, comment or question? If so, please share with me below in the comments section and let’s chat! 

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Don Purdum

Don Purdum

Don works with businesses to help them discover who their customers are and what business they are "really" in. He is an award-winning blogger and branding / marketing consultant.
Don Purdum
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24 thoughts on “A Real Reason Your Marketing is Not Generating Business

  1. Hey Don,

    Great question that person asked and an even better answer you provided.

    I lived how you flipped the elevator situation like that. That’s a perfect way to answer a question like that. Get them to talk about themselves and provide some information, then turn it on it;’s head and let them know HOW you solve that problem.

    This is the first time I’m seeing the videos here of you responding to these user questions and I’m liking it a lot. You have a natural gift of gab and it shows.

    Keep up the great work.

    – Andrew

    1. Hi Andrew,

      I really thought it was a great question as well!

      I learned a long time ago how to understand where someone is coming from and how to answer that question by asking a quick question back. Information is always helpful especially if we only have a few minutes together. I can’t answer it if I have a lot of products or service or it takes to long to explain to someone what I do.

      Thanks for the kind words. I appreciate your comment.

      I hope you’re having a Happy New Year!

      ~ Don

  2. Hey Don,

    Hope you had a wonderful Christmas and are enjoying some time with your family.

    You hit the nail on the head with this response. It’s not about you, it’s about them. When I try to explain this to people of course they don’t really want to listen to me because they are in need of prospects today, leads, customers, etc. They feel that when they take the time to listen to others that it’s wasting their time. For some people this concept is just harder to grasp although we both know that if you’re in business for the long run then it’s a concept you better learn quickly.

    It’s all about making those necessary connections and helping enough people get what they want. Yep, it really is that simple and I hope that going into 2015 that more and more people finally get that.

    I love your videos where you’re answering questions. You are doing a fabulous job and I love this response as well.

    As always, great stuff. Happy Holidays and hope you’re enjoying your weekend.


    1. Hi Adrienne,

      It was an amazing Christmas with family and friends and it was a much need break!!!

      I don’t understand the mindset you shared, but I encounter this all of the time as well. It’s so limiting and defeating. I GUARANTEE you if the business owner does not change the way they think, the scaricity mode will put them out of business. It’s not if, it’s when!

      No one wants to buy from someone who they percieve to only care about themselves. When someone is running in scarcity mode they are always thinking about themsleves. They can look either desparate, scarred, or selfish… or any combination. In any case, bye bye.

      Thank you for the encouragement. I’m still suprised at all of the great email questions that are coming in and I look forward to making answering a question per week via video.

      I hope you have an amazing New Year Adrienne!

      ~ Don

  3. Hello Don,

    That was a great video.

    That was very motivating. The tip on focusing on the customer, not yourselves. It seems so important to me now, it now feels like I have fallen for this trap and have missed some opportunities where I should have kept the customer on the spotlight.

    Also I agree with your point, we should really think from the customer’s point of view!

    Once again, Thanks for the tip! Wishing you great holidays!

    1. Hi Nisha,

      Thank you for the kind words!!! Our goals ought to be always to think about and write for our audience. Focusing on them is the key to a great marketing, website, blog, social media and every BUSINESS!

      Thank you for the wishes. Christmas was a great time with family and friends, and of course some much needed time away and rest.

      I hope you have a Happy New Year Nisha! Thank you for the opportunity to contribute to your blog!

      ~ Don

  4. Hey Don,

    I like the way you handled that “Elevator Speech” You have made it so simple to re-direct the question “what do you do” to the person and give them the “answer.”

    I love the advice you have given to the question online. We need to know how the world sees us! We cannot look in the mirror and figure that one out. We need to see things from the customer’s point of view. We are here to answer a problem…simple as that!

    On our blogs we need to talk to people……give them the knowledge however we can..an answer to a problem, etc.

