Post-purchase behavior Post-purchase behavior involves all the consumers' activities and the experiences that follow the purchase. Usually, after making a purchase, consumers experience post-purchase dissonance. In other words, they regret their purchase decision. The reasons for high post-purchase dissonance can be attractiveness and performance of forgone alternatives, difficult purchase decision, large number of alternatives, etc. A high level of post-purchase dissonance is negatively related to the level of satisfaction the consumer draws out of product usage. While experiencing post-purchase dissonance, consumers become acutely aware of the marketers' communication. To reduce post-purchase dissonance, consumers may sometimes even return or exchange the product. Marketers, therefore, can use these opportunities to reduce consumers' risk perception by way of good return/exchange policies and reduce their post-purchase dissonance by messages targeted at this segment of their consumers. Consumers' retail store selection behavior depends on - store image Despite post-purchase dissonance, many consumers proceed with consumption of the product. How consumers use the products is an important knowledge source for marketers, as they can offer better products and reach more consumers based on these consumer usage patterns. In some cases, however, consumers initially use the product but after a period of time fail to do so. Marketers, therefore, should not consider a product purchased as a product consumed. A non-used product is also more likely to affect the repurchase pattern of the consumers negatively. Consumers need to dispose off the products or packaging before, during, or after the use. The issue of disposal is gaining considerable importance for marketers as it directly affects the repurchase pattern of the consumers. As more and more products are consumed and disposed off, it is likely that repurchase will also be more. Many a time, consumers cannot repurchase without disposing off the product first, due to space and financial constraints. Thus, many marketers, especially retailers, are helping consumers to dispose off their old products. This not only gives consumers a reason to repurchase but also increases marketers' sales. The disposal options the consumers have are - keep the product, temporarily dispose off, or permanently dispose off. Product use/consumption is followed by its evaluation, which may then lead to satisfaction (perceived performance > minimum desired expectations); non-satisfaction (perceived performance = minimum desired expectations); or dissatisfaction (perceived performance < minimum desired expectations). Consumer dissatisfaction may result in complaint behavior. Consumers may choose to take action against the marketer/service provider by way of warning friends, returning the product, boycotting and brand switching, complaining to the marketer, complaining to the relevant government/non-government bodies, and/or taking legal action against marketers/service provider. Marketers should try to use consumer complaints as a way of assessing their performance as perceived by their consumers and should use this opportunity to delight them by showing their commitment to consumer service. Many marketers are actively seeking consumer feedback to improve their products and service quality with a view to retaining their existing consumers and attracting new ones. They have identified consumer retention as a major concern, as research has shown that even satisfied consumers can't be termed as loyalists and often switch to competing brands to get a better deal. Marketers thus, have identified the quality of product and service as the parameter to evaluate consumers' intention to repurchase instead of their level of satisfaction. Only totally satisfied and committed consumers are recognized as brand loyalists. Brand loyal consumers not only spread positive word-of-mouth for the brand but are also less likely to switch to other brands. Marketers are increasingly indulging in loyalty marketing to increase consumer retention, with various schemes and discount offers for their high value regular consumers. However, many observers believe that these kinds of tactics, if not implemented properly, can fail to deliver what they initially promised, resulting in frustrated consumers. Others also believe that marketers should classify their consumers on the basis of their satisfaction thresholds and then treat each group differently.
