understand the difference between these concepts – WAU

Learn here the difference between marketing and sales and how both teams can and should help each other to increase the company’s sales!

When it comes to generating revenue for the company, we immediately think of sales. When it comes to strengthening brand positioning, marketing. But when we talk about customers, relationships, conversions, marketing and sales, they mix in such a way that it looks like they are the same, when in fact they are not. And this creates an incredible discord between the professionals of the two teams.

It is clear that both work together, just remember smarketing to know that the alignment between marketing and sales is a fundamental part in achieving the goals of any company.

But after all, where does one end and the other start? What are the differences between these two concepts?

Setting the stage with marketing

Marketing’s mission is to help the company achieve its business goals, whatever they may be.

It may be the increase in sales, growth in market share (market share), lead capture, strengthening of the brand, promotion of products and services, among others. In other words, it is a broad work, which requires several competencies gathered and impacts the entire organization.

If you’re wondering “how does it impact the entire organization?”, Rest assured. Let’s explain: marketing is not only done by the marketing team, but by all professionals who work at the company.

There is no point in making impeccable marketing campaigns if the service is flawed; whether employees are rude; if the company remains dirty. Customer perception will be negative in all of these cases.

Therefore, marketing is more than dissemination strategies, it is responsible for developing a positive perception in relation to the company in all instances.

But back to the factors that cause marketing and sales to be confused most of the time, let’s look at the responsibilities of marketing towards customers:

Market knowledge

Marketing is responsible for conducting market research to understand the company’s business environment, as well as the customer profile that she intends to achieve.

It is he who plans, who defines the approach that will be taken in each interaction between the company and potential customers.

To this end, marketing uses data and information, identifies trends and behaviors, develops buyers persona and starts to focus all actions so that the company reaches the objectives outlined in strategic planning.

Lead capture

And also marketing who should attract organic leads for the company, that is, people interested in what it has to offer.

This work is only possible because marketing has the information that makes it possible to reach this audience through clear and assertive communication, developed so that it is natural and serves the interests of potential customers who are not yet ready to buy.

To attract leads, marketing uses online and offline communication strategies, such as content marketing, SEO, sponsored links, advertising on public roads, radio and TV commercials, distribution of printed materials, among others. This means that there is no salesperson on every corner lacing potential customers.

Marketing does a massive job of brand awareness so that people get involved spontaneously with the company.

Lead and relationship nutrition

After capturing a lead, marketing will also play the role of educator, nurturing that lead with relevant and useful knowledge so that he can mature the purchase idea.

He will be responsible for initiating and maintain a relationship with these people who can, at any given moment, become customers of the company. But marketing is not necessarily interested in an immediate conversion, what it wants is to build a solid base for people to have a positive perception about the company and become disseminators of its message.

Sales are a consequence of this relationship.

lead nutrition guide

Sales opportunities

By nurturing leads, marketing is qualifying them, that is, selecting those most likely to buy, in order to pass them on to sales.

In other words, marketing sets the stage, delights leads, involves them, and then turns them into business opportunities. But it is not marketing that turns leads into customers.

This is where the baton passes.

Converting leads into sales customers

Once the leads have been attracted, nurtured and selected, sales receive them so they can be turned into customers.

Realize that work is very different, after all, marketing invests in communication, in relationships, in trust. Meanwhile, sales are based on the power of persuasion salespeople to highlight the benefits and advantages of products and services, convincing leads to buy.

In this sense, selling requires other skills that are not found in marketing, but that are essential for the sales cycle to be completed:

Understanding needs

The seller is the one who has direct contact with customers, that is, he can extract other information that marketing does not have access to.

Face to face with the customer, the salesperson can ask, read the gestures and expressions, counter the objections and thus understand, with much more clarity, what the customer really needs.

From this, the seller is able to connect the customer’s need to the company’s solution, highlighting how each product or service can help in solving a problem or need.


More than simply saying how the company can help the customer, the seller has to strike a balance between price and offer. Having a magic solution is not enough; it needs to be accessible as well.

That’s where sales negotiation power comes in, which we don’t always see in marketing.

It is in the negotiation that sales will work to offer the company’s value within the possibilities of each client, make proposals, receive counter offers, until a consensus is reached.

At no time does this marketing process have any influence, as it has already done the job of arousing interest in the solution. The salesperson’s mission is to persuade the customer to bring the best product or service.


When negotiations end well, the customer accepts the company’s value offer and closes the deal. That is, the conversion takes place through sales work, but it does not mean that only this sector influenced the purchase decision.

Marketing must have done a great job of preparing, arguing through content, advertising and advertising for the customer to reach the company.

Marketing and sales: what would be of one without the other?

Surely you realized that sales continue the work of marketing. And that’s why we’ve been talking so much about vendarketing or smarketing here on the blog. The alignment between these two teams is essential for the company to maximize its sales opportunities.

If a company has marketing, but does not have sales, it does not allow the leads that accumulate in the sales funnel to flow, since not everyone makes the purchase decision on their own. If any lead needs a little extra push, the company that doesn’t have a structured sales sector has a problem.

In the opposite situation, a company that has a sales sector, but does not have structured marketing, sales even happen. But they take a lot more work than you can imagine.

Salespeople live on cold calls, fight each other over a lead who contacted them on their own, buy contact lists to try their luck and obtain little representative results close to what they could generate in return for the company if these two sectors existed and they worked in coordination.

Can marketing and sales live together peacefully?

This is precisely the concept of smarketing: making marketing and sales work together towards the same objectives, that is, generating recipe.

Companies that have already realized that feuds between these two sectors have much more to hinder than to generate results have invested in the alignment between marketing and sales so that there is an understanding that they are part of a common whole.

However, no matter how much you make these two sectors integrated into your company, the concepts of marketing and sales remain distinct and require different skills in order to be employed correctly.

Does this mean having professionals with very different profiles in the same environment, exchanging ideas, experiences, impressions and, why not, disagreements?

Disagreements happen precisely because people cannot see where each activity begins and ends. Even the professionals involved in both areas have these doubts, which makes marketing want to sell and sales want to do marketing.

Obviously working as a team is not prohibited, but everyone knows their responsibilities and should be charged for it.

Rescuing the concepts

To end our conversation, let’s get to the heart of the matter by comparing it to football: marketing is the middle of the field, sales the attacker.

If the midfield fails, the attacker does not get in the face of the goal. And if the attacker arrives at the shooting line and misses the penalty, all the midfield work has been thrown away.

So if you still have any questions about the differences between marketing and sales, leave your comment below and we’ll get back to you soon.

It’s just not worth continuing to feed this discord saying that this or that is more important for the company. After all, there is no one-man team, do you agree?

So, understand how they work together with our High Performance Marketing and Sales ebook.

download ebook marketing and sales