Many people are conflicted between the difference of marketing and branding. Some think they’re the same thing, some think one is more important than the other, some don’t know the importance of either. We put together some information to help you learn the difference and how each can help you in creating a successful product.

The definition of marketing is a set of tools, processes, and strategies you use to promote your product. Marketing is the actions you take to connect with your customer in order to get them to buy your products.

Branding is a marketing practice of actively shaping your brand. It’s about defining who you are as a company. More often than not, when people hear “branding” they think logo/design, but branding is so much more. Branding establishes the positions and differentiator behind the product and creates an emotional connection.

Here are some of the main differences:

1. ATTENTION

Most successful industries are competitive and possibly oversaturated with products. In order to get your business out in front of the competition, marketing is a must. However, once the attention of your product has been obtained through marketing, it’s the branding that keeps it. People like to purchase products from a brand they believe in. So while marketing can push your product to the top of a long list of others, it’s your branding that will entice people to continue to purchase your product over something different.

The Futur: Marketing Vs Branding

2. SALES VS LOYALTY

Most marketing strategies are used to drive results – mostly sales related results. Branding focuses more so on long-term results of keeping their audience/customers coming back for more. Marketing usually has a call to action and is extremely trackable. However, supreme brands like Nike and Apple don’t rely on call-to-actions or promotions in their ads to drive results. Their brands are so strong that just some imagery or video that are brand heavy and show the products are enough. Their clicks aren’t coming from promotions, but from their branding. While this example is for high-level brands, it proves that marketing strategies change while the branding stays strong. While both are important and assist each other in the goal of creating a successful business, one is a sprint and one is a marathon.

Why Your Brand Plan Is More Important Than Your Business Plan

Discussion on marketing strategy

3. WHICH COMES FIRST?

Both have their place in creating a successful product but differ in where their importance lies. Most companies would probably argue that all the money should go into marketing so that you can push thousands of ads across all platforms. However, that doesn’t mean that it’s the most important. If you’re putting a bunch of money behind bad branding with no story, you might as well throw the money away. If a brand is not memorable, regardless of how many ads you have out there, people aren’t going to respond to them. Branding should be developed first. Because so many markets are oversaturated with the same product, your brand is what is going to set you apart and boost your sales.

4. MARKETING STRATEGIES CHANGE

There is a lot of overlap between marketing and branding. Traditional marketing (advertising) isn’t as successful anymore because you can’t make claims that aren’t backed up by actual experience. Consumers trust real people and rely on reviews or influencer marketing to decide if a product is worth the purchase. Branding can change as well, but it more evolves and adapts with trends. Marketing can be using one strategy one week and a completely new strategy the next week.

Branding Vs Marketing: A Guide

Simply put, marketing is what gets people to engage with your company for the first time, branding is what keeps them loyal. Or as Marketing Specialist, Alexander Chao, says “marketing is asking someone out on a date, branding is why they say yes.”


If you need help with marketing or branding strategies we offer marketing and design services to help boost your product. As a leading Contract Manufacturer we want to provide you with the tools and resources to create a successful product. Contact us to see how we can help you today.