What Is The Difference Between Sales And Marketing?

There is an important distinction.
Successful businesses know how to use both.

Selling is interpersonal, one-on-one human communication. It includes telephone calls, networking, and face-to face meetings between you (or your sales staff) and your clients and prospective customers.

Marketing is developing various programs designed to reach out to and persuade prospects to raise their hands and say, “I’m interested in what you have to offer.” Marketing includes public relations (PR), advertising, direct mail, e-mail, and more. Marketing efforts are designed to target a specific group of people who have a need for your products or services.

Your efforts will educate these prospective customers about the features and benefits of what you have to offer and move them toward taking action — usually (but not always) making a purchase.

Salesmanship takes over after your marketing does its job. The job of sales could be handled by your clerk at the counter, or by customer service on the telephone, or through a face-to-face sales call to your prospect’s office. Closing some sales may require several contacts with the prospect. These contacts could include a marketing effort or a combination of marketing and an interpersonal sales call. Others sales are simple to close: just send one marketing message or make one personal sales call and it’s done. Sold.

“Selling is often considered a necessary evil.
As I see it, sales is a necessary profession in any free society.
It’s one of the noblest professions. Indeed, no free market system is possible unless goods and services are sold effectively.”

- Ted Nicholas

Building a successful business takes the combination of marketing and sales efforts working together to reach out and persuade people to buy your products and services on an ongoing basis.

For example: You receive a letter or postcard mailing from your local phone company with some strong offer (marketing effort). A week later, you get a phone call from one of their sales reps asking about the mailer, offering to answer any questions that you might have about it, and trying to close the sale (salesmanship). This is marketing and sales working together in a coordinated way.

How do you handle your marketing and sales efforts?

Is your plan in place?

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