I was recently asked by a new client, What is the difference between Marketing and Advertising?
Well this may seem like a simple question to some, it’s actually a fairly common one. To me, there are no simple questions I always take pride in trying to educate (even potential) clients, to help them up their marketing game.
So for anyone who has wondered but never asked, here is your Marketing 101 for the day, The difference between marketing and advertising:
Advertising is merely a component of marketing because marketing is defined as the planning, execution, control, and analysis of various business activities that are meant to bring together buyers and sellers. These business activities include advertising as well as many other components like branding, direct sales, market research, public relations, and community involvement. There are many other components of marketing but these are ones that are most relevant to my clients.
To further wrap your head around this, here is a definition of each of those marketing components:
Advertising: A sponsored message from producers to consumers in order to persuade buying activity. Advertising is communicated across media such as TV, radio, newspaper, magazine, outdoor, direct mail, online, or on a mobile device.
Brand: is the identity of a specific company or product. A “Brand Identity” refers directly to the symbols, colors, sounds, imagery, and even thoughts and feelings that are associated with a particular brand. You as an artist can think of your brand identity as your style, subject choice, medium, and even your signature. Later on I am going to talk about how to build your brand in more depth.
Direct Sales: Any form of face-to-face solicitation. Example: Public art exhibit; you’re not just talking to people, you are selling yourself. Later on I will talk more about the dos and don’ts of direct sales.
Market Research: is an objective collection and analysis of data about a particular target market, competition, and/or environment. The purpose of any market research project is to achieve an increased understanding of the subject matter. As an entrepreneur or small business owner, simple forms of market research can be conducted through surveys or by simply speaking to the public or customers about your product.
Public Relations: refers to the actions of a corporation, government, individual, etc., in promoting goodwill between itself and the public, the community, employees, customers, etc. Artists are often contributing to charitable causes or community organizations through participation and donation and these are forms of public relations. Basically any new person you meet is an act of Public Relations, so don’t forget to give them a business card.
Community Involvement: is similar to public relations, however, the key difference is leadership. By actively engaging members of your community and leading the charge to promote a local event, charity, organization or an exhibit, you are taking pr one step further to community involvement.
So, as I’ve said before, one of our goals is to change the marketing landscape with small businesses and that begins with education. So if your business doesn’t have one, consider writing a marketing plan. You need to think of every decision that you make, from where you show your ads to the look of your website and business cards and your participation in community events as part of your overall marketing plan instead of just buying a single print ad. You might already be doing these things with your business but it’s good to be able to apply these terms to your actions in order to understand the value of your marketing. And with a little creativity, who knows where that will take you.