Difference between Marketing and Financial Goals


Marketing strategy is designed to deliver short-term financial and marketing goals and to build and strengthen the firm’s competitive advantages over time. A firm that has significant competitive advantages will enjoy greater profitability and stability of performance.

Difference between short and long-term marketing goals

Marketing strategy is expected to deliver short-term (usually within one year) results and long-term (around three years or so) goals. The short-term goals are usually financially-based (such as profit and revenue), as well as top-level marketing goals (such as market share or new product success).

In the longer-term, it is important that marketing strategy enhances the competitive position of the organization. If the firm constantly improves its competitive position in the marketplace, then the firm’s financial performance will continue to improve over time.

However, in many organizations, there is a trade-off between short and long-term goals. For example, if a firm wants to build its competitive position by expanding its product range, then in the short-term, profitability will be dampened as the cost of the product development is incurred. Therefore, firms need to find the right balance between short-term profitability and long-term competitive advantages.

Difference between Marketing and Financial Goals

Many firms have significant stakeholder expectation placed upon then for performance on a year-by-year basis. Obviously, a firm’s marketing strategy needs to be structured in order to ensure these expectations are met.

There are two broad types of goals that marketing strategy is designed to deliver, namely financial and marketing goals. These goals are obviously interrelated (see below), as a marketing goal (like customer satisfaction) should enhance a financial goals (such as profitability).

The following list of marketing and financial objectives highlights the common goals used by firms. Please keep in mind that most firms would choose around three to five of these goals – they certainly would not choose to use all of them as the firm would lose focus.

Common Financial Goals

  • Profit levels
  • Sales Revenue
  • % Growth in Profits or Revenue
  • Profit Margin (as a % or total $’s – sometimes called “gross margin”)
  • Average Price
  • Average Cost
  • Return on Investment (ROI)

Common Marketing Goals

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