How is marketing different from advertising? [Marketing vs Advertising]

. 7 min read
How is marketing different from advertising? [Marketing vs Advertising]

Not differentiating between marketing and advertising often results in using the terms interchangeably, even though they have different meanings. They have a common objective of alerting consumers about the products and services available so that they can make informed purchases. A business can develop effective strategies to reach the right target audience and enhance the customer base when there is a proper understanding of the differences and similarities between the terms. So, it is important to understand these concepts well. Let us identify the differences and see how these can be used for taking a business to the next level.

Marketing: Definition and how is it done?

Research is conducted by marketers who mine data for finding opportunities to reach the right audience. Establishment of ideas is followed by product design and creation. Marketers guide the promotions by setting value propositions that form the selling point and define a product for consumers.

The marketing process involves in-depth research and analysis to understand the response of people to products and services. This forms the basis of the creation of promotional language and design elements for products. Companies even research the impact of language to ensure that the slogans and mission statement can be effective in selling the products.

Product, price, place, and promotion are part and parcel of the basic marketing strategies. The success of a product or service depends on its price and means of distribution. The way in which marketing messages are framed also plays a major role. Research helps in understanding the consumer type who is going to use the product, and the tone of the marketing message to ensure that the target audience perceives it in the right way.

Marketing and advertising start to overlap when messages are developed to bring the marketing strategies to life. Read on to know about advertising.

Advertising and how it is done?

Advertising is the way of making the target audience know a product or service. It involves presenting a brand’s ideas to the world in impactful ways. Offers, catchy phrases and creative positioning make the products more relatable to consumers.

Advertisement campaigns create excitement among the audience by using a  mix of media. Products meant for the younger target group are promoted on platforms like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and magazines, while those targeted at the elderly are more impactful when promoted through newspapers, radio, TV and similar mediums. Advertisers find the right combination for the target audience by experimenting with different media placements. This ensures that the campaigns perfectly align with consumer needs and wants.

Difference between Marketing and Advertising

The goal of marketing is the same as that of advertising, which is to make target customers be aware of your business. Here is the difference between the two:

i. Definition:


It deals with the activity of comprehending the marketing conditions for the identification of customer requirements. On this basis, products are created, which can be sold easily.


It forms the crucial part of the marketing communication process that intends to attract the attention of the public to the services and products.

ii. Scope and business aspects:


Product, Price, Place, People and Promotion are its various aspects. Its scope includes research, promotion, advertisement, sales, distribution, public relations and customer satisfaction.


Process forms its primary aspect. Scope of advertisement includes posting ads on TV, radio, magazines, newspapers, and social media, putting up posters/hoardings, and getting sponsorships.

iii. Duration and area of focus:


It is for a long-term duration. The focus is more on sales to create a market for a new product or current product and build the brand image.


It is for a short-term duration. The focus is mainly on creating awareness to grab the attention of the general public.

word advertising displaying on the laptop screen

Ways of advertising

Ads can be online and offline, depending on the target audience. The different ways include:

i. Banner ads:

These are often found on the top of the page or slider bar, visible to anyone visiting the website. For this, a certain amount is paid as rent to the website where you want to advertise. On clicking these ads, users will be taken to the product website or landing page.

ii. Ads on social media  channels:

This is the most popular advertising medium as most people are active on various social media channels like Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and so on. Thus these are the best ways of targeting specific customer groups by creating ads accordingly. Customers can be categorised based on various parameters such as income level, age, gender and specific interests.

iii. Billboards:

These are huge ads often found on highways or other such places in such a way that the target customers can easily see them. Driving brand recognition is their primary aim so that there is a spike in sales.

iv. Ads in magazines:

Though there are many digital magazines, the value of printed ones hasn’t yet been diminished. Many people who love reading these magazines are monthly subscribers. Advertisements in these magazines are the best medium for attracting a certain target group that reads them. Also, ads are the primary source of earning for magazines.

Ways of marketing

Here are the popular marketing strategies that companies can leverage for brand promotion:

i. Content marketing:

Today, content is king. So right from ebooks to blog posts, case studies and white papers, the need for the right content to connect with the audience is of paramount importance. Content can either be in the written word form or in the form of infographics to communicate something interestingly. Content should provide real value to customers to help brands get easy recognition. This will help in driving traffic to the website and enhancing revenue.

ii. Email marketing:

Emails are powerful tools, albeit, regular interaction with the audience is crucial for its effectiveness. Thoughtful and strategic email campaigns can play a significant role in driving sales through the utilisation of opportunities. Thank-you emails after a purchase, providing discount coupons, and sneak peeks of new products or services are some ways of effective email marketing. These help the audience remember the brand, which aids in driving the business and in creating a loyal customer base.

iii. Sales presentation:

This is essential when a business wants to get investors and close large deals. Content and visuals are important parts of building a sales presentation successfully. It should be impressive and interesting to keep the audience glued.

iv. Brochures:

These are the best way of presenting key marketing messages in a comprehensive manner to potential customers. Plenty of information and visuals can fit into a marketing brochure and it should be presented in a way which people don’t find boring. It should be impactful enough to convince potential customers to try the service or product.

v. Event flyers:

This is an old yet effective marketing strategy mainly for the promotion of an event and for getting the attention of the right audiences. The flyers need to be distributed in regions or events where the target customers are located to ensure success of the effort undertaken.

vi. Posting on social media:

Social media is a powerful tool and business organisations should keep posting relevant material about their products or services on these platforms, to establish a strong link with customers. When people find relatable content, they are convinced about trying the product and their good experience can spread far and wide through word of mouth. This would help drive up sales and boost the brand’s success.

Here are the differences between marketing and advertising, in a nutshell [Marketing vs Advertising]:



Marketing is about comprehending the customer needs to create a product which can sell itself.

This is just a part of the marketing process.

It is done on a long term basis.

It is a short-term phenomenon.

It enhances sales.

It creates awareness.

The focus is on creating a market for new products or existing ones. 

The focus is to attract the attention of potential customers.

Product, Price, Place, People, Promotion, and Process are its aspects.

Promotion is its only aspect.

Marketing Commercial Advertising Plan


If marketing is considered to be the whole pie then advertising is just a slice of the pie. So, a business which relies just on marketing misses out on a lot of opportunities for enhancing the brand, connecting with customers and increasing sales. After learning the differences between the two terms, we can say that advertising is marketing, but marketing is not advertising. This is vital knowledge to take your business to the next level.

We hope our article turned out to be useful for you. For more such informative content, you can visit these linked articles as well:
Difference between Pan, Tan and Tin Difference between Auditing and Accounting Difference between MSME and NSIC
Difference between Direct and Indirect Marketing Difference between Coaching and Mentoring Difference between E-Checks and Paper Checks

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Q. How can you make marketing campaigns fruitful?

Ans. Campaigns need to be tailored through research to meet the requirements of the specific population group in order to get a better outcome.

Q. What are the various ways of advertising and how is it different from the ways of marketing?

Ans. While the different ways of advertising include posting ads on social media, billboards and magazines, marketing is done through the use of relevant content, presentation, emails, event flyers, and brochures.

Q. How can you prevent the audience from simply scrolling past social media content?

Ans. Social media content need not only be informative but also eye-catching so that people don’t just scroll past them.

Q. Are event flyers of any importance to online audiences?

Ans. Yes, sharing the flyer's digital image on social media channels or websites can attract more customers who are generally online.