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Why People "Really" Don't Want Your What You're Offering

Updated: Mar 2, 2023

So, you had this great idea, bought the materials, employed the right people, it all looks great on paper... but NO ONE, save your grandmother and your creepy neighbor three doors down, have bought your product.

How can that be? It's an amazing idea and will help a ton of people make their life easier!

a sign next to a desert road that reads road ends

Wellllll..... perhaps it's not as great as you think, but if it IS that good then you probably have a serious marketing issue. Either way, you should investigate what is causing the lack of sales.

Let's look at three really obvious reasons why people don't want your product or service:


1. They Simply Haven't Heard About Your Product

Visibility is vital for a new business to succeed. And if nobody has even heard of your product, then how do you expect them to purchase it?

I know, it sounds basic and silly, but you would be surprised how many small businesses fall into this trap. In fact, it is one of the most common type of case studies in business schools. They typical is that the business owners assume that because they believe in their product that it would "of course" sell like hot cakes.

No matter what route you take - word of mouth, pay-per-click, social media blasting, or even cold-calling - you've got to make sure you're outreach is performing optimally.

It is extremely important that you do regular reviews of your marketing efforts and ensure they are producing a positive ROI. If one type of marketing isn't measuring up, try implementing another or switching it up. If your target market is Senior Citizens, chances are they aren't on Instagram... see where I'm going with this?

The most likely reason your product is not selling as much as you would like is your marketing is just not up to par. If marketing just isn't your strong suit you might want to consider subbing it out. It's too critical of an item to do half assed.

We, obviously, recommend that you bring a business coach on board. They can usually work efficiently to diagnose your marketing issues. Plus, most business coaches offer specific coaching on marketing. You can see an example of by checking out our own marketing coaching.

2. They Don't Understand What It Is

Make it easier for people to understand what your product is about.

Okay, so they've seen it, but they're still not buying it... it could be because they don't understand what the product actually is.

Keeping in mind it might not be as simple as understanding what it is, but more about "what" it is.

Just the other day I had a conversation with someone where I sent her an email, on behalf of another business, with all sorts of information and links about their product, but when I called her, she had no idea what the company did or was trying to sell to her. In my head, I was like- "did you even read the email, because it's pretty self-explanatory," but in actuality I ended up asking her questions to see where she might not understand and related the product to what she did.

a lightpole with some stickers on it. one of them says smart phones, dumb people
Dealing with it is the REAL Struggle.

You may be thinking - these people are so dumb! Don't they understand they need this product!

It's not that people really are that dumb. In the case above, it was more because the company's marketing wasn't customized to hit their target demographic. Even though my email spelled out the product, the product itself didn't explain itself to the potential customer.

To combat this, try positioning your product or service to something come off more relatable to your target customer. Speak in their language, so to speak. Communicate that your product and service satisfies a need of theirs, but do so in a way they best understand.

3. ...Maybe Your Idea Really Does Suck

A bunch of you might scoff at the though... But... there is an off chance that your really great, amazing, fantastic idea is actually really terrible. Not all hope it lost, though!

Girl helping a boy back up after falling down
Never let setbacks in life or business hold you down

Try revamping your idea, a slight change in perspective can make all the difference. Considering targeting different markets or providing support tools or materials for free that make it have a stronger appeal.

Take the example of selling ice cream in the winter... In the summer, ice cream sells like hotcakes (ironic here, huh?), but in the winter we've got to switch it up! Check out what Ben & Jerry's does when winter comes in Vermont.

Try having third parties give you some insight on your products. Form focus groups and get a general consensus of how people feel, and more importantly, why they feel that way. This will help you truly hone in on what your value proposition is and how people understand it. Then you can hopefully make adjustments to better sell in the future.


As small business owners, it is extremely common for you to have a solid grasp on your services, but not so much on things like how to market those product. The vast majority of people who start small businesses didn't come from the marketing industry. There's no shame in looking for help in this area!

Overall, if your product (or service) isn't selling like you think it should, you might want to consider getting a second set of eyes on your marketing plan... you have a marketing plan right?

Hiring a business coach, like Out of the Box Advisors, who specialize in these types of issues would be a smart and simple way to make sure you're doing all you can for your business. Plus, we offer free consultations so there's no risk. See the link below to book your session!

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