Marketing and Advertising

Marketing and Advertising, although they may sound similar, are not. Advertising is only a part of the bigger game called Marketing. Marketing encompasses complete conceptualization of a brand right from the initial research, to designing, to advertising, to sale. Advertising, on the other hand, is a component of the marketing process which is nothing but conveying your message through a variety of mediums to promote a product or service.

Advertising is one of the most important components of a marketing strategy and also the most expensive. Advertising entails getting a message across to the public about your company, product or services. It also constitutes behind the scenes work like the process involving formation of various strategies and coming up with a right one to target your demographic. These strategies consist of planning things like placing ads, deciding what media to use, what time, frequency and more. The advertisements are generally placed via mediums like television, snail mail, newspapers, internet, emails, radio, magazines, mobile messaging, fliers, billboards etc. The most popular one is of course television although advertising on internet is becoming increasingly popular by the day and is projected to overtake television in the future.

An easy way to differentiate advertising from marketing is to consider marketing as a cake, and if you cut the cake, advertising as one of the pieces of that cake. The other pieces of cake are market research of the product, product designing, media planning, PR, product pricing, customer satisfaction, customer support, sales and many more. All these components, or pieces of cake, should work independently but collectively in achieving the bigger goal (i.e. sell product and build company’s reputation in the market). Marketing is a marathon process involving many tasks that involve hours sometimes days of research. The research part of marketing takes the longest as it involves thoroughly understanding the behavior of people towards a product. Designing the product and developing advertising strategy is also a time consuming process. Only components that take less time are executing advertisements and sales. Marketing can also be perceived as a medium between consumers and the company.

But many companies often make the mistake of confusing advertising with marketing. They try to emulate big companies like Coke and Pepsi in advertising but they simply ignore the work that goes behind that. Consider logo design for instance. Many business owners are so hysterical about the logo of their company in their advertisements that they think that, if it’s “good”, it will simply bring in the sales – all by itself! But what makes a logo work is none other than the reputation of the company. The logo must truly reflect the company’s values. One should also remember that these companies spend fortunes on advertising which a new start up business can’t. Rather than spending unnecessary money on branding your product, one should invest money and time in communicating to the consumers that you can address their expectations. After building a good reputation, and growing to a large company, one can then pursue these expensive ideas. Educating the consumers also helps as it will give them an understanding that you know what you do and are the best provider of what you do.

Smart marketers are aggressive in their approach rather than passive. They evoke a call to action by prompting buyers to do something, rather than just making them knowledgeable about the product or service they are advertising.

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