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Which is better – Sales or Marketing?

By May 8, 2012 Marketing, Selling No Comments

I have a long standing “friendly discussion” with a sales coach about whether “sales” can stand alone without “marketing”, and vice versa.

The two often get lumped together – as in “sales and marketing”. When I first started working in Marketing, the Sales Department and the Marketing Department of an organisation were often on separate floors, and generally didn’t speak! In fact, in my first job, the marketing department was on the 5th floor of a building in Canary Wharf, whilst the sales department was actually the sales force, who were spread around the entire country!

These days, businesses are bit more forward thinking and the two departments work alongside each other.

The two disciplines bring a different skill to business, but the desired outcome is generally the same (ie to increase the amount of the right kind of customers buying more of your product or service).

The job of marketing is to identify the right kind of people who raise their hands in interest in what you have to sell them. It is also to find out what they need so that you can sell them the right product or service in the first place.

The job of sales is to help that person to buy and to create the actual financial exchange: someone receives your product or service in exchange for giving you money. OK, it could be something other than money, for instance in a bartering situation, but if you want a successful business then profit is king, and so money it has to be!

Yes, you can sell without doing any marketing.

And, no, there’s no point in doing any marketing if you’re not actually going to sell anything.

But when you align your marketing AND your sales, you get a powerful combination.

You see, marketing makes the job of your sales department a whole lot easier by driving them the right kind of people who are already interested in buying.

And if they’re not ready to buy right now, then the job of both marketing and sales is to build a relationship with that prospective customer until they ARE ready to buy.

If they DO buy now, then the job of both marketing and sales is to keep that relationship warm and cosy so that your customer continues to buy from you, and not wander off to your competitors.

These days, in an age of automation, processes and systems, it is worth remembering that it is relationships that are key to a successful business, and both “marketing” and “sales” have the natural ability to do just that.

“Marketing” and “Sales” are just two sides of the same coin; neither is more important than the other – they are both as important AS each other, and both vital in providing the life blood to your business.

So, when you have your “Sales & Marketing” hat on in your business (actually, any hat come to that), keep in mind that there are two different jobs to do, but the key to success in both is to build those successful relationships.

Have a great week!
Dedicated to your success,

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