Marketing Agency vs. Advertising Agency
Business owners who are looking to increase revenue are sometimes presented with a choice of professional advisors – – a marketing firm or advertising agency services. This choice is augmented by the types of services your business requires and the services offered. A marketing firm looks at the bigger picture via market research, strategic planning (including brand and product management), and sales and sales management experience (often in your specific industry). Ad agencies do research to find out how to best reach and persuade your target audience, but their primary purpose is to get your message. A marketing firm is generalists and advertising agencies are the specialists. As time goes on, these two roles are being blurred. Marketing agencies often provide advertising agency services and advertising agencies often do marketing.
Marketing is about taking the product and service offered by your business from concept to users. The marketing process is focused on the users. This is a play on strategy. Marketing agencies are paying attention to strategy development first and foremost. They integrate the elements of marketing in general to grow your user base. They are often specialized by industry, geography and markets. Often times marketing decisions can come from in-house. If you have a CMO or director of marketing, you shouldn’t need a marketing firm. If your primary need is thinking power to come up with the strategies to get and keep customers, partner with a marketing firm.
Advertising agency services are a single element of the marketing procedure. It’s the part that involves getting the word out concerning your business, product, or the services you are offering. It involves the process of developing strategies such as ad placement, frequency, etc. Advertising includes the placement of an ad in such mediums as newspapers, direct mail, billboards, television, radio, and of course the Internet. Advertising agency services are the main expense of most marketing strategies, with public relations subsequent in a close second and market research not falling far behind. Consequently, if you have a firm grip on the strategic marketing challenges confronting your business but need help with the tactical aspects of executing an effective communication program, partner with an advertising agency.
The best way to differentiate between an advertising agency services and marketing agency services is to think of marketing as a cake, inside that cake you have slices of advertising, market research, media planning, public relations, product pricing, distribution, customer support, sales strategy, and community involvement. Advertising only equals one piece of the cake in the strategy. All of these slices must work independently of each other, but they all work toward the same goal. Research and time are required for effective marketing. Think of marketing as everything that an organization does to facilitate an exchange between company and consumer.