By David Rogers

Picture your shop’s bathroom.

This may seem to be a strange way to start an article about marketing and advertising (or any article, really), but trust me for a moment.

In today’s world, small businesses have never had more of an opportunity to reach customers. The growth of social media, the power of Google AdWords and the power of big data all give shop owners effective tools to reach customers that we wish we’d had 20 years ago.

But, it doesn’t matter how effectively we can reach customers with our advertising if we’re not doing good marketing. In other words, you can spend a small fortune online attracting customers, but if they come in for service and your shop’s bathroom doesn’t make them feel welcome and cared for, the advertising money you spent was wasted.

All advertising is marketing. Not all marketing is advertising. Knowing the difference is critical, because it’s the key to getting the most from your marketing budget and holding your marketing vendor accountable.

So, what is marketing? How is it different from advertising? And how do you maximize both in your shop?

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