Many people in India think that marketing and sales both are the same. They assume that marketing jobs are similar to sales jobs and thus don’t want to get into them. Lack of awareness and getting carried away by many misconceptions about the field is making many skilled graduates to lose good opportunities in the lucrative marketing field. Even most MBA graduates in marketing are not able to distinguish marketing from sales.
Marketing is entirely different from sales. Unlike in sales, which involves convincing the customer to buy a product, marketing involves analytical, creative and coordinating jobs that supports the growth and expansion of the company’s products/services.
Marketing is a critical companywide activity – not just a department
In the present competitive world, marketing is too important for every company. When a company does not have good marketing abilities, it will suffer. When a company is struggling, employees in all the positions will be negatively affected. So, protecting the marketing competitiveness of the company’s products/services is essential for career growth of every employee in the organization.
Marketing department – single-handedly takes some specialized responsibilities
Marketing department not only coordinates with other departments but also supports the top management in ensuring a competitive edge for the company’s products/services in the market place.
In addition, the marketing department does some specialized activities/projects that need skills that are specifically found in marketing professionals including copy writing, market research, graphic design, market analysis, and marketing projects’ coordination. Many times, the marketing department may outsource parts of the work to the third party agencies that support them with their services.
Essential difference in roles of marketing and sales professionals
Once a company has defined its marketing game plan and executed it, it needs sales people to discuss that individually with each potential customer. Due to the competitive offerings from multiple providers, the potential customer needs someone to clarify and explain the value of buying a certain product and service. This is where the sales and business development teams come in to play to help get more sales. Without the sales people, the potential customer may ignore a great product/service because of the lack of personal touch and someone to explain the features, advantages or benefits of that product.
Marketing jobs and their characteristics
Marketing jobs are typically not volume jobs. An interesting aspect of marketing jobs is that they provide wide variety of job profiles in the same department, but only few positions are of same type. Marketing departments tend to be smaller as compared to the overall size of the company. Marketing jobs are typically desk jobs and are mostly available at company’s headquarters.
Sales jobs and their characteristics
Sales positions pre-dominantly involve one activity that is persuading individual customers to agree to buy the products/services. It is to fulfil the demands created by the marketing team to reach the needs/wants of the customers. Sales job is to make sure that the customer purchases company’s products or services.
Sales jobs have large number of similar job profiles. The only difference is that they are spread across different geographical areas. It has mostly sales or persuasion jobs which are often located at all the branches of the company.
Sales is a process of gaining commitment to buy. The sales person tries to know the nature (mind-set) of the people or a company and tailor sales strategy accordingly to convince the customer to buy the product/service. Whatever product is offered by company the sales people need to find a way to persuade individual or other businesses to buy it.
This job is broadly categorized into sales, corporate sales and business development based on low value item to high value item, length of the time required to buy the product/service and the documentation that needs to be created by the sales person to enable the sale.
Marketing jobs vs. sales jobs
|Marketing jobs||Sales jobs|
|Creative, analytical or coordination jobs||Persuasion jobs|
|Headquarter jobs||Branch office jobs|
|Indirect activity – no direct interface with the customer||Direct activity – directly meet and discuss with potential customers|
|Many job profiles – wide variety of job profiles in same department, typically only few positions of same type (1-4)||Less job profiles – similar job profiles, multiple positions but in different cities, towns and district area|
|Mostly desk jobs||Mostly travelling jobs|
Though the differences are very substantial, a majority of people continue to see the two different job roles as the same. Worse, many people think that marketing job is a sales job. We hope, this article provides clarity on the essential differences between sales and marketing jobs.
You may also like to read:
- Marketing and Sales – Can a Person Do Both the Jobs?
- Marketing Mindset Vs. Sales Mindset
- Types of Marketing Jobs – Traditional, Digital & Industry Specific
- Entry Level Marketing Jobs
- Three Key Talents Required to do a Marketing Job