At the beginning of my marketing career, I was confused about being hired to write ads or create ad materials.
Since I accidentally fell into this industry (how to do it) I didn’t study marketing in school. I didn’t realize that advertising and marketing work together and are not mutually exclusive.
As a marketing professional, you understand that now. But that doesn’t mean you were never unsure how these two industries interact.
Indeed, marketing and advertising have a lot in common. In fact, they have the same goal: to raise awareness of your company and your products, and then make a sale.
While they share the same goal and have a lot in common, there are differences between marketing and advertising that can help you organize your strategy and maximize your acquisition efforts.
Let’s examine the similarities and differences between marketing and advertising below.
Marketing vs. Advertising
Marketing is a way of identifying your customers’ needs, defining your product, choosing the best point of sale, determining the best price, and promoting it so that people become aware of your company and its products / services. Advertising, on the other hand, is the process of using paid media to tell an audience about a product, what it does and how it can help them. In the end, advertising is just one part of marketing.
Overall, marketing and advertising have the same goal. However, marketing has a larger scope than advertising. Marketing creates the tone, personality and voice of a brand or company to attract the target audience. This can be done through paid, own, or earned media channels.
Advertising, on the other hand, has a much narrower goal, namely to promote a specific product or service.
To visualize the differences, marketing is the umbrella term for brand positioning and awareness, while advertising is just one of the tactics used to achieve this.
Advertising lets you use social media, search engine, TV or print, podcasts, radio spots, billboards, and more. Depending on your audience, you will likely be using a mix of the best channels that lead to success.
As you can see, advertising is a marketing step. Marketing prepares products for the market, works on the general brand message and positioning, while advertising then promotes certain products or services.
Most successful marketing strategies use advertising at different levels of a campaign in different media types.
While marketing can be paid, owned, or earned media, advertising is the component of marketing that focuses solely on the paid media aspect.
Marketing will convince potential customers that you are the brand they want to use, that this product will help them, and advertising is focused on communicating a product and is the best way to achieve a goal.
You can think of marketing as the strategic decision-making process that helps companies understand how a product or service aligns with the target audience. This helps companies figure out how they want to sell the product and position it in the market. And then advertising makes a product or service known to the target audience through paid means.
These two concepts do not contradict each other. In fact, advertising is almost always intended to leverage a marketing plan and communicate the marketing message.
In addition, the way you calculate success for these two industries is also different.
When it comes to advertising, you can focus on the return on advertising spend and actual sales. Marketing success can be measured in different ways. Brand awareness and impressions are just a few of the methods companies use to measure the success of a marketing campaign (in addition to ROI).
Now let’s get into the details about different types of advertising and marketing and how they are similar or different.
Native advertising vs. content marketing
Native advertising is a way to make paid ads appear more organic in a person’s everyday life. Ads are generally interrupters. They interrupt your day and say, “Hey, look at me.” However, people have ad blindness and may not even notice an ad, especially in the digital space.
Therefore, domestic advertising became popular. With native advertising, you can buy ad space online and work with a media network to ensure that an ad is not interrupted but works with other organic materials.
For example, this could look like an advertisement or collaboration that will definitely get paid but appear more local in someone else’s feed. It can be a paid post on Instagram or a paid blog article.
Content marketing, on the other hand, is not paid and is usually the process of creating and self-publishing your own media materials. An example of a company blog is content marketing. Your email newsletter is content marketing. However, paid collaboration for a blog on someone else’s website is native advertising.
The main difference between these two is that one gets paid and one isn’t. And this content marketing is usually used by your own business while native advertising is on another website.
Now that we understand more about this niche, let’s move on to another area of marketing and advertising that may be confusing.
Mobile Marketing vs. Mobile Advertising
Mobile marketing is the process of creating marketing materials to be used in the mobile space. That could be an app. This can be location-based services, text marketing or messenger marketing. You might want to make sure your marketing assets are mobile responsive and designed for the mobile experience.
On the other hand, mobile advertising is, in turn, the process of paying for advertising space specifically displayed in mobile space. This could be an ad that appears in an app or an ad that appears when people search online on their phone.
The difference between these two concepts is similar to the general difference between marketing and advertising.
Mobile marketing is the process of developing strategies that will reach audiences and increase brand awareness in the mobile space. Mobile advertising is one tactic to achieve this.
This framework can be applied to any area of marketing and advertising, be it content marketing, mobile marketing or social media marketing.
Ultimately, you need both marketing and advertising to have an effective strategy. If you are just advertising, you are missing out on a lot of other marketing tactics that can help you build brand awareness, connect with your audience, and increase sales.