In recent content we touched on the difference between a logo and branding and explained the relevance of graphic design to both marketing and brandingBut what is marketing? What is branding? And how do they differ? defines marketing as, “the action or business of promoting and selling products or services, including market research and advertising.” However marketing is best defined by the 4 P’s: Product, Price, Promotion and Place. HubSpot further defines marketing as “the process of getting consumers interested in your company’s product or service. This happens through market research, analysis, and a solid understanding of your ideal consumers wants and needs. Marketing pertains to all aspects of a business, including product development, distribution methods, sales, and advertising”.

Conversely, defines branding as “The marketing practice of creating a name, symbol or design that identifies and differentiates a product from other products.” But we simply define it as the promise of a unique, lasting experience for your customers.


1. Branding is the essence of who you are, marketing is the message you use to build awareness for your brand, products and services.

2. Branding comes first, marketing comes second. To market your brand effectively you first have to know what you are promoting. It is imperative to clearly define who you are as a brand before you begin to plan your marketing strategies, tools, methods and tactics. Branding sets the tone of your overall marketing strategy so it must come first.

3. Branding is strategic; marketing is tactical. While marketing may convince you to buy the latest gadget, it is the brand that will determine whether you will only purchase iphones from there forward. Marketing will unearth and activate consumers who will purchase your product or service, but branding will create advocates and life-long loyal customers of consumers.


Marketing is a targeted, focused activity that is for the most part outwardly directed. A brand is about crafting a confidence in your company and delivering it consistently. This is done through consistently communicating with design, how information is presented on your website, and how your employees interact with anyone who comes into contact with your brand.

Both marketing and branding each have their own types of ROI. As marketing is a business activity that involves spending money to generate revenue, the ROI can be calculated in terms of conversions and sales.

However, evaluating the ROI in a brand is much more challenging due to its many intangible touchpoints. You can measure the effectiveness of a strong brand in any number of these ways:

1. Differentiating your company from your competitors
2. Word of mouth
3. Loyalty, repeat business, and customer retention
4. Customer lifetime value
5. Google search volumes
6. Share of voice on social platforms

Marketing is a key part of your brand. It helps you to communicate the brand promise you want your customers to invest in. Your marketing should be based on your brand positioning, the personality, look, and feel that you have relayed to your customers.

Utilize your marketing efforts to develop your brand but always remember the role and importance of both marketing and branding. This difference is valuable not only in the differentiation of each term, but in relation to determining your strategy and approach to branding your products and marketing your services. 

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Dayna Young

Written by Dayna Young More by this author Arrow