Language is a pretty cool thing when you think about it. Regardless of who you are, what you do, where you live, and even what language you speak, communication allows us to do some amazing things and connect to our fellow humans. Language helps us tell stories that sweep us away to new worlds, helps us play with meaning through poetry, allows us to give clear directions or directives that can save lives, and share our passions with the world. Language helps us forge a sense of belonging, create civilization, and dream about the future.
Language is also a tool that unites people, and we’re not just talking about the language of a country or region. Language helps us identify “our people.”
Marketing has its own language. If you’re not part of the Marketing world, the words we use might make little sense to you. You might think you know what the term means, but find it encompasses something different, more nuanced, or just larger scale than you thought based on the word alone.
So, we’re breaking down some of the most common words thrown around in the Marketing world to help you better speak the lingo.
Looking for Opportunities
Let’s dive right in with the word Marketing. Anyone who was a fan of Mad Men probably thinks they know what this word means, that it’s simply a modern alternative to the word “advertising.” That’s actually not accurate, though. It’s a pretty common misconception that marketing and advertising are the same thing, and while they can be related, they aren’t the same thing.
Indulge me and travel back in time to ye olde marketplace. Think of that opening scene from Beauty and the Beast or some other fantasy village market square. What do all the people in that marketplace selling their goods have in common? They are all Looking for Opportunities. Opportunities to exchange goods or currency for the things they have to offer. That’s what Marketing is; getting you out in the world at your marketplace stall so you can find the opportunities to sell your products or services. And every single person in the marketplace is a potential opportunity. But how do you know which of those people is the right opportunity for you?
Identifying Who You Are
This is where branding can be super helpful. Branding is Identifying Who You Are. It’s like having a signature style for your business. Steve Jobs wore the same outfit every day. It was simple, sleek, modern, and fuss-free. All those words could be applied to his business and the products they make. Branding involves coming up with keywords, colors, and design styles that identify the “vibe” you want to give off to your potential customers (i.e., opportunities). Branding involves learning about your target demographic to find out what’s going to appeal to them and use that info to draw them in. For instance, if you’re targeting Gen Z, you can be kind of unhinged when it comes to your brand, and they’ll love it. That branding will not appeal to Boomers. It would be a bad branding strategy to try!
Telling People Who You Are
So you’ve got a service or product you want to offer and set up your marketplace stall (or maybe you have a village shop!) with the perfect sign in the perfect font and colors. Now what? Well, you could just stay in your stall and hope that your product and branding are enough to draw in the right crowd. Or you could do something else, something that gets directly in the faces of those you’re hoping to do business with.
That’s advertising, baby: Telling People Who You Are. In our mythical setting, you hire some street urchins to hand out flyers, hold up signs, or stand near your stall shouting the merits of your product. The modern equivalent that doesn’t break child-labor laws would be putting an ad online or in a magazine, sending out mailers, putting a flyer under the windshield wiper of an unsuspecting car… You get the idea. While Marketing got you in the Marketplace, Advertising is what helps your potential opportunities find you.
Closing An Opportunity
So this one might not be as much of a mystery, but when it comes to marketing, Sales means you’ve Closed An Opportunity. Sales is a great indicator of whether your marketing, branding, and advertising are all working for you. Because they should! If you’re not closing those opportunities, it means one or more of these areas needs a closer look. Are you in the right marketplace? Are you targeting the right demographic? Are you getting your product in the faces of the right people?
All of these terms fall under the umbrella of Marketing because it’s so much easier to find success when all three of those first terms are working together towards the goal of the last one. You can do a couple of these, but combining them is a recipe for long-term success.
This is why working with a Marketing Agency is a game changer for your business. Agencies are full of experts who speak the language of marketing and know how to guide you to make the best decisions to reach your business goals.
Here at Pulse, we love helping our clients identify who they are, get their name out there, and find the right clients to help them close a sale. It’s our passion, and we’d love to help you!