A simple comparison to differentiate marketing, advertising and branding

Working with business students or with entrepreneurs one does hear marketing strategies which are explained as having an online brand, having social media, or advertising a lot.

What they do not understand is all these are part of the plan; they do not try to understand the deep and complex concept that is behind any truly effective marketing strategy.

All the above terms are different in a context of marketing. These concepts if applied personally would be something different.


The word ‘marketing’ is how you see yourself. Marketing is all about your representation you are trying to present to others. It is about the way you dress, the patterns you choose, the colors you use that is how you groom yourself. Everyone has a different strategy for it. It also applies to those T-shirt worn by someone throughout his college life which is to get easily recognizable.

Having no strategy for your personal appearance is also one of the strategies and many people do it.

One chooses an image one wishes to project himself. It can be of a sports player, a business professional, a technical nerd or anything else. By dressing up so you are communicating to others through your dress/appearance the character you like, the value you offer to others and the attributes you like the most.

First impressions are determined by appearance though one cannot admit that appearances are all that important. Impression on others can be molded and evolved later but they require the efforts and takes time on your part. It is more about how you want your company outlook to be and how effectively the consumers will accept your message and image.


How you act in the public is advertising. Advertising describes your actions to the public. What you say is important. How you carry yourself and other attributes describe your actions. It is a part of your marketing strategy and you should have consistency between your actions and your image you want to put up with or someone to know you.

Say you are a fan of a xyz club but are wearing some other clubs T-shirt and cheering the team. Your dress up (T-shirt) and your actions (cheering up) are completely mismatched. Maybe you will make your friends angry and they may boycott you in the future.

If your business advertising strategy is not in line with your marketing methods your consumers will get confused and may turn away from you. You should not execute your advertising at a wrong place, with the wrong message, and to a wrong audience.


How others see you is branding. Labelling or branding is how business actually does. Marketing strategy should consider your personal brand and should be accessed. If your business brand is strong you have more time at your hand building it. In the case of negative publicity or reputation problems, you need to focus more on changing people’s perception or rebuilt it.

From a business point of view understanding how consumers recognize your business is important and helps you decide how you will be executing your advertising and marketing strategy.

Applying the above-discussed concept oneself creates a simple and an effective way how each of the concepts can be applied to your business.

Kamlesh Mourya

Author: Kamlesh Mourya

Kamlesh Mourya is the director of 7eyetechnologies; an India based IT Company that provides services web development, designing and online marketing. Kamlesh occasionally blogs about social media.

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