In marketing, promotion refers to any type of marketing communication used to inform or persuade target audiences of the relative merits of a product, service, brand or issue. The aim of promotion is to increase awareness, create interest, generate sales or create brand loyalty. It is one of the basic elements of the market mix, which includes the four Ps, i.e., product, price, place, and promotion.
The term promotion derives from the Old French, promocion meaning to "move forward", "push onward" or to "advance in rank or position" which in turn, comes from the Latin, promotionem meaning "a moving forward". The word entered the English language in the 14th century. 
The use of the term promotion to refer to "advertising or publicity" is very modern and is first recorded in 1925. It may be a contraction of a related term, sales promotion, which is one element in the larger set of tools used in marketing communications. The terms, promotion and marketing communications can be used synonymously, but in practice, the latter is more widely used.