The big difference: what is the difference between marketing and advertising


If you think marketing and advertising are the same thing, you have no business. Without knowing the basic terms, you won’t be able to understand what the experts are telling you, how they work, and what they’re charging you for. Misunderstanding will hamper the promotion of goods and services in the market and, accordingly, will have a negative impact on the success of your business.

In today’s article I would like to dot all the i’s and cross all the t’s – to understand the difference between marketing and advertising and whether they have something in common.

What is the difference between marketing and advertising today

Digital professionals – copywriters, marketers, PR and seo-specialists – know the terminology.

Among entrepreneurs, there are few ignorant ones. People who do business on a whim go bankrupt within 2-3 years of launching a company. The rest have to constantly engage in self-development and delve into the intricacies of the chosen field of activity.

To get a sense of the difference between marketing and advertising, let’s run through the definitions of these terms. Marketing has hundreds of them. Let me give you an example of the most memorable ones.

What is Marketing

American marketer Jack Trout compared marketing to a movie in which the main character is the product. A less romantic definition of marketing was given by Mark Burgess, managing partner of Blue Focus Marketing, calling it the profitable transformation of customer needs into revenue.

Companies that chase solely profit without considering the needs of customers are negative.
The most accurate definition of modern marketing, in my opinion, was given by Renee Blodgett, founder and CEO of Magic Sauce Media. She calls marketing a sustained communication with potential customers. Through this interaction, the company educates and informs consumers, building strong trusting relationships. Customers become fans of the brand as they get exactly what they want most.

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The main goal of marketing is to make the product or service sell itself. It can be achieved through research, analysis and evaluation of the needs of potential buyers, the state and development of the market.

What is Advertising

Advertising is one of the areas of marketing. It has fewer definitions.

In other words, advertising can be called one of the tools of marketing, which helps to stimulate sales. It is incorrect to compare or contrast the two concepts. It is like asking, “Which is better: your body or your hand?

The difference between advertising and marketing

It’s better to learn new things from simple and clear examples. Let’s look at what marketers and advertisers do to determine the difference between marketing and advertising.

Who is a marketer and what does he do?

A marketer is a specialist who helps companies to market the company’s goods and services, to increase profits. Most of the time this person is engaged in research – market, competitors, assortment, needs and desires of potential buyers. Based on the data obtained, the marketer puts forward hypotheses that should have a positive effect on the brand and increase sales. All hypotheses are necessarily tested in practice.

In large companies, several specialists are involved in marketing. Among them are analysts, brand managers, and marketing communications specialists.
Marketers promote products and services both offline and online. Specialists who conduct activities online are called Internet marketers. The goals and objectives are the same, but the tools are different. For example, a marketer may poll consumers at the point of sale to gauge customer attitudes toward a brand, while an online marketer will create surveys in public forums or send questionnaire letters through an email database for the same purpose. Some of the routine work is assigned to other workers, such as PR people, managers, or advertising specialists.

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What advertising specialists do?

Ideally, an advertising specialist deals only with advertising. He helps companies stimulate sales, so all questions about spending the advertising budget and the number of sales are addressed to him. Under the guidance of this specialist, designers and copywriters create the creatives that will be shown to potential customers.

Specialists who are engaged in online advertising often do everything themselves: they write ad texts, create graphics for banners, launch campaigns and report on the results.
Usually a specialist in advertising is subordinate to the marketer, because he is responsible for implementing the marketing strategy of the company. Marketing Manager determines the best channels to advertise the goods and services of the organization, which budget is appropriate to allocate to the promotion and the results should be guided.

Substitution of notions

Quite often business owners who are looking for a specialist in promotion, do not know exactly who they need – a marketer or a specialist in advertising.

A company is looking for a marketer, and the list of requirements lists the duties of an outdoor advertising specialist. Another employer wants to fill four positions at once: marketer, SMM-specialist, copywriter and PR-specialist.

If you are looking for work on job sites, read the descriptions carefully. It is quite possible that instead of a marketer, the company needs a specialist in SMM, and a director after a couple of months of work will have the responsibilities of a marketer.


Advertising – this is only part of the puzzle called “marketing”. It can exist separately, but to evaluate its effectiveness without taking into account other elements is impossible. Similarly, marketing will not last long without advertising, because it is one of the tools that helps to win back part of the market and stimulate sales.

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