“I honestly believe that marketing is the most fun you can have with your clothes on.” – Stewart Leahy (Yorkshire Powerhouse)
Marketing and Selling are close bed fellows and should remain as such. The easiest way to understand the different between the two is to consider selling as ‘pushing’ and marketing as ‘pulling’.
Selling: Selling can be really difficult and requires direct contact with the customer. The goal is often a ‘numbers game’ based on pushing the sales message to likely targets with the hope that the sales message will hit home and you’ll make a sale.
Marketing: Marketing is a much more complicated and scientific process. It should always start with a thorough understanding of the end client – their needs, challenges, opportunities, etc. Once you understand your customer then you can allow this to define your branding and core message (your point of difference or unique selling point) to ensure that this resonates with the target client. Finally, you need to then ensure you understand where and when your target client goes to find a solution to their problem … there’s no point you being all over Twitter if your client isn’t a Twitter user! The end goal is to ensure that your target clients ‘discover’ the perfect message from you at ‘just the right time’ and that it ‘pulls’ them to you as a result.
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One core part of marketing is the measurement of success. There’s no point spending time using social media to market your business if it doesn’t produce sales in the end – you need to ensure that your efforts are being rewarded by sales or you’re simply being a busy fool!
The ‘channels of communication’ you use can include traditional or digital, print or radio; the challenge is to know the customer, make great decisions and stay the course with a message that connects.
Remember that most business models require ‘marketing’ to make the noise and identify the prospects and then ‘selling’ to close the deals.
Ensure the channels through which you communicate is the one your customers use, not the one you prefer yourself. Always seek expert advice to make sure your efforts look professional and trustworthy.