Example:Positive post purchase behavior This is where the the consumer holds a positive feedback about the product and happy with the product quality. When there is positive post purchase behavior he will engage in repeat purchases and spread positive word of mouth about the product encouraging others people to buy the product. As an example if the customer is happy with the performance of the mobile phone he will recommend his friends to purchase the same brand of mobile phone. Negative post purchase behavior This is where the customer is dissatisfied with the product and holds a negative feedback about the product. This will result in bad word of mouth about the product. Organizations should always try to avoid negative post purchase behaviors. If the customer is not happy with the mobile phone he will persuade is friends not to buy mobile phones of that brand. Customer Delight When a brand meets customer expectations, it is ensuring customer satisfaction. However, when customers gets value or benefits beyond what they had expected, the brand has ensured customer delight. Common sense suggests that a delighted customer would be more loyal to your brand than a satisfied customer. Customer delight, in most cases, is not about better product performance. Consumers have a certain degree of functional expectation from a brand and, in most cases, the brand is likely to deliver a level of performance pretty close to that expected by the customer. This is precisely the reason why functional parameters have ceased to be meaningful differentiators for customers to choose one brand over the other. So what is customer delight all about? How does a brand ensure customer delight? Customer Delight is about demonstrating and providing a set of tangible and intangible benefits beyond the functional features, a combination of which provides value beyond what the customer had expected to receive from the brand. E.g. quality of customer service, quality of customer support staff, design differentiators of the brand [e.g. Apple], etc. It is important to recognize that customer delight is a moving target. It is not a fixed benchmark to be achieved. As competition intensifies and responds, the power of some benefits to act as differentiators gets diluted or erased. Brands therefore have to constantly monitor customer satisfaction and delight levels in relation to competitive offerings and then create more and innovative value propositions for customers to continue to feel delighted. Often entrepreneurs take the easy route of providing higher value through lower price. However, not only is there no guarantee of it being a sustainable advantage (because it is replicable by other players too) but it also strips the brand of much needed profitability to create and sustain alternate benefits. Consumers don’t necessarily look for cheaper. They look for higher value. Apart from a sensible price point, customers look at brand imagery, service and other intangible parameters for selecting between brands. For a brand that seeks to provide ever increasing service levels and standards, competing on price will seriously limit its ability to invest in technology and resources to provide the desired service levels. • Copywriting
Copywriting is the act of writing copy (text) for the purpose of advertising or marketing a product, business, person, opinion or idea. The addressee (reader, listener, etc.) of the copy is meant to be persuaded to buy the product advertised for, or subscribe to the viewpoint the text shares.
Copywriters are used to help create direct mail pieces, taglines, jingle lyrics, web page content (although if the purpose is not ultimately promotional, its author might prefer to be called a content writer), online ads, email and other Internet content, television or radio commercial scripts, press releases, white papers, catalogs, billboards, brochures, postcards, sales letters, and other marketing communications media. Copy can also appear in social media content including blog posts, tweets, and social-networking site posts. Copywriters Most copywriters are employees within organizations such as advertising agencies, public relationsfirms, company advertising departments, large stores, marketing firms, broadcasters and cable providers, newspapers, book publishers and magazines. Copywriters can also be independent contractors who freelance for a variety of clients, at the clients' offices or working from their own, or partners or employees in a specialized copywriting agency.  Such agencies combine copywriting services with a range of editorial and associated services that may include positioning and messaging consulting, social media and SEO consulting, developmental editing, and copy editing, proofreading, fact checking, layout, and design. A copywriting agency most often serves large corporations. Internet The Internet has expanded the range of copywriting opportunities to include web content, ads, emails and other online media. It has also brought new opportunities for copywriters to learn their craft, conduct research and view others' work. The Internet has also made it easier for employers, copywriters and art directors to find each other. SEO Content writing on websites may include among its objectives the achievement of higher rankings insearch engines. Known as "organic" search engine optimization (SEO),  this practice involves thestrategic placement and repetition of keywords and keyword phrases on web pages, writing in a manner that human readers would consider normal.
