Relation between advertising and Sales promotion


Advertising is the process of expressing the qualities and advantages of your products and services, relative to the product and services that your competitors are offering. In most instances, businesses will use advertising as a means of expressing the unique selling proposition that makes their products and services superior to those that their competitors sell.

For example, Lexus advertises its luxury vehicles as having been created by the “relentless pursuit of perfection,” and BMW counters this message by touting its vehicles as “The Ultimate Driving Machine.” The main goal of advertising is to increase sales and to create branding opportunities that can pay off in the future.

Sales Promotion

Sales promotions are all about the short-term sales of products and services. Many companies push these promotions during specific periods when consumer demand is likely to be higher than normal. For example, the holiday season is a prime time for businesses to hold sales promotions, because customers are more primed to make impulse purchases. Sales promotions can include free trials for a limited time, discount coupons, and buy-one-get-one-free deals.

Differences between Advertising and Sales Promotions

Permanent vs. temporary strategy

Advertising is a permanent strategy that involves marketing and sales, whereas sales promotions have a limited time frame.

Different end goals

Advertising appeals to the wants and needs of a target audience, and seeks to persuade prospective customers that your company is worthy of their attention. The end goal with advertising isn’t always to make a sale; in some instances, it’s to set the stage for a sale in the future by introducing prospects to your company’s products and services. In contrast, sales promotions are strictly about moving products and services, and are designed solely to appeal to the financial consideration of a prospect.

Indirect vs. direct appeal

Advertising can involve a number of indirect methods to create the desired effect in a target audience, whereas sales promotions are not subtle or meant to be hidden in any way. For example, a skateboard company that’s involved in advertising might talk about the type of material used to make the board, the rotational capabilities of the board’s wheels, and the different types of jumps that skaters can attempt with the board. However, if the skateboard company was involved in sales promotions, it would focus on the price of the board, and the discounts available, if consumers buy more than one board.

Speed of Results

Brand equity and identity typically develop over the longer term. Many advertising exposures are required for the consumer to feel the emotional pull a product might offer. Advertising develops this relationship over time.

Sales promotions are after shorter-term gains in market share and the main message to the consumer is not necessarily brand-oriented. Rather it is an appeal to act immediately to purchase the product.


Advertising uses indirect and subtle methods to create a brand image while sales promotions are much more direct. Advertising for a cell phone service might emphasize the coverage area and the many styles of phones available.

A cell phone sales promotion might emphasize a free phone for signing a two-year contract if sign-up is within the next month.

The various methods of marketing communication can be best suited to different stages in the product life cycle.  Stewart (1996) and Van Raaji believe advertising can be best for introduction and growth, while sales promotion works best in late stages like maturity and decline.  Adverts in the earlier stages inform the consumer and establish the place in the market, while sales promotion can take market share from others and revive the brand.

Different brands and products or services will experience different levels of success from sales promotion.  In some cases with a brand that has a wide range of products advertising is the better option.  Sales promotion is more likely to focus on a certain product or range, with its price cut or competition etc.

Relationships between Advertising and Promotion

Advertising and Promotion is the most import in the communications industry. Adverting is only one element of the promotion mix, but it often considered prominent in the overall marketing mix design. Its high visibility and pervasiveness made it as an important social and encomia topic in Indian society. Promotion may be defined as “The co-ordination of all seller initiated efforts to set up channels of information and persuasion to facilitate the scale of a good or service. Promotion is most often intended to be a supporting component in a marketing mix. Promotion decision must be integrated and co-ordinate with the rest of the marketing mix, particularly product/brand decisions, so that it may effectively support an entire marketing mix strategy. The promotion mix consists of four basic elements. They are:

  1. Advertising is the dissemination of information by non-personal means through paid media where the source is the sponsoring organization.
  2. Personal selling is the dissemination of information by non-personal methods, like face-face, contacts between audience and employee of to the Sponsoring organization. The source of information is the sponsoring organization.
  3. Sales promotion is the dissemination of information through a varietal of activities other than personal selling, advertising and publicity which stimulate consumer purchasing and dealer effectiveness.
  4. Publicity is the disseminating of information by personal or non-personal means and is not directly paid by the organization and the organization is not the source.

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