Depending on who you ask, marketing can mean a number of different things. Some equate marketing with sales, and view them as interchangeable and virtually equivalent. Others see marketing as a component of business development as if it were an exclusive function of management. Marketing can also be about tabulating statistics as a means of tracking consumer behavior, and managing the logistics of making a product accessible to those most likely to buy it. But like the parable of the blind men trying to describe an elephant, each of these descriptions is only partially correct.
Management can sometimes leave out one of the most important components of effective marketing—creative content. Regardless of how you choose to arrive at your marketing plan, the final execution of that plan will always involve the creative process. There must be a relevant and compelling message.
You'll find that the best marketing campaigns are a combination of analytical strategy and creative vision. Marketing experts and authors Al and Laura Ries described it as a balance between left-brain logic and right brain intuition. Effective marketing usually finds that "sweet spot" between objective reality and subjective perception.