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Difference between Marketing and Selling

Update on 2024-04-15

Difference Between Marketing and Selling - Marketing Vs Selling

Difference Between Marketing and Selling: Marketing and Selling are two very common terms we all have heard many times in our day-to-day life. Many people often confuse these two terms as having the same meaning but do these two words mean the same thing? Is there any difference between Marketing and Selling? So the answer is Yes, Marketing and Selling are as different as a Sales Person and a Marketing Manager. Through this article, you can learn the major difference between Marketing and Selling and what makes them inter-related to each other.

Marketing and Selling both are two interrelated yet different concepts of Business. Marketing is a much broader concept as compared to selling. In simple words, Selling means providing the customer with any particular service or product in exchange for money. On the other hand, marketing is a long process in which goods and services are produced, advertised, and transferred to the potential market from where it is sold to the consumers.

 It is a process where the need is created and then fulfilled by the products or services. Selling is like a barter system where the seller offers the product to the buyer in exchange for a listed price, Selling is an action taken only after the production of the product or service whereas the Marketing process starts way before the product is manufactured or produced. Marketing emphasizes the customer's needs, demands, and satisfaction.

Most organizations spend a fortune on their marketing and branding to understand their customers’ needs and demands and improve their products to satisfy their consumers’ expectations and needs. Selling is just a subset of Marketing, Selling always comes after Marketing, but yes it is an agreeable argument that the success of any product is service is determined by its selling rate/Consumption rate but for the success of any product or service, it is very important to have a good marketing plan, The marketing plan of the organization/brand/service determines the reputation of your product in the market which will affect the selling and consumption of the product or service.

Marketing focuses on innovation in existing technology and offers better products/services to the consumer by adapting an advanced technology, Selling involves staying with the existing technology and reducing any unnecessary expenses as selling could be done using outdated or traditional mediums.

Marketing is a step by step process which starts from Market Research and proceeds as follows:

Step 1: Market Research

Step 2: Product Planning and Development

Step 3: Pricing of the product/service

Step 4: Advertising and Promotion

Step 5: Distribution of the Product/service

Step 6: Selling

Step 7: Consumption

On the contrary, Selling Doesn’t involve any certain planning or procedure. It is a process followed after Marketing, delivering the product to its potential consumer is what exactly selling is. Always remember that a good marketing strategy results in the growth of the entire brand or organization, while selling intends to grow the seller party only.

Let’s take an example- A Cell Phone company designed a cellphone with all the advanced features in it, the cellphone involves excellent features such as good RAM, High Pixel camera quality, long-lasting battery backup, and a wireless charger. The exceptional feature in the cellphone is having a “wireless charger”, the marketing team focussed on that particular exceptional feature, created a need for the wireless charger, and targeted its potential customers through advertisements.  All these things were done before even launching the cellphone in the market.

This is how marketing works, analyzing the market, figuring out the need of the consumer, bringing up something new and advanced featured products or services, and telling the potential consumers that they actually “need” it by using advertisement as a key tool.

Through the above example, you can understand that sometimes marketing also means Creating hype. Marketing is important for selling your product to the masses and to your targeted customers.

Marketing v/s Selling

Marketing Selling
Marketing emphasizes consumers’ needs and demands. It aims to satisfy the consumers. Selling is all about the Seller and meeting the seller’s needs.
The customer is the initial link of business here, all the strategies, planning, production, and pricing are done while keeping the consumer behavior in mind. The consumer is the last link in the business here.
Customer Satisfaction is the Primary objective Sales are the primary objective
It involves External Market Analysis and Orientation It Involves Internal Organisational Orientation.
Analyzing and Conceptual skills are required Communication and convincing skills are required
It involves finding, producing, and designing the right products for consumers It involves finding the right consumers for your product.
Emphasizes converting consumer demands/needs into the products Emphasizes on converting the “products” into “money”
Marketing is a broader concept that involves many operations such as market research, analysis, strategy development, product designing, promoting, etc. Selling is another subset of Marketing, in other words, selling is the part of marketing.
Marketing can mean selling the product/service Selling a product/service can never mean  marketing the product
Marketing costs a lot. Selling doesn’t cost as such.
Usually, Marketing has a matrix type of organizational  structure Selling has a functional type structure
Marketing starts even before the production/Manufacture of the product. Selling starts after the production of the product
It is always about knowing about consumer needs. It is more about knowing your product.


Hence we can conclude that Sales and Marketing are different yet correlated terms in Business Development. Please note that in some organizations there are separate departments of marketing and Sales. While most organization sales teams come under the marketing department. Both Sales team and Marketing teams work together to create a sustainable business for their organization. So, Marketing and Selling are very crucial for the growth of the organization or brand.

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