Develop direct marketing plan for marketer of cosmetics in India
Introduction We discussed some of the changes taking place in channels of distribution. It was suggested that one of the growth areas of channels has been direct marketing. The term ‘direct marketing’ was first coined by Leslie Wunderman in 1961 following work he had done with American Express and Columbia Records. However, the principles of mail order catalogue marketing, which was an early form of direct marketing, can be traced back to Europe in the fifteenth century following Gutenberg’s invention of type and production of trade catalogues from printer publishers. The principal feature of direct marketing is that it sends messages direct to consumers and not via intervening media. This involves the use of direct mail, email and telemarketing through business to consumers (B2C) and business to business (B2B) communications that are normally unsolicited. It attempts to persuade customers to make purchases that emphasize explicitly a ‘call-to-action’ that involves a prominent message to gain a positive measurable and trackable response from potential customers. Direct marketing is a pro-active approach to marketing that takes the product or service to potential customers rather than waiting for them to come to a store or other point of access. It is a form of ‘nonshop’ shopping and is sometimes referred to as ‘precision marketing’ or ‘one-to-one’ marketing. Rather than the marketing firm sending out a general communication or sales message to a large group of potential customers, even if these constitute well-defined market segments, direct marketing tends to target specific individuals or households. In a B2B context this would be an individual or a specific organization. Direct marketing is not just concerned with marketing communications. It is also concerned with distribution. In using direct marketing, the firm is making a choice to cut out the use of marketing intermediaries and sell the product or service direct to customers. This has implications for both channels of distribution and logistical decisions. Direct marketing comes in a variety of forms. It is one of the fastest growing areas of marketing and is being propelled by technical advances, particularly in the field of computer technology and the worldwide web (www). It has been taken up with enthusiasm in a wide variety of contexts .This medium of communication is not new, as many companies have sold products direct to the public for many years. For example, Kleeneze was established in 1923 by Harry Crook in Bristol. Another long established direct marketer is Avon Cosmetics, established over 120 years ago by David McConnell as the California Perfume company. Direct mail through the post and mail order catalogues has been utilized for a long time and all are forms of direct marketing. Direct marketing originated in the early 1900s and the Direct Marketing Association (DMA) was established in the USA in 1917. It became an important force in the UK in the 1950s, but at this stage of its development it was generally concerned with direct mail, mail order and door-to-door personal selling. Today the scope of direct marketing has
expanded dramatically largely due to the use of the telephone and in particular the use of the Internet. Its scope includes all marketing communications elements that allow an organization to communicate directly with prospective customers, or prospects. This includes direct mail, telephone marketing, direct response advertising, door-to-door personal selling and the Internet. •
Sales quota and sales territory go hand in hand
Love them or hate them, sales positions and quotas go hand in hand. While most every sales professional is assigned a quota, many do not understand how they are formulated, why they are important and how having a full understanding of your quota can be a major factor in your success in your sales career. Quotas from the Management Side Management see sales quotas as both a tool for forecasting and for holding their sales professionals accountable. Without assigned quotas, reps have no formalized revenue or activity targets to shoot for and management is weakened without the ability to reference an objective expectation that both the managers and the reps agree to. And while reps may not necessarily agree with their assigned quotas, most employers include acknowledging any assigned sales quota as a requirement to employment. This acknowledgement means that the employed sales professional understands that he will be expected to produce at least his assigned quota and that management has the right to expect their reps to deliver assigned quotas. Quotas are not, however, purely a means for management to hold their employees accountable. Quotas are also used as a measurement tool to estimate and predict how much revenue can and should be expected from each rep or account base. While management often inflates the assigned quotas when compared to their estimates, quotas are (usually) grounded in reality and based off reasonable expectations. How Most Quotas are Formulated If you work for a sales company that has multiple sales territories or product lines, your assigned quota is likely the result of past performances, market share and market data. While these may seem a bit confusing, understand that for almost any industry, independent reports are available that describe the total opportunity for each market area and are often purchased by sales companies who need to better understand how best to market, position and sell their products or services.For newly formed sales companies, assigning quotas is much more of an optimistic approach since they lack key indicators like past performances, but the vast majority of assigned quotas are not random and are based on research and evidence. The Importance of Quotas Quotas are important for several reasons. First, they do give management a measuring vehicle against which they can judge the performance of their sales representatives. Secondly, quotas provide valuable feedback for management that aids in their forecasting requirements. Third, quotas are often used as part of a sales professionals compensation plan. Many comp plans include over-achievement bonuses that reward reps who exceed their assigned quotas and some comp plans include a variable pay-range that increases the closer a rep is to assigned quota. • What is a brand
Brands are different from products in a way that brands are “what the consumers buy”, while products are “what concern/companies make”. Brand is an accumulation of emotional and functional associations. Brand is a promise that the product will perform as per customer’s expectations. It shapes customer’s expectations about the product. Brands usually have a trademark which protects them from use by others. A brand gives
