Marketing is the process or strategy that companies develop to communicate with their customers or potential customers the value of their goods and or services. It is the umbrella that defines the tools used to build strong relationships with their customers.
Advertising is one of the tools of marketing. It is usually persuasive, and is usually in the form of paid ads. In the past these were newspaper, magazine, radio, direct mail, the yellow pages and TV ads.
Public Relations or PR is a tool used by companies to promote goodwill with the public, shareholders, prospects, customers, employees, and the community. In the past, press releases were sent to journalists who decided to release the information or not. If a newspaper ran a favorable story about a company, it was free and considered more influential than a paid ad.
Marketing had evolved because of the web. Smart companies are moving their marketing efforts from using all mainstream or mass media to the venues that matter most to their prospects, social media and the internet. The good news is that the web allows small companies to compete effectively with larger ones.
Traditional media can be very expensive. Larger companies with big budgets could dominate on TV and radio, something that could be cost prohibitive to smaller or new companies. Now, small companies with the right content on the web can succeed without having to out spend the big guys.
Online marketing and social media allow companies to target prospects at the moment they are searching for information about specific goods or services. Companies that spend the time developing the right online content are the big winners in today’s digital arena.