Sales vs. Selling

It is common that the terms “selling” and “sales” are used interchangeably but they do mean quite different things.

Selling defines all the activities involved in one-on-one engagement between a person from a supplier and a person (may be several persons) from a potential customer.

Sales defines all of the activities undertaken by the supplier which create the environment to support selling. Sales would therefore include functions such as; lead generation, solution design & estimating and bid support.  By way of illustration, a sales campaign would address multiple suspects or prospects whereas a selling campaign refers to the engagement between the supplier and a single prospect.

Two other terms that we will use are methodology and process.  The sales methodology is the strategy and tactics you employ to find and win new and add-on business, sometimes referred to as the go-to-market model.  The methodology defines things such as your approach to; raising awareness & interest, generating leads, following up leads, prospect meetings, bidding for work, proposal writing and managing existing customers. The sales & selling processes provide a completely joined-up environment ensuring the methodology is followed in a structured manner across the sales and selling activities.