particular information about the organization, good or service, differentiating it from others in marketplace. Brand carries an assurance about the characteristics that make the product or service unique. A strong brand is a means of making people aware of what the company represents and what are its offerings. To a consumer, brand means and signifies:
Source of product Delegating responsibility to the manufacturer of product Lower risk Less search cost Quality symbol Deal or pact with the product manufacturer Symbolic device
Brands simplify consumers purchase decision. Over a period of time, consumers discover the brands which satisfy their need. If the consumers recognize a particular brand and have knowledge about it, they make quick purchase decision and save lot of time. Also, they save search costs for product. Consumers remain committed and loyal to a brand as long as they believe and have an implicit understanding that the brand will continue meeting their expectations and perform in the desired manner consistently. As long as the consumers get benefits and satisfaction from consumption of the product, they will more likely continue to buy that brand. Brands also play a crucial role in signifying certain product features to consumers. To a seller, brand means and signifies: • • • • • • Basis of competitive advantage Way of bestowing products with unique associations Way of identification to easy handling Way of legal protection of products’ unique traits/features Sign of quality to satisfied customer Means of financial returns
A brand, in short, can be defined as a seller’s promise to provide consistently a unique set of characteristics, advantages, and services to the buyers/consumers. It is a name, term, sign, symbol or a combination of all these planned to differentiate the goods/services of one seller or group of sellers from those of competitors. Some examples of well known brands are Mc Donald’s’, Mercedes-Benz, Sony, Coca Cola, Kingfisher, etc. A brand connects the four crucial elements of an enterprise- customers, employees, management and shareholders. Brand is nothing but an assortment of memories in customers mind. Brand represents values, ideas and even personality. It is a set of functional, emotional and rational associations and benefits which have occupied target market’s mind. Associations are nothing but the images and symbols associated with the brand or brand benefits, such as, The Nike Swoosh, The Nokia sound, etc. Benefits are the basis for purchase decision. Brand personality must be differentiated from brand image, in sense that, while brand image denote the tangible (physical and functional) benefits and attributes of a brand, brand personality indicates emotional associations of the brand. If brand image is comprehensive brand according to consumers’ opinion, brand personality is that aspect of comprehensive brand which generates it’s emotional character and associations in consumers’ mind.
Brand personality develops brand equity. It sets the brand attitude. It is a key input into the look and feel of any communication or marketing activity by the brand. It helps in gaining thorough knowledge of customers feelings about the brand. Brand personality differentiates among brands specifically when they are alike in many attributes. For instance - Sony versus Panasonic. Brand personality is used to make the brand strategy lively, i.e, to implement brand strategy. Brand personality indicates the kind of relationship a customer has with the brand. It is a means by which a customer communicates his own identity. Brand personality and celebrity should supplement each other. Trustworthy celebrity ensures immediate awareness, acceptability and optimism towards the brand. This will influence consumers’ purchase decision and also create brand loyalty. For instance - Bollywood actress Priyanka Chopra is brand ambassador for J.Hampstead, international line of premium shirts. Brand personality not only includes the personality features/characteristics, but also the demographic features like age, gender or class and psychographic features. Personality traits are what the brand exists for.
Significance of branding strategy with special reference to service organization of your choice
The Importance of Branding One of the truths of modern business is that there is almost nothing that your competitors can't duplicate in a matter of weeks or months. If you have a great idea, you can be certain that somebody will copy it before long. And not only will they follow your lead, but they may also be able to do a better job or sell the product or service at a lower price. The question then becomes, "What competitive edge do I have to offer that cannot be copied by anyone else?" The answer? Your brand. Creating a strong brand identity will build mind share — one of the strongest competitive advantages imaginable. As a result, customers will think of your business first when they think of your product category. For example, when you think of tissues, more likely than not, you think of the Kleenex brand. And when you're looking for tape to wrap a present, Scotch is the brand that springs to mind. Likewise, when your child wants a hamburger, he will often say he wants to go to McDonald's. The reason behind these strong brandproduct associations is that these companies have built rock solid brand identities. "A brand is the one thing that you can own that nobody can take away from you," says Howard Kosgrove, vice principal of marketing at Lindsay, Stone and Briggs Advertising in Madison, Wis. "Everything else, they can steal. They can steal your trade secrets. Eventually, your patents will expire. Your physical plant will wear out. Technology will change. But your brand can go on and live. It creates a lasting value above and beyond all the other elements of your business." That value is often called brand equity, or the worth of the brand. Brand equity, unlike other abstract marketing notions, can be quantified. For instance, if you owned the Marlboro Company and wanted to sell it, you would begin to value the firm by looking at the assets tied to the Marlboro brand. You would then identify the cost of the factories, patents, trucks, machines and staff." They are worth a small fraction of what you can sell that brand for," says Kosgrove. "The value of that brand is huge compared to those actual physical assets." The importance and value of branding becomes apparent when an entrepreneur wants to sell his or her company or take it to Wall Street for a public offering or other infusion of capital. It is often the brand that a business owner has to sell in such cases.
