If catching customers requires patience and proper incentives, than advertising would be roughly analogous to using a fishing net while marketing would be suggestive of casting an individual lure into the water in search of your fish. Both are effective methods of putting food on the table and share similar goals, but the two methods are vastly different in terms of what they end up pulling out of the water.
That’s because advertising should be thought of as an indiscriminate way to market to your customers, which is guaranteed to pull in what will, undoubtedly, prove an eclectic mix of fish or customers, while marketing is designed to appeal to a specific species of customer that are drawn from the waters using the perfect bait to garner their attention.
Advertising is ubiquitous. Whether you are picking up the daily neighborhood newspaper, or turning on your favorite television show, you are bombarded with advertising messages that you neither knew were contained within, nor would be interested in purchasing even had you known what was lurking about for your attention.
Advertising reaches out to the masses through mass media outlets with the hope that the sales message will intersect with potential customers as they are reading their paper or watching television. It’s a tried and true method of garnering customer interest, but it is a fairly passive method for achieving your marketing goals. This is because advertising relies entirely on a fortuitous intersection of your message with a motivated buyer who just happens to be looking for what you have to sell.
That said, advertising is an excellent way to trawl for what’s under the water in search of what manner of species might inhabit the depths below. Once you have identified which individual species are moving about through the water, then you can correctly bait your hook to bring in the optimum customer type. In keeping with our earlier analogy, casting your line with specific bait on the hook is comparable to marketing, and that’s where we will turn our attention to next.
Whereas advertising specialists concentrate on casting as wide a net as possible through the use of mass media, marketing professionals target their efforts towards select demographics that have been identified through customer profiling as being interested in what you have to sell. While the former will more than likely be found buying ad space in a newspaper, the latter will probably be discovered parsing over email lists of individuals who are already predisposed to look at what you have to offer with an open wallet.
A marketer gets to know their customer through the social interaction of blogs, social media, and emails. Whereas placing an advertisement in the paper is an event, managing an ongoing social media campaign is an ongoing process that yields more intimate knowledge of potential buying patterns.
A Layered Marketing Message…
Combing an active advertising program with a dynamic marketing presence allows for multiple avenues in which to seek out and grab your customer’s interest. Used together, advertising works to identify potential clientele while marketing seeks to target them with specific content that is engineered to appeal to them. The combination is a potent mixture of tactics that will keep your name in the news and your services on their minds.