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  • Writer's pictureMcCafferty Advertising

So, what's the difference between marketing and advertising anyway?

Marketing and advertising are often misunderstood to be the same thing. There are similarities and we often see cross-over functionality between the two, but it’s important to know the difference.

Advertising is more functional than marketing. Marketing is a more holistic approach to your company than advertising. Advertising looks at a particular part of your business like a product or a service and seeks to promote it to the right audience in the right place at the right time with the right message. Marketing determines who the audience is, where audience can be found and what types of messages will resonate with buyers.

You see good marketing looks at your entire business. It takes a deep dive into your customer-facing processes, communications and promotions and helps to identify problem areas and suggests strategies and tactics for improving them.

I have worked with companies in the past where doing a full evaluation of a customer’s experience has uncovered serious issues in the most unexpected places. Sometimes it’s the little things. You may have run an excellent campaign for your product or service with a call to action that asks potential customers to call your business to connect with sales, but that phone might not be answered promptly. If it is answered customers may not connect with resources easily.

When you are considering outside help with your company’s promotional activities, some of the differences between marketing and advertising become important in your decision-making. If you are looking for someone to just come up with ideas for ads, electronic communications etcetera, but you feel like you have all of the thought and direction already in place, then a pure advertising resource may be right for you.

What does your business look like to customers when they walk through the door? Does their experience throughout the process of working with you meet and exceed the expectations of your promotional promises? Are there points in the sales process that could be refined or barriers that could be removed that will result in a faster sale? Is your company proactive in dealing with objections or poor reviews, or do you just wait for them to happen and then react?

A good partner well versed in marketing will approach your business with this kind of holistic approach. As a marketing consultant, it makes me cringe when the occasional new client asks us to, “just develop some ads that will work” feeling that there is no need for research or for getting a full understanding of their business and their audience. There are ad agencies that will take this kind of work, but to me this approach is just like throwing a rock in a dark room. You may hit something you intended to hit, but you’re more likely to miss. Good marketing turns the lights on in the dark room so you can see exactly what you’re aiming at.

If you’re a business owner or marketing professional, we should get to know each other. My methods for creating decades of successful marketing campaigns could be critical in your efforts to attract new customers and to drive new business. Get the book today; How to build marketing campaigns that get results and drive growth. Use this link GET YOUR FREE COPY


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