Difference Between Product Marketing and Service Marketing

Key Difference – Product Marketing vs Service Marketing

The key difference between product marketing and service marketing is that product marketing is concerned with tangible, storable, and measurable products whereas service marketing is concerned with services. However, the difference between product marketing and service marketing does not merely refer to the differences between the product and service; it is also concerned with how the needs of the customers are satisfied. A product or service can be used in isolation, but in most instances, each complements the other in order to provide the best customer experience. Due to this, marketing products and services have many similarities. For example, a restaurant serves a product, but the customer experience a combination of both product and service (time taken for delivery, customer reception, quality, and taste). So, this interconnection and dependence should always be given priority by the sellers.

What is Product Marketing?

Product marketing refers to the process of production of a product with demand (or foreseen demand), thereafter promoting and selling that product. Though production is literally related to product management, the identification of the demand or need is part of product marketing where the loop of feedback is absorbed from customer interaction. That is why we have included the production to the overall picture of product marketing. A product needs to be:

  • Tangible
  • Storable
  • Replicating ability (repeatability / duplication)
  • Measurable
  • Control quality by data
  • Possibility for patents

Since we have defined and explained the attributes of a product, we will now look at how a product originates. Product marketing needs to address few critical questions in order for a product to be successful:

  • What customer needs are we going to solve? (Product)
  • Who will be the customers? (Segmentation)
  • How are we to approach the customers? (Distribution)
  • At what price are we pitching in our products?

Product marketing managers are responsible for informing the organization about customer comments and feedback, which will aid in answering the questions listed above. Product marketing needs to understand the product life cycle. Each product has a pre-adoption, growth, maturity, and decline stage. By understanding this cycle, products can be replaced or restructured for sustainability of the organization. Main Difference - Product Marketing vs Service Marketing

What is Service Marketing?

Service marketing refers to the origination of a service, promotion and providing customer experience at a judgmental price. Identifying the exact cost to a service is quite difficult, and it will differ from person to person. So, the price is decided by the seller on the grounds of the identifiable cost and estimated workmanship. Time and effort are given estimations. Thus, the price can be classified as judgmental price as the cost can’t be accurate as in products. A service needs to be:

  • Intangible
  • Consumed at the point of interaction
  • Difficult to repeat
  • Difficult to patent
  • Difficult to measure
  • An experience for customer
  • Inseparable from seller

Service marketing can be either business to business (B2B) or business to consumer (B2C). Examples of service marketing are banking, hospitality, transportation, healthcare, professional services, and telecommunications.Difference Between Product Marketing and Service Marketing

What is the difference between Product Marketing and Service Marketing?

Now we will compare and contrast between product marketing and service marketing


Product Marketing: Product Marketing is the process of production of a product with demand (or foreseen demand), promoting, and selling that product.

Service Marketing: Service Marketing is the origination of a service, promotion and providing customer experience at a judgmental price.

Nature of Offering

Product Marketing: Product marketing is related to products which are tangible, storable, repeatable (replication), measurable, quality controlled by data and possible to patent.

Service Marketing: Service marketing relates to services which are intangible, consumed at the point of interaction, difficult to repeat, difficult to patent, difficult to measure, an experience for the customer and inseparable from the seller.

Costing or Price Calculation

Product Marketing: The data and quantity will be available for an exact cost of a product. So, it will be easier to markup and set the prices. Furthermore, the price variance between competitors of the same product can’t be substantially different.

Service Marketing: The price is judgmental as the exact cost of a pure service is unidentifiable. So, there could be vast differences in prices between service providers.

Purchase Behavior

Product Marketing: The products marketed can be positioned to trigger impulse buying. Impulse buying is buying goods without planning in advance; it’s a sudden decision. For example, we can buy a dress when we are passing by a mall if it attracts us. It may be needed or not. There could be justification for the purchase such as future usage.

Service Marketing:  Impulse buying rarely exists. For example, no one will go and watch a movie or go to the bank for a loan without a need. There needs to be a necessity to purchase a service as its spontaneous usage and not intended for future usage. But, in service marketing, the seller can explain the benefits of certain service and persuade the customer to purchase such as insurance.

But, in most instances product marketing utilizes service attributes and service marketing utilizes products for selling. Although we say product marketing, it’s not essentially a pure tangible network and vise-versa. This needs to be clearly drawn attention.

Image Courtesy:  Pixbay