    When it comes to marketing, I love when people come to me and ask me for help, rather than me chasing them. 🙂

    Happy Holidays!


    1. Hi Donna,

      Thank you!!! It took me a few years to figure out that I didn’t have time to tell everyone what I do in a compelling or sexy way… and early on I didn’t have a concept about marketing like I do today.

      However, I knew that if I could at least get them to tell me what was important them I could at least frame it from their position.

      It worked so well that over they years I’ve been able to improve upon it. To be honest, I know of no one who takes this approach. I guarantee that it works!

      If we don’t see the way the world sees us, we will never truly connect with them on purpose.

      I so appreciate your comment as always Donna. Thank you for taking a few minutes to watch my video!

      Merry Christmas!

      ~ Don

  5. Hi Don.

    Well done.

    It’s very easy to fall into the same old trap when somebody asks “what do you do?”. I like the way you turn the question around to get the prospects to identify their challenges. It then makes it easier to say how my products or services are a part od f the solution.

    Thanks for the great tips once again.


    1. Hi Nathan,

      Oh boy, the trap… we tend to default to the only answer we know and that’s what we do. Of course the reality is we don’t think very hard about this and don’t realize people don’t care what we do because to us that is all that matters.

      But, that’s where we are so wrong!

      We have to learn to see our businesses through the filter of the public.

      Thanks for stopping by as Nathan!

      I hope you have a very Merry Christmas!

      ~ Don

  6. Hi Don,

    great video 🙂

    I love the way you talk about that the real focus should be on solving problems
    for the potential customer.

    Many people start blog and businesses because they want to market or sell a
    product or service to an audience.

    Step 1: should be to identify which problem you will be solving, and for which
    type of target audience.

    Step 2: should be to identify if that target audience is willing to pay money
    to get that specific problem solved. You should also check out your competitors
    in your niche, to see if other people are making money on that product for that
    specific audience.

    When step 1 and step 2 have been identified, and if the numbers makes sense….then
    and ONLY then, should you consider starting a business or blog.

    In todays world when people are fed up and on the bring to being immune to the
    traditional marketing (push marketing), shouting their product and price, like
    all their competitors, there is only one way to truly stand out…..

    …to deliver TRUE value, that really solves a problem and creates great value
    for other people. That is content marketing 101.

    Thanks for displaying true content marketing, Don.

    Jim Rohn said that your success is basically defined by to things:
    1. How many problems you`ll solve
    2. How few problems you create

    Tor Refsland

    1. Hi Tor,

      Thank you so much for stopping by!!!! WOW! I really appreciate your strong comment.

      “Many people start blog and businesses because they want to market or sell a product or service to an audience.”

      That’s true… and the reality is they are skilled at one thing but they are probably not skilled at actually building, running and growing a business. Those are acquired skills. Rare is the person who has “it.”

      Marketing and sales are critical to ones success… they must figure out how they are going to do it which means they need ongoing training and business development as owners.

      One aspect is to become masterful at marketing. It doesn’t matter how great your product or service is if no one willing to buy you or they don’t know you’re there.

      Great comment Tor! Have a very Merry Christmas!!!!

      ~ Don

  7. Hi Don,

    That was a great question from Bill. Wow he is right down the street from me. But he said the magic words – “what I do”. Well you are right it is not about what “I” do but instead what problems are we solving. I like how you used the scenario to ask the person what he thinks his real problem is.

    That comes down to listening to others to find out what it is they are going through so we can solve those problems. I bet if we focus on that one problem we end up solving the problems of hundreds or thousands.

    I like how you said we have to give people a reason to want to talk to us farther. We have to stand out and demonstrate we know what we are talking about. We have to connect! Everything has to be from the customers point of view not my own. That has to be my focus – The Customer.

    This video make me really step outside of myself and see things from the customer’s standpoint. Don, you make it so simple to understand. I am motivated by the fact that you have been at this for a while and in the last two years have you truly gotten it! Thank you for sharing.

