Let me tell you a story… There was this man who failed in business at the age of 21; He was defeated in a legislative race at 22 and then failed again in business at 24. At 26, he had to overcome the death of his sweetheart.

At the age of 27 he had a nervous breakdown; lost the congressional race at age 34; lost a senatorial election at the age of 45; failed to become vice-president at age 47; lost a senatorial race at age 49, and finally was elected President of the United States at age 52.

For most business owners the only goal is to make enough money to survive the current month and move on to the next month.
The mentality of expecting instant gratification and the fear of setting goals or projections is one of the top reasons that make business owners struggle and adds to their stress.

Focussing on instant outcomes is natural. It’s because our brain naturally craves for instant gratification. Imagine this: I’m overweight, but I couldn’t resist eating two scoops of ice cream every day, yet I want to lose weight. In fact, I’m on a weight-loss program.
Yes, eating two scoops of Baskin Robbins Dulce de Leche is fun for me. Yeah, I’ll be instantly happy. But, my overall goal is to lose weight. That’s not going to happen soon if I keep eating those two scoops of ice cream.

Like the story about how curiosity killed the cat, here instant gratification will kill my overall goal. Back in 2015, I was overweight. It took me six months to lose 31 pounds (17 kilos), and it took a lot of hard work, persistence, and loads of patience.

Nothing in life is easy… If you have been a business owner, you would’ve understood that by now. Everything that is worthy requires hard work, a tonne of persistence, loads of patience, saying no to many things.

So, if you are one of the many business owners who decided to give up on online marketing; Keep working for another 31 years like the man in my story above did until you succeed. (I’m just kidding!)

My goal is not just to tell you what you are doing wrong. I also want to equip you with the right tools and actionable information to move forward and see results far quicker than if you tried to do it all by yourself.


The situation and the mindset of an entrepreneur who’s just starting out would be different. Their priority would be to figure out a way to bring in sales.

So they join networking groups, attend trade shows, they cold call, knock doors, etc.; they hustle. All the guessing, hoping, and tactics could work. It could work in the beginning when they are focused only on customer acquisition.

But to make it work in the long term and bring it to a consistent revenue while managing all of the fulfillment, customer service, changing government regulations, and taxes is an entirely another thing on its own.

When you want to scale your business, you need to learn to take a step back and think strategically and adapt proven ways to move forward. Also, you need to add more resources such as people, ads, and systems.

It’s called working on your business; instead of working in your business.

When you scale your business, you would have to create training, systems, checklists, and standard operating procedures that would help you effectively delegate the tasks to your employees. So that they won’t fail at the functions, they are supposed to do.

An essential aspect of the delegation process that many business owners miss out on is the need to have metrics, analytics, and tracking.

The third most significant reason why online marketing fails is that business owners don’t set up proper success objectives, i.e. they don’t track, understand, and set up the right metrics.

It’s unfortunate how often business owners and even some marketing consultants move forward and end up disappointed with their results because they ran online marketing campaigns without setting proper success objectives.

Now, I want to introduce you to five metrics that every business owner should track to set objectives for marketing campaigns, as well as have a pulse on their business growth and to spot problems instantly and to act on them before getting into chaotic situations.

With these five metrics, you can devise your marketing plan effectively. You will have articulated goals and a strategy for action. You’ll be able to track all the aspects that affect your business growth.

I created the Business Growth Metrics Pentagon for Tracking and Measuring Small Business Online Marketing. It’s adapted from a proven framework by Dave McLure from the Tech Startup world. Dave is the founder of the business accelerator 500 Startups and a popular angel investor in the San Francisco Bay Area.

One of Dan Kennedy’s rules to transforming your business into a marketing powerhouse is to track, measure, and account for every marketing effort.

When you track and measure your marketing objectives; even if you fail in a campaign, you’ll be able to learn and improve your next campaign.

A popular quote from Seneca, the Roman Stoic philosopher, says, “No wind blows in favor of a ship without a destination”.

So set yourself up for success in online marketing by setting up the right objectives, and then tracking and measuring them.

So what are these “objectives”?

For you to understand the objectives, you need to understand the five metrics that are part of the Business Growth Metrics Pentagon. They are:

  1. Attention
  2. Acquisition
  3. Revenue
  4. Retention
  5. Referral

Attention defines the number of unique people reached by your message, website, or advertising.

Acquisition defines the number of visitors who got converted into a lead.

Revenue defines the % sales conversion, the number of sales made from the acquired leads.

Retention defines the engagement level of the existing leads, and repeat sales made from existing customers.

Referral metric defines the number of leads referred by existing leads and customers.

To have a working online marketing system that pulls leads and sales, you need to pay attention to all these metrics. You need to create systems that improve each of these aspects of your business.

It is a very logical and predictable approach to take when you define these metrics for your business.

Example Scenario: Your lead acquisition rate is 10%, it means that for every 100 visitors to your landing page you’ll have 10 leads. And you have a 20% sales conversion rate. i.e. For every 10 leads, you’ll have 2 sales made.

Example Objective: Get 100 Sales

Now that you have these metrics available at your disposal, you could set an objective to get 100 sales.

And then reverse engineer that number of sales to the number of visitors you’d need to produce that amount of sales.

Since your sales conversion rate is 20%, you’ll need 500 leads to get 100 sales. And since your lead acquisition rate is 10%, you’ll need 5000 visitors to get 500 leads.

Then create a Facebook Ad, Google Ad, or any other form of advertising to get those 5000 visitors.

Without this level of clarity, you’d never get anywhere. That’s why tracking these numbers and being on top of them is very important for your business growth.

Example Objective: Increase Conversion Rate

You could hire a copywriter to improve the sales conversion rate and the lead acquisition rate; So that you can get the same amount of sales with fewer visitors.

Once you define these metrics, these metrics would take the heavy lifting and drive your business while you can sit back and lead your business as an entrepreneur and not as a business owner.

You’ll know where you should spend your money on and you’ll know what is broke and when it broke. And, you’ll also be able to figure out what kind of help you’d need to solve what’s broken.

What I’ve been teaching you is to do online marketing the most effective way without wasting your marketing dollars and without getting overwhelmed by the information and technology overload that most gurus and the tool marketers are selling you.

I almost forgot to tell you who’s the man from the story… It was Abraham Lincoln. Would you dare call him a failure?

He could have quit anywhere along the line. But to Lincoln, his failures were a deviation, a learning, and not a dead end.

So, again if you failed with online marketing before. I empathize with you.

Coz I’ve been there and I have failed before in not one but 5 different businesses because I didn’t know the right way to get leads and sales online. But then I figured it out. It worked out for me. It worked out for my clients who implemented the system.

What I’ve been teaching you is the lessons I learned from my failures, and the frameworks that I created for myself and my clients to succeed in their online marketing.

All you need to become a market leader and to get a ton of leads and sales online is to have these three things in place for your business:

  1. Create your Market Positioning Pentagon (Read Mistake #1 to learn more. Link is below…)
  2. Create your Marketing Funnel (Read Mistake #2 to learn more.)
  3. Set Campaign Goals, Track, Measure using the Business Growth Metrics Pentagon

That’s it. Nothing more nothing less.

@Ahmed Muzammil