The Relationship Between Sales and Marketing

Understanding the Difference and Why it Matters to Your Business





Strategic Marketing Plan

Interestingly many people still in general conversation use the words Sales and Marketing interchangeably despite the fact that they are clearly not the same thing. When we consider this fact is it that surprising that official census data confirms that around 80% of all start-up ventures fail within the first five years of operation, where in most cases it is not a lack of technical or functional skill as the root cause but rather a lack of marketing and sales ability to adequately promote the business to a specified target market.

Specifically from an academic perspective, marketing is the broad range of business skills and activities that drive the positioning and commercialisation of a product and are embodied in Professor McCarthy?s world famous term: ?The 4 P?s?. Namely: Product, Promotion, Price and Place. Sales on the other hand is simply a component or subset of the Promotion P, along with Advertising, PR, Social Media and Sales Promotion.

But in more fundamental terms, ?marketing is where you have something that you want to sell that people want, whereas selling is where you have something that you want to sell that people may or may not want. In other words marketing is a process whereby you are able to confirm the demand for something before you begin manufacturing or buying in the product, whereas a sales approach assumes the demand for that product is there in the marketplace, which in many cases is not present in a form or quantity believed to be present.

This module discusses this difference in great detail and set the foundation for many of the concepts that will build throughout the seminar series to establish the need for a full an comprehensive marketing planning process for any business.

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