Sales vs. Marketing Mystery —DeWese
IF IT’S about “sales” or “marketing,” I want to make sure you get it here first. It’s important to me because this column is named “DeWese on Sales.” Sometimes, however, I write about marketing and, like many other people in our printing industry, I am at least semi-confused about the difference between sales and marketing.
It has always been my position that “marketing” is a series of activities, like advertising, public relations, publicity, market research, etc., that includes “selling.” I have always believed and espoused in this column that good marketing is aimed at facilitating the selling function. Furthermore, since many printing companies have no formal marketing program, I have encouraged print salespeople to be their own marketing departments.
Since I am confused, I figure I can write just about anything, and my readers who are similarly perplexed won’t know the difference. I think I’m confused because marketing consultants have made the whole marketing exercise so exotic (or should it be esoteric?) that only they understand it and, as a consequence, the rest of us poor mortals are at their mercy.
I intend to clear up the mystery about marketing and sales before this column ends, and then we can get on with our lives.
Newest New Definition
A press release from the American Marketing Association (AMA) earlier this year provides a redefinition of “marketing.” It turns out that the AMA selects a committee to rewrite the definition every five years, whether it needs it or not. The nine-member committee that created the newest definition in 2007 included six university educators, one person from the AMA, one from a research firm and one from an automobile manufacturer.
The new definition was released on January 14, 2008, and, darn it, I missed it. The press release read: “One of the most important changes to American Marketing Association’s new definition for marketing is that marketing is presented as a broader activity,” says Nancy Costopulos, chief marketing officer of the AMA. Ms. Costopulos continued, “Marketing is no longer a function—it is an educational process.”