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Program ResourcesMarketing vs. Advertising: What’s the Difference?

It may seem like advertising and marketing are two concepts that share exactly the same objective. In fact, they do have the same objective: alerting consumers to products and services being sold. Marketing and advertising have many things in common, but there are some differences. Comprehension of these differences and similarities will help any business or organization with their strategy for customer and audience acquisition.

What Is Marketing?

Marketing is a process that involves design, creation, research and data mining about how to best align the idea of a product or service with the target audience. Marketing helps to define the product even more than the actual product does.

How Do You Market?

Marketing involves research and analysis. This involves studying audience response and creating language and design that will best influence that audience. Certain groups of consumers respond better to images and words than others. Slogans and mission statements that best communicate the “message” of the product are essential to marketing. Marketing strategy can be broken down into the 4 P’s: product, place, price and promotion.

The message of a marketing campaign transmits what kind of people can use the product, what kind of environment best suits the product and other related information. The message is communicated through marketing materials, which create tone and personality of the product as well. Another aspect of market research is pricing and ways to distribute the product.

What Is Advertising?

Advertising is the literal process of making a product and service known to an audience. It is the description used to present the product, idea or service to the world. This generally entails advertising campaigns in the media. An advertising campaign uses creative positioning in the media. Advertising must be timely and used in a specifically strategic way.

How Do You Advertise?

Advertising gets the word out about a product or service. This involves creating a campaign that aligns with the wants and needs of the prospective audience. A great advertising campaign uses a mixture of media to best generate excitement for a product.

For example, if the product is geared toward a younger audience, then social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter might be the best way to reach that audience. Other consumer groups may respond better to radio, television or print ads. Most advertising campaigns use a combination of media to reach the widest audience possible.

What Are the Similarities Between Marketing and Advertising?

First of all, it’s important to note that advertising is a component of marketing. Marketing refers to preparing a product for the marketplace. Advertising is making your product and service known to an audience or marketplace. Advertising is a specific step of marketing. Advertising uses the data and research collected by marketing strategies to best communicate the brand.

Marketing is a more controlled and wider-reaching process, while advertising is specific to brand communication. In a way, marketing is both research and practice, while advertising is straight practice. Marketing involves consumer behavior and marketing research, while advertising involves creative endeavors like design and multimedia production.