Sunday, October 21, 2007

The Difference Between Marketing and Sales

There seems to be confusion in the business industry between what is marketing and what is sales. I have thrown my hat into a few arena's when I hear of a marketing position that is open only to find that what they really wanted is a sales consultant. I overheard one of my USANA colleagues on day tell someone they are in marketing. What she meant is that she is a consultant which involves sales. Agreed, when you are selling a product you are in turn doing some marketing and marketing may lead to sales but there is a distinct difference between the two and I hope to dissolve some of the confusion.

Sales: Sales is the position in which you are distinctly promoting a product or a service. Pay is often acheived based on a commission of the sale price. You can be on a salary but I have found that the reward comes from eating what you kill. You are out for the purpose of making a sale for your company.

Marketing: Now marketing on the other hand is usually done prior to the sales consultant doing their job. A marketer primary focus is to get word out about a product or a service and generate interest in that item. This is done through publicity, campaigns and advertising. The result of good marketing is sales but the goal is more to create a buzz.

The two work beautifully hand and hand together but are different. At times my job as a "marketer" does involve sales. But that is at the request of my employer and has a different set of circumstances applied. And I do sales for myself every day regarding the work that I do and how it can help a business.

So next time you look for one or the other, be precise on what your needs are. Sometimes you can find both with the same company but be sure to define what your business needs are. That will make it easier for you to get exactly what you are looking for.


S. Kumar said...


Good post.

One can say simply say that,

Sales is the point through an immediate process by which actual cash is exchanged between the buyer and seller.

Where as,

Marketing is the process by which way, means and strategies are drawn that ulitmately culminates in sales.

Courteously -- S. Kumar

Ivana said...

This is a terrific post! I share your view completerly. I like to say use the analogy of a butler holding a silver tray with all these goodies on it. The butler is the salesperson. What's on the tray - that's the offering and the marketing people? They're the chefs figuring out what to put on the tray that people will want to eat.