When Should You Brand? Because of the competitive nature of business today, nearly all industries can benefit from a branded product. All of the traditionally brand-conscious industries, including fashion, restaurants and consumer goods, are being forced to continue to brand heavily — perhaps even more strategically than they ever have in the past. Financial services, which were one of the last frontiers, are even beginning to see the importance of branding by tagging banking packages and even mutual funds with catchy names. Even industrial markets, where cost is usually more of a loyalty building factor, has seen brand names creep in. For example, Tyvek, a DuPont fiber, improbably one of the best known industrial branded products. Other industries in which branding is a must include:
• • • • • • • • •
Fast food High-tech Beverages Packaged Goods Petroleum Entertainment Retail Auto Pharmaceutical Define services? What are the service characteristics? List ten major service industries.
The world economy nowadays is increasingly characterized as a service economy. This is primarily due to the increasing importance and share of the service sector in the economies of most developed and developing countries. In fact, the growth of the service sector has long been considered as indicative of a country’s economic progress. Economic history tells us that all developing nations have invariably experienced a shift from agriculture to industry and then to the service sector as the main stay of the economy. This shift has also brought about a change in the definition of goods and services themselves. No longer are goods considered separate from services. Rather, services now increasingly represent an integral part of the product and this interconnectedness of goods and services is represented on a goods-services continuum. Definition and characteristics of Services The American Marketing Association defines services as - “Activities, benefits and satisfactions which are offered for sale or are provided in connection with the sale of goods.” The defining characteristics of a service are: Intangibility: Services are intangible and do not have a physical existence. Hence services cannot be touched, held, tasted or smelt. This is most defining feature of a service and that which primarily differentiates it from a product. Also, it poses a unique challenge to those engaged in marketing a service as they need to attach tangible attributes to an otherwise intangible offering. 1. Heterogeneity/Variability: Given the very nature of services, each service offering is unique and cannot be exactly repeated even by the same service provider. While products can be mass produced and be homogenous the same is not true of services. eg: All burgers of a particular flavor at McDonalds are almost identical. However, the same is not true of the service rendered by the same counter staff consecutively to two customers.
2. Perishability: Services cannot be stored, saved, returned or resold once they have been used. Once rendered to a customer the service is completely consumed and cannot be delivered to another customer. eg: A customer dissatisfied with the services of a barber cannot return the service of the haircut that was rendered to him. At the most he may decide not to visit that particular barber in the future. 3. Inseparability/Simultaneity of production and consumption: This refers to the fact that services are generated and consumed within the same time frame. Eg: a haircut is delivered to and consumed by a customer simultaneously unlike, say, a takeaway burger which the customer may consume even after a few hours of purchase. Moreover, it is very difficult to separate a service from the service provider. Eg: the barber is necessarily a part of the service of a haircut that he is delivering to his customer. Types of Services 1. Core Services: A service that is the primary purpose of the transaction. Eg: a haircut or the services of lawyer or teacher. 2. Supplementary Services: Services that are rendered as a corollary to the sale of a tangible product. Eg: Home delivery options offered by restaurants above a minimum bill value. List ten major service industries. • Indian Oil Corporation Ltd • Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Ltd • Reliance Industries Ltd • Tata Motors Ltd • Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd • Tata Steel Ltd • State Bank of India • Hindalco Industries Ltd • Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd • ICICI Bank Ltd •
Explain the GAP model of service quality
The Gap model of service quality was developed by Parasuraman, Berry and Zeithaml (1985), and more recently described in Zeithaml and Bitner (2003). It has served as a framework for research in services marketing, including hospitality marketing, for over two decades. The model identifies four specific gaps leading to a fifth overall gap between customers’ expectations and perceived service. The five gaps Customers have expectations for service experiences and they use them to measure against the perceived service performance in their judgment of service quality. It is essential, then, that managers determine what those expectations are when designing the service. The first gap in service quality occurs when management fails to accurately identify customer expectations. It is referred to as the knowledge gap. Specifically, it is the difference in customer expectations and management’s perception of customer expectations. Hotel managers, for instance, must know and understand what their guests expect from their stay, including all tangibles (the room, amenities, lobby features) and intangible components (availability of additional services, ease of check-in and check-out procedures). The size of the gap is dependent on the extent of upward communication (from customers to top management), the number of layers of management, the size of the organization, and most importantly, the extent of marketing research to identify customer expectations.
