Marketing Vs Sales
Marketing and sales have always been misconstrued, even by their practitioners. Why has this been so? I believe that it is partly so because the fast-paced and ever-changing market space is constantly blurring the line of differentiation. The difference between marketing and sales can be likened to the difference between a vision statement and a mission statement. Just as the vision statement drives the mission statement so also does marketing drives sales. I will try to throw some light on the differences in this article and hope that it will be more visible to you. The differences and similarities between marketing and sales are from the activities and expectations of the two duties and functions within the organization.
Take marketing as the whole picture. Marketing involves identifying, meeting, and surpassing customers’ needs and expectations at a profit while sales is the actual action employed when convincing and canvassing people to buy your products and services. Sales can be achieved through direct contact with customers, through the sales personnel on the field, or in your offices depending on your distribution channels. Sales can also be generated through advertising, promotion, and cold calls. All these activities wound up together in what is called marketing.
Marketing precedes sales and if your marketing is faulty chances are that your sales will be sloppy. When you position your products and services and locate your business offices strategically to get close to your customers’ reach, you are carrying out marketing activities. When you engage prospects in cold calls and visit customers or use direct mail services, and send brochures and catalogs you are trying to make sales hoping that the whole marketing activities will eventually help generate sales. This is the symbiotic nature of marketing and sales. In today’s business, understanding the customer, market environment, and government regulations amongst other things can help sharpen your marketing activities. While no business survives without sales, it is important to note that marketing will lead to product development and sales will lead to revenue generation. It is also important to note that your sales team can make great inputs into your marketing activities, mostly by bringing back feedback to the organization as they are constantly in touch with the customers.
This is why every business must employ competent sales personnel that can understand and interpret marketing plans to enable them successfully drive sales activities. Market planners must ensure that the sales team is involved in developing marketing plans for developing new products and reviving existing products. Despite the seeming blurring of the functions of marketers and salespeople in today’s business climate, it is important to note that they are entirely different responsibilities, though both roles can be played together. Selling is the last thing done after the products have been made available. Marketing is the first thing to be done before actual, selling takes place. This calls for you to get your marketing right and you can rest assured that your sales team will bring in revenues that will make you go smiling to the bank. I see you on top of your riches.