Marketing Minute: Marketing vs. Sales


A: Do you know the difference between sales and marketing?

E: Marketing is everything you do to reach and persuade prospects that your company is the best for them. Sales is everything you do to get a signed agreement with a contract. If everything works together the potential customer will enter the sales funnel via the marketing efforts.

A: Absolutely. Marketing and sales should work simultaneously and collaboratively because they're deeply interconnected. Unfortunately, in many companies, they are departments that work independently of one another and often don't even get along which ends up hurting corporate performance.

E: When sales are disappointing marketing blames the sales force for its poor execution of nurturing and converting leads. The sales team, in turn, claims that marketing created messages that don't resonate with potential customers and they use too much of the budget.

A: However when a company's sales and marketing team works well together the results are usually far better with substantial improvement on important performance metrics and corporate performance.

E: So why wouldn't the sales and marketing teams choose to work better together?

A: One of the reasons is that marketing and sales have different goals. Marketing has strategic long-term goals that involve strong branding and awareness messaging and are focused on generating the leads. They look at metrics such as website visitors, email open rates, or members of articles published as a way to determine their success.

E: Sales, on the other hand, is fast-paced. It has monthly or quarterly quotas. The goals are based around productivity revenue generation and personal and professional development.

A: Also sales and marketing departments view their role in revenue generation quite differently. Marketing has often been thought of as a cost center instead of a revenue center. However, in today's well-educated internet-savvy marketplace, marketing can generate revenue by driving potential customers directly into the sales funnel or an e-commerce site.

E: So how else can marketing and sales work better together?

A: Communication is key. Marketing should be communicating to sales what marketing goal they have, the content that's being used to generate those leads, and he'll marketing is nurturing those leaves.

E: On the flip side the sales team should be communicating with the marketing department the overall goal of for lead generation, which sources and content generate the best leads, what leads are saying about the marketing content, and how many leads are connecting with and closing.

A: With the right balance of communication and collaboration, marketing and sales can be a team as strong and cohesive as salt and pepper, peanut butter and jelly, or a pitcher and a catcher.

Do you need help aligning your marketing and sales department? If so visit our website at