Differences between tactics and strategy

The concept of tactics and strategy derive mainly from the military field. Both terms are used in different areas, today, we can mention not only the military area, but also the economic area, marketing, commerce, among others. We usually come across these terms and in the particular interest of this article, we want to show their differences.


We can say that tactics is a system or method that is designed to carry out a plan and achieve a specific objective. Also, the tactic has to do more than anything with the way and the method that is used to do things to achieve the objective.

This concept applies to more specific actions that are part of a whole, to achieve the desired objective. In general, to achieve specific or tactical actions, it is necessary to involve professionals from different areas and providers who are experts in the subjects required to guarantee compliance.

Let’s look at an example:

To try to exemplify the situation of the tactic concept, we will use a company that establishes the objective of increasing its potential clients by 50% and for this it plans to reach clients through the internet.

Since the objective is to increase potential clients, tactics must be sought to achieve it. Therefore, the specific actions that will allow us to increase potential clients through the internet must be determined. Consequently, the company must, first of all, evaluate if they have experts in electronic commerce such as designers, editors, sellers, among others. Next, the specific means that will be used to reach customers must be identified, such as eBay, Amazon, their own website, among others.

In the same way and in a general way, all these briefly mentioned actions are considered as tactics to achieve the stated objective.


We can say that the strategy is an agglomeration of actions that are generally applied to generate a – plan – that will allow the achievement of a desired objective.

Let’s look at some examples:

Many companies use strategies to maximize profits such as:

  • At the time of a product launch, prices can be relatively high, not only to recover the cost of developing the product, but also because many purchases are made by consumers who are curious or who want the latest news.
  • The opposite case also occurs where the product is initially offered at extremely low prices, in order to be able to penetrate the market more quickly and gain fame or reputation, as well as making the product known in the shortest time.

Additionally, taking as a reference the example raised in tactics , the fact that the company in question had the objective of increasing its potential customers by 50% and for this they were considering reaching customers through the internet, in this case – reach customers through the internet- would be the strategy proposed by the company.

For all the aforementioned we can summarize some differences between tactics and strategy:

Tactic Strategy
Method to exercise a plan and achieve a specific objective. It is a plan that is generated to achieve a desired goal.
Tactics are generally specific plans of action. Strategies are more general action plans.
Tactics are short to medium term. The strategies are medium term.
Strategies are usually outlined by senior managers, senior executives, or company managers, etc. Tactics are usually defined by middle managers, executives who occupy intermediate strategic positions, delegated personnel, etc.

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