Sales and marketing are two distinct functions within a business that more often than not, are confused with one another. Although both play critical roles in generating revenue and new leads, they serve different purposes and often have correlating yet distinctly different objectives.
These take many various shapes and forms within your organization, but at the end of the day sales and marketing are not the same thing.
What is Marketing?
Marketing, according to the Oxford Dictionary, is the activity or business of promoting and selling products or services, including market research and advertising.
But it is so much more than that too! Marketing covers everything from creating brand awareness to building relationships with potential clients and partners. And that is just the tip of the iceberg—there is also:
And the list goes on! These buckets of marketing work hand-in-hand to push out your consistent brand messaging.
Your marketing team’s goal should be to create a positive perception of the business with potential customers through storytelling and building trust. Those efforts should then produce new leads, aka the pipeline for your sales team.
An example of this is when you see a company has a social media page where they actively engage with potential and current customers to keep them informed and happy with the business.
What is Sales?
Sales, according to the Oxford Dictionary, is part of a company that deals directly with selling products to consumers or other businesses.
Sales are either a short-term or long-term process, depending on your sales cycle, that aims to close deals and generate revenue. The sales team is responsible for converting leads into customers and negotiating terms. The sales process is more focused on immediate sales and less on building relationships with customers, although, with a longer sales cycle, relationship building is crucial as well.
An example of this is when a company buys season tickets for their local sports team they likely have an account manager that moves swiftly to secure the best seats at the stadium for their budget and then occasionally checks in to ensure they are happy and want to buy again the following season.
Another key difference between sales and marketing is the skills required for each function.
Who to Hire For Each Role?
Marketing requires skills such as market research, data analysis, creativity, and communication. These professionals need to be able to identify customer needs and take those needs to develop messaging that resonates with them. They also need to be able to analyze data to track the effectiveness of their campaigns and make adjustments as necessary.
Sales, on the other hand, requires skills such as communication, persuasion, negotiation, and ultimately closing. These professionals need to be able to build relationships with customers, understand their needs, and persuade them to buy the products or services offered by the business based on the knowledge they have obtained.
As a Recap
Both of these departments are crucial to the success of your business. They can both be used to build relationships and generate new leads but in different ways. While there is some crossover between the two, they go more hand-in-hand than anything. Understanding the differences between sales and marketing can help you to develop more effective strategies for both functions.
As experts in the marketing field, we are happy to help answer any further questions you may have about taking your strategies to the next level. You can contact the GreenMellen team here!