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Carly Stec

By Carly Stec

May 23, 2014


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5 Mistakes That Make it Impossible to Grow Your Business

Carly Stec

By Carly Stec

May 23, 2014

5 Mistakes That Make it Impossible to Grow Your Business

5_mistakes_that_make_it_impossible_to_grow_your_business_What do Amazon, Apple, Disney, and Google have in common?

Believe it or not, all four of these gigantic businesses started in garages. Talk about humble beginnings, right?

The simple truth is that profitable and sustainable businesses aren't created overnight.

In a competitive marketplace with an overwhelming amount of content saturation working against you, it's becoming increasingly difficult for businesses to generate enough brand awareness to even get their businesses off the ground. 

However, if you're reading this right now, it's evident that you aren't willing to let a little resistance keep you from positioning your business for success.

If you're ready to make moves in the right direction, you'll want to address these five mistakes that are stunting your ability to grow your business.

1 - You Haven't Made Website Redesign a Priority

If you can't remember the last time your revamped your website, or you haven't touched it once since it's launch, you're not getting out of it what you could be. 

People aren't just judging books by their covers these days, in fact, they're judging businesses by their websites just the same. Point being, your website should be so sexy that you'd want to wear it proud on a t-shirt. 

If your website is riddled with 404 pages, low quality images, or a ton of industry jargon, you are going to be passed up by visitors who assume that your product or service will be equally as ineffective as your marketing capabilities.

We too once has a website that kinda sucked, check it out:


But our new one? 


Quite the turn around if I do say so myself.

By reevaluating the way we presented our information, we were able to provide our website visitors with a much more human experience. It's conversational, it's attractive, it's inviting, and most importantly, it converts.

So ask yourself the following questions: Is our website delivering the results we want? Does it look outdated? Is it responsive? (more than 17% of all web traffic comes from mobile devices) Does it match our tone? Does it speak to our personas?

If you answered no to any of these questions, you're stifling your business' ability to grow profitable. Perhaps it is time for that website redesign

2 - You're Only Optimizing for Search Engines

Too often businesses become so wrapped up in optimizing their efforts to ensure that they are picked up by search engines, that they've lost touch with who they're actually creating the content for.

Marketers should be creating content that aims to provide solutions for their persona's common challenges, and serve as a utility above anything else. 

While practices like keyword optimization are necessary, creating content that provides solutions, answers questions, and addresses pain points is what is going to set your business apart from your competitors.

Just look at the story of Marcus Sheridan

When faced with a crippled economy and zero demand for pool and spa installation, Sheridan started writing blog posts that addressed every pool question a consumer could possibly have, ever. By inserting himself into the mind of potential customers, he managed to not only save his business but also become the number one pool company in the United States specializing in fiberglass pools.

If you're not seeing the business growth you desire, Marcus Sheridan has four words for you - they ask, you answer.

3 - You Don't Know Who You're Creating Content For

Nailing down the details that make up your ideal personas should come before anything else. Before first-drafts, before brainstorming, before conceptualization. 

The quality of your content depends on it. 

Simply put, the more in sync your content is with the wants and needs of your ideal customers, the easier it will be for you to start increasing sales and retaining more customers. 

Additionally, if the content appeals to them, they're going to be more willing to share it. Having your content shared on social media by prospects allows you to get in front of a whole new set of eyeballs, who will hopefully find your content interesting as well, and repeat the process.

In order to achieve this type of resonance, you have to collect a ton of information about the people that you are trying to reach. The following questions can be used to guide this type of research:

  • Role: What is their title? What skills does it require? Who do they report to? Does anyone report to them? 
  • Company: What industry are they in? How large is their company?
  • Goals: What are their responsibilities? What goals are they working towards? How are they working towards them?
  • Challenges: What are their main pain points? What is holding them back from accomplishing their goals?
  • Watering Holes: Where do they go to consume information? What specific channels do they frequent? Do they subscribe to a particular blog? Club? Organization?
  • Personal: Gender? Age? Education? Children? Location?
  • Shopping Habits: What is their preferred method of interaction with sellers? What factors influence their purchasing decisions? 

If you need more help defining your personas, our buyer persona kit has been carefully assembled everything you need to research them. 

4 - You Haven't Nurtured a Single Lead

According to research conducted by Marketo, companies that invest in lead nurturing generate 50% more sales-ready leads at 33% lower cost per lead. 

If you're not excelling in terms of lead nurturing, you're in your own way in terms of business growth.

With nurtured leads producing a 20% increase in sales opportunities versus non-nurtured leads, the value of lead nurturing simply isn't up for debate. (Source: DemandGen Report)

The trouble many businesses face is that they sit around and wait for their website visitors to pick up the phone and call them. While the phone works two ways, this one is on you.

By reaching out early on with useful information and resources, you'll find that it's much easier to convert visitors into leads, and then start moving them down the funnel. 

Businesses also need to pay close attention to their personas when pooling the content they'll need to maintain conversations with their prospects. While Maggie the Marketer may call for resources X, Y, and Z in order to ensure relevance, Charlie the CEO may respond better to resources A, B, and C. 

5 - You're Not Measuring or Monitoring Anything

If you're not measuring and monitoring the success of your campaigns, you're not setting your business up for improvement.

After all, how can you identify you weaknesses if you don't have a plan in place for reporting?

Tracking metrics is a fundamental aspect of your campaigns because it allows you to take a step back and decide whether or not your efforts are succeeding in driving your goals home.

By keeping tabs on the numbers produced by your efforts, it's much easier to identify where most of your traffic is coming from, and adjust your strategy in accordance. 

If you know that Twitter is driving a ton of relevant traffic back to your website, you'll want to devise a plan to boost your activity there in order to drive even more traffic back. 

To put it quite simply, you can't take action if you aren't aware. By keeping a close eye on the performance of your efforts, you can make the changes necessary to generate even greater results for your business. 

Free Assessment:

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Take this free, 5-minute assessment and learn what you can start doing today to boost traffic, leads, and sales.