Services Marketing Chapter 5

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Inadequate Customer Research Orientation
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-Insufficient customer research -Research not focused on service quality -Inadequate use of marketing research
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Lack of Upward Communication
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-Lack of interaction between management and customers -Insufficient communication between contact employees and managers -Too many layers between contact personnel and top management
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Insufficient Relationship Focus
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-Lack of market segmentation -Focus on transactions rather than relationships -Focus on new customers rather than relationship customers
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Inadequate Service Recovery
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-Lack of encouragement to listen to customer complaints -Failure to make amends when things go wrong -No appropriate recovery mechanisms in place for service failures
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Common Research Objectives for Services
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-To discover customer requirements or expectations for service. -To monitor and track service performance. -To assess overall company performance compared with that of competition. -To determine customer expectations for a new service. -To monitor changing customer expectations in an industry. -To forecast future expectations of customers.
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Criteria for an Effective Service Research Program
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-Includes both qualitative and quantitative research -Includes both expectations and perceptions of customers -Balances the cost of the research and the value of the information -Includes statistical validity when necessary -Measures priorities or importance of attributes -Occurs with appropriate frequency -Includes measures of loyalty, behavioral intentions, or actual behavior
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Portfolio of Service Research
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-Trailer Calls or Post transaction Surveys -Service Expectations Meetings and Reviews -Process Checkpoint Evaluations -Mystery Shopping -Customer Panels -Lost Customer Research -SERVQUAL surveys
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Common means for answering questions
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-Ask customers directly -Observing customers -Get information from employees and front line serving providers -Database Marketing Research
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Ask Customers Directly:
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Mail, phone, face-to-face, online, one-on-one, in groups, formal/informally
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Observing Customers
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Anthropological tools, qualitative depth
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Database Marketing Research
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Use customer information files, “capture” behavior through data analysis
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Effective Customer Research For Complaint Solicitation:
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-To identify and attend to dissatisfied customers -To identify common service failure points
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Effective Customer Research For Critical Incident Studies:
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-To identify “best” practices at transaction level -To identify customer requirements as input for quantitative studies -To identify common service failure points -To identify systemic strengths and weaknesses in customer-contact services
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Effective Customer Research For Relationship Surveys:
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-To monitor and track service performance -To assess overall company performance compared with that of competition -To determine links between satisfaction and behavioral intentions -To assess gaps between customer expectations and perceptions
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Effective Customer Research For Post-transaction Surveys:
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-To obtain immediate feedback on performance of service transactions -To measure effectiveness of changes in service delivery -To assess service performance of individuals and teams -To use as input for process improvements; to identify common service failure points
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Effective Customer Research For Social Media:
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-To identify/attend to dissatisfied customers -To encourage word of mouth -To measure the impact of other advertising
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Effective Customer Research for Market-Oriented ethnography:
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-To research customers in natural settings -To study customers from other cultures in an unbiased way
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Effective Customer Research for Mystery Shopping:
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-To Measure individual employee performance for evaluation, recognition, or rewards -To identify systemic strengths and weaknesses in customer-contact services
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Effective Customer Research for Customer Panels:
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-To monitor changing customer expectations -To provide a forum for customers to suggest and evaluate new service ideas
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Effective Customer Research for Lost customer research:
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-To identify reasons for customer defection -To assess gaps between customer expectations and perceptions
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Effective Customer Research for Future Expectations Research:
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-To forecast future expectations of customers -To develop and test new services
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Sample Questions for Critical Incident Studies
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-Think of a time when, as a customer, you had a particularly satisfying (dissatisfying) interaction with an employee of ______________. -When did the incident happen? -What specific circumstances led up to this situation? -Exactly what was said and done? -What resulted that made you feel the interaction was satisfying (dissatisfying)?
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SERVQUAL Attributes
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Reliability Responsiveness Assurance Empathy Tangibles
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Reliability:
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-Providing service as promised -Dependability in handling customers’ service problems -Performing services right the first time -Providing services at the promised time -Maintaining error-free records
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Responsiveness
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-Keeping customers informed as to when services will be performed -Prompt service to customers -Willingness to help customers -Readiness to respond to customers’ requests
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Assurance
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-Employees who instill confidence in customers -Making customers feel safe in their transactions -Employees who are consistently courteous -Employees who have the knowledge to answer customer questions
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Empathy
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-Giving customers individual attention -Employees who deal with customers in a caring fashion -Having the customer’s best interest at heart -Employees who understand the needs of their customers -Convenient business hours
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Tangibles
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-Modern equipment -Visually appealing facilities -Employees who have a neat, professional appearance -Visually appealing materials associated with the service
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Research for Upward Communication
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-Executive visits to customers -Executive or management listening to customers -Research on intermediate customers -Research on internal customers -Executive or management listening approaches to employees -Employee suggestions

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