Sales and marketing, what’s the difference?
Of course, sales and marketing are two essential parts of a business. You can’t really have one without the other, and although they may seem similar on the surface, there’s a lot of differences that set the two apart, since they both impact the business in different ways. Let’s look at the proper definitions of sales and marketing.
According to hubspot.com, ‘sales’ is ‘a term that refers to all activities that lead to the selling of goods and services. Whereas marketing is the ‘process of getting people interested in the goods and services that are being sold’. So they are two different things, but what are the main differences, and how do they each impact your business? Let’s discuss this…
As I said earlier, sales is essentially all the steps taken up to and including the sale of your product or service, including things like pricing, negotiation, payment, and everything in between. Whilst you may think that marketing is the same thing, the difference is that marketing is the process of getting people interested in your product or services. It’s getting the buzz on social media about your business through advertisement, and various other marketing techniques.
Sales Techniques vs. Marketing Techniques…
The techniques used to make a sale and the techniques used to promote your products and spark interest definitely differ.
Some examples of sales techniques include…
- Active listening; listen to the potential buyers queries and concerns
- Create a rapport; find the common ground between you and the buyer
- Talk about the features and benefits; why they should want or need this product
- Offer practical reasons tailored to the buyer based on what they’ve told you
- Selling on social media; confirm a purchase over direct messaging or emails
Some examples of marketing techniques include…
- Content marketing; blogs, videos, infographics. Make it engaging,
- Social media/e-mail marketing
- Search engine optimization/SEO
- Paid advertisements
The different kind of sales techniques used to make a sale is dependent on the kind of person you’re talking to. Lets go back to active listening. Based on the information the customer gives you, and based on the kind of person that they are, you can choose the right technique. Whereas if we’re thinking marketing, your advertisements and promotional material are going to be seen by a huge range of people, not just a single customer. That’s why it’s so important for you to know your target audience. This way you can tailor your content and marketing towards the right demographics, which will then draw in the right people to agree to purchase your product or service.
Marketing is a much more general thing. Although like I said you have to aim for it to be engaging for your target audience and for your ideal client. It’s very different to engaging with a single customer who will potentially invest.
Once the interest is sparked through your marketing, if you get that initial interaction from a potential customer, it’s about beginning to build a rapport and a trust worthy buyer-seller relationship so they’re more likely to make the investment.
How do sales and marketing impact your business?
As I’m sure you know, the way that your business brings in money is through sales, and that’s a fact. This is when it’s so important to start thinking about the customer journey. Once you have that first peak of interest, as a business you need to engage with that person. The customer may buy off of you whether you make some kind of relationship with them or not. However they’re much more likely to if they have trust in you as a business.
Creating an initial common ground between you and the customer will also heighten the chances of repeat purchase in the future. People tend to go with companies they know well and are sure in their products or services. As well as the experience they have with you. So that initial engagement is so important for repeat purchase, and to also strengthen the chances of the customer recommending you to someone they know, and spreading the word about your business.
Marketing on the other hand impacts your business not necessarily in a completely different way, because it does help lead to sales; however it has a much more indirect impact on the money that comes into your business. Whereas the sales directly bring in revenue, the marketing is what starts the process of potentially getting more customers. Yes, marketing and promotion does have an impact on sales, it also has a huge impact on your online presence. The more engaging your marketing content and your advertisements, the more people are going to be drawn to your business. Through this more people are going to engage with your posts. And as I’m sure you know, the stronger online presence you have the stronger the chances of gaining many more potential customers.
The two go hand in hand…
So as you can see, both sales and marketing have got different impacts on your business, but as I said at the beginning, they go hand in hand. Without marketing, you’re not going to make a sale, and without a product or service to sell, you’ve got nothing to advertise or promote! Use this knowledge to really get clarity on the right techniques for your business and get those sales in.