Friday, January 19, 2007

Sales vs. Marketing

The most familiar question for any placement interview in MBA (mainly for marketing) is, tell me the difference between marketing and sales?” I too have also faced the same. To be frank there is no standard answer as such. I am continuously searching for the right answer but the search is still on. I have attended some seminars in my company where I got some response on this which I have included here and I have some own opinion on this that also I have kept. As I have already told there is no standard answer… can make your own or can create by mixing some phrases.

Typically “sales” cannot exceed revenue objectives without an effective marketing planning and support and “marketing” directives ultimately becomes useless without sales to implement the plan.

Let me try my own line…..

Marketing is figuring out what the customer needs / is going to need / latent need etc, and finding a way to satisfy the need and make a profit doing it, while Sales, a function within marketing, is responsible for managing the customer interface and making sure it's easy for the customer to get the product/service and pay for it.


Marketing is the effort of mainly creating and finding the needs and wants of the consumers and then to satisfy those needs...But, Sales is only a part of marketing which aims towards making the products being in the customers hands.

Those above two discussions I have submitted to website and is already uploaded and I am getting good response on this. Ok….still if you are not satisfied let me quote some of the discussion abstract on this topic here.

Discussion – 1:

Many people mistakenly think that selling and marketing are the same - they aren't. You might already know that the marketing process is broad and includes all of the following:

  1. Discovering what product, service or idea customers want.
  2. Producing a product with the appropriate features and quality.
  3. Pricing the product correctly.
  4. Promoting the product; spreading the word about why customers should buy it.
  5. Selling and delivering the product into the hands of the customer.

Selling is one activity of the entire marketing process which is nothing but the act of persuading or influencing a customer to buy (actually exchange something of value for) a product or service.

Marketing activities support sales efforts. Actually, they are usually the most significant force in stimulating sales. Oftentimes, marketing activities (like the production of marketing materials and catchy packaging) must occur before a sale can be made; they sometimes follow the sale as well, to pave the way for future sales and referrals.

Discussion – 2:

Sales is what you do when you are one on one with a prospect. Sales is the scripts you say, the techniques you use to drive home a point or persuade a person to write an offer or to sign a listing contract. You read a prospect’s buying signs, then adjust your response to the prospect and the situation.

Marketing is what you do to attract prospects before you meet them face-to-face. Marketing is stimulating a prospect’s interest and desire so that they what to buy in the first place. Personal marketing is not only stimulating interest, it is doing it in a way that makes the prospect want to buy through you. Great personal marketing creates a steady flow of people who are interested in working with you, so that when they call you they are already predisposed to working with you.

The key difference you must understand is this: what makes a great one-on-one sales presentation is not the same thing you can use to make great marketing materials.

Discussion – 3:

Marketing is a platform on which sales are driven, combing to reap profits for the organization.

Discussion – 4:

Marketing is a circular process where sales is a part of it .Marketing is Knowing the need of the client and can be said as customer based process. Where as sales is a company based process where the end result is getting money from client for the product.

Discussion – 5:

While marketing is about identifying and satisfying a customer's needs, sales is all about fulfilling these needs that have been created. The difference between a sales plan and marketing plan is that while sales plans are about selling the good and services that a business has to offer, marketing plans help to create the need that will ultimately stimulate the sale.

I hope you are bit clear now and can understand that there is no standard answer for this. If possible do read this and search some good books and frame your own definition. If you are getting a new view regarding this ….please do mail me.

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mrktg said...

A lot of new small business entrepreneurs feel that they are too busy with their work that joining organizations is but a waste of time. If you are one of those entrepreneurs who cannot be bothered about joining small business organizations, you need to revise your opinion fast. There are many benefits that you can derive from joining these small business outfits. In seminars for marketing they provide information related to small business.

Anonymous said...

Instead of putting so much energy in splitting the hairs of closing a deal through marketing and sales, I think you should reach further into process and understand that the real value to the user is the design of the product and or service being offered. Time invested in design and research related to these activities is a better investment that works to provide the end receiving party with value they can use. The public is tired of being targeted as a demographic, as a number, and persuaded through emotional appeals. The design process is more aligned with sales than marketing… in that these two functions seek to connect with real people with real needs… not a pile of numbers.

Give humans some credit, they can understand the value of a good product or service in comparison to other offerings with hype, seduction, advertising, etc. Let hear about investments in design as way to drive entrepreneurial efforts.

tony said...

However good your product or sales may be, it will remain in your factory or warehouse, if people are not informed of the supeiority of your product over the others. To make them change their habits, and make them to switch to buying your product, you have to go to them, speak with them, understand their problems and requirements, and your product should solve their problems. Your product should be announced to the target customers, advertised, and using samples, and public demonstrations, your products should be introduced into the market. Depending on the requirements of each area, sufficient quantities of your products should be made available, through distributors with sufficient number of godowns, show rooms, and trained sales staff.
Imlementing all the above is Marketing

Alex Agase said...

Yes sale and marketing are two different things, you can not be the same. Selling is directly related to market process, In selling you always convince customers to buy different products. But on the other hand Marketing is the thing which support your selling products. Its about how you convince your customers to buy your product. Anyhow its worth to read the whole article. But I want to ask one thing, what is difference between Marketing and Advertising? They are the same thing or different? Can you please convey your point of view about Marketing and Advertising?
Well If you are a dentist must visit this link Online Marketing For Dentists, its may helps you.