    1. Hi Nathaniel,

      Yep, he started the question off by identifying unintentionally why he was struggling. He was doing what many of us do when we are starting out, he made it about him…

      I’ve learned that I solve too many problems and I don’t have time to share them all, besides only one or two really apply to any one person. So, why not ask them to tell you what they struggle with instead of assuming or guessing.

      No one really cares what we do if they don’t think they need us! It’s really that simple.

      I’m so glad I was able to ask you step outside of yourself and that you accepted the challenge!!!!

      I hope you have a Merry Christmas Nathaniel. Thank you for taking a few moments to watch and engage with me!

      ~ Don

  8. Hi Don,

    I really love your videos, and no doubt this is one of the specials. 🙂

    I’m totally agree with your point, why buyers should buy a product? We need to provide strong reasons or even build credibility so the buyers can go for it taking their eyes off.

    I personally think, this is really a thing to consider about. Because if we don’t, we might not be making a serious business.

    Thanks for a lovely post. Have a nice day ahead!

    1. Hi Abrar,

      Thank you for stopping by! It’s nice to see you on my blog!

      Thank you for the very kind words. You are right, we must appear credible and competent to our audience. We know we are, but they don’t.

      I hope you have a great week ahead and thank you for your kind comment!

      ~ Don

  9. Hi Don,

    Great video, thanks. It was particularly relevant to me at the moment because from next year I’ve decided to visit some small business networking events so that I can meet people in person – and help them, of course. Have to confess I’ll find this a bit challenging – but it’s all part of growing as a business.

    Love your Christmas tree – and have a great Christmas if we don’t catch up before then.


    1. Hi Joy,

      I love networking in person more than networking online for many reasons. One is I’m a people person and I really enjoy being around smart, gifted, talented and aspiring people!!!

      It is very different than online networking for sure, but the principles are still very much the same. Since I learned offline networking and sales years ago, going online was very easy for me.

      But, I can really see the challenge at the inverse. I’m confident you’ll do great!!!!

      Have a Merry Christmas Joy!

      ~ Don

  10. Hi Don,

    Great advice, I love your tip.

    You can surely get someone’s attention when you relate the topic to them. Often when people try to convince you to buy or like something they don’t make that connection which is probably why there is no interest.

    Anytime sales people try to sell me things I think about the impact on me and if I need it. If you only talk about thinks I don’t care about you won’t keep my attention.

    You definitely have to incorporate the person’s need or desire.


    1. Hi Lea,

      Yep, when someone is trying to convince someone they need to buy you and they press too hard, it’s because they feel they have to go back into marketing mode and convince of “why” they need you.

      Good marketing already answers the “why” they ought to buy from you… sales is giving them the opportunity!

      Great comment Lea, thanks for sharing.

      Have a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

      ~ Don

  11. Hi Don

    Very important topic both for online and offline marketers.

    Everyone knows well what he is covering and minutely monitors his every action to see the progress.

    On the contrary very few people know what they are missing. It is easy to know at the time of final review what they have missed. But in ongoing status one can’t understand where he is not hitting the target.

    You post has offered this solution in a most compact way.

    I believe your video series will do a wonder in days to come but of its focus on most unique topics.

    Thanks a lot for sharing

    1. Hi Mi,

      Thank you for your thoughtful and insightful comment!!! Marketing and sales is not for the faint of heart. There is a lot of competition and we have to do a great job of connecting online… doesn’t matter if you’re an offline or exclusively online business anymore.

      Thank you for your encouragement and support Mi!!!

      Have a great weekend!

      ~ Don

  12. Hi Don,

    it’s a wonderful article on marketing. Bills’ quest ion is similar to what a lot of people will ask, I know that this video will really be of help to all of us.

    haven’t watched the video yet because I’m on mobile now, will do that later in the night when I’m on PC.

    Thanks for sharing and a Merry Xmas 🙂

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