Selling or marketing?

I recently moved into an apartment and downstairs we have two coffee shops.

They both stock delicatessen items, prepare take away meals, sell lunch and of course serve coffee.

They are identical, in many ways.

One is always full and sometimes it’s hard to get a seat, while the other is normally empty.

The empty one is far cheaper, yet what they are selling isn’t that different. However one is just selling, while the other is marketing.

The difference between the two was best described by a former lecturer at the Harvard Business School, Theodore Levitt.

“Selling focuses on the needs of the seller and the need to convert product to cash. Marketing focuses on the needs of the buyer and the need to satisfy the customer through the products produced.”

The successful café has created an experience and their shelves are crammed with interesting things to buy.

You might just go in for a macchiato but you will probably come out with a basket full of imported French Brie de Meaux, Italian Sopressata and a duck egg Frittata for tonight’s dinner.

I’m off for a coffee now, and I’m taking my wallet.

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