The short answer: Sales is getting people to purchase; marketing is positioning your brand within the industry.
They're heavily related with lots of overlap, but are also distinct from each other.
Here's the quick answer:
Marketing is getting the buyer's attention. Sales is closing the deal.
(Some great answers on here!)
Marketing generates interest.
Sales generates revenue.
Marketing is your brand, culture, products, offerings or behaviors communicated to a specific market in which they have the potential to add value.
Sales is a basic piece of the promotional mix. Direct sales is also a tactic that works wonders in a B2B setting.
Sales is the process to exchange a product or service for money.
Marketing is the process of telling to people to buy a product or service. This telling is defined by the 4P's according to Professor Porter. Product, Price, Place and Promotion. There is a new P today, People.
Marketing primarily informs people about your business and should also tell them you are tapped into their needs and wants.
Sales is the conversation you have on helping people determine if they will buy from you and involves establishing why the value of your services exceeds the price you are charging for them.
Marketing is the fine measure of how well each product/niche market thrust works, and it delivers all forward movement in multilevel and multimarket sales to the board of directors. Marketing deals with research, testing, retesting, and established exacting market ROI equations for defined success ratios in each market or submarket. After proving a market with extensive testing, Marketing then prepares scripts, brochures, support processes for the salesman to take the good word out into a marketplace. It also defines for the salesman pricing, markup, margins and what success is for quota, forecast and ROI. Great marketing directors earn their salary and bonus based on overall company ROI in the market. Specialists in each market have extensive experience and again focus on success by market and market niche. For example: Few(if any) web marketing specialists would have the faintest idea how to define and measure a direct mail or constitutional advertising program. In Marketing experience is priceless.
Sales is the process of taking a given product to a well defined, researched market with a well defined competition researched product. Sales includes face to face client meetings, cold calling, web based selling, referrals and networking. Great sales people earn their salary and/or commissions by exceeding marketing based quotas defined by marketing and accounting ROI. Sales Managers utilize prepared brochures, equations and trains sales people to answer questions and close on product sales.
Sales is handicapped and disorganized without great marketing. There has to be solid support from marketing for the salesman to do his job.
Each business is handicapped without a strong, analytical marketing arm that "tests outside the box" measuring success by fractions of a percentage in each market thrust. Marketing also kills projects that look good, but don't payoff.
I like to say that marketing is everything that opens the door to a prospective customer and sales is everything that closes the sale.
Marketing's job is to create awareness and interest. Sales' job is to move the prospect from interest to purchase.
This is a topic that is top of mind for me today, as I have been working with a Chief Marketing Officer consultant who happens to have both skill sets. Most people you meet will be good at one or the other, but not both.
Of course, if your business is marketing, you must engage in sales to get new clients (a part of my job that I do not relish).
And if your business is sales, you must engage in marketing to scout out new opportunities (but likely you're happiest when overcoming objections and getting your prospect to "yes.").
They are integrally related, but not one and the same.
I hope that answers your question. I could go into detail about the tactics of marketing vs. the tactics of sales, but I think that describing their different functions pretty much tells the story.
Sales means selling products of services. &
Marketing means promote products and services to sale.