The second gap is referred to as the design gap. It is measured by how well the service design specifications match up to management’s perception of customer expectations. The extent of this gap is dependent on management’s belief that service quality is important and that it is possible, as well as the resources that are available for the provision of the service. A restaurant manager may understand customer expectations for being served within 20 minutes of ordering, but may not have the resources or the appropriate number of staff to insure that speed of service. Gap 3 represents the variation in service design and service delivery. Known as the performance gap, its extent is a function of many variables involved in the provision of service. Since individuals perform the service, the quality may be affected by such factors as skill level, type of training received, degree of role congruity or conflict, and job fit. Some service providers do not have a high service inclination, despite training. Service recovery efforts along with extent of responsibility and empowerment also affect the size of this gap. The process is further complicated by the customer’s participation in the service encounter. A customer may make a special request for a room type different from the one originally reserved, or request a menu item after the initial order has been completed, making it more difficult to perform the service as intended. The fourth gap is called the communications gap. It is the difference between what is promised to customers, either explicitly or implicitly, and what is being delivered. Hospitality companies use advertising, personal selling, and sales promotion to inform, persuade, and remind guests about its products and services. Showing beautifully appointed hotel rooms, refreshing swimming pools, and luxurious lobby areas in an advertisement communicates to the target customers. The extent of communications between the company and the advertising agencies will affect the size of the gap. Overpromising is commonly responsible for the communication gap. Each gap has a cumulative effect from the preceding gaps. Gap 5 is the total accumulation of variation in Gaps 1 through 4 and represents the difference between expectations and perceived service. Furthermore, consumers evaluate perceived service along five quality dimensions. Dimensions of service quality Service quality dimensions refer to the psychological dimensions that form the basis of a customer’s perceived quality of a service. While numerous marketing researchers have attempted to define the specific dimensions of service quality, Parasuraman, Berry, and Zeithaml (1985) introduced the definition in their presentation of the Gap Model of Service Quality. They proposed that five specific dimensions of service quality exist and apply regardless of the service industry: reliability, responsiveness, assurance, empathy, and tangibles. The most important service quality dimension to customers is reliability. Reliability is defined as the ability to perform the promised service dependably and accurately. In other words, it means doing what you say you will do. Customers have consistently stated that a company’s ability to deliver promises is the most vital factor to providing service quality. Having a room ready upon check-in is an example of the reliability dimension. Responsiveness is the willingness to help customers and to provide prompt service. Customers judge a company’s responsiveness by assessing the amount of time it takes and the attentiveness that is offered in response to their requests, questions, complaints, and problems. Companies that use automated phone systems, regularly put customers on hold, or consistently have long wait times or long lines tend to be rated low on the responsiveness dimension. Responding quickly to requests or complaints leads to a higher rating on this dimension. The third dimension of service quality is assurance. Assurance is defined as employees’ knowledge and courtesy and the ability of the firm and its employees to inspire trust and confidence. The assurance dimension is particularly important in service industries offering high levels of credence qualities, such as auto repair and medical services. The importance of the assurance dimension increases in proportion to the risk, and the greater the inability for a customer to evaluate the service.