Service Characteristics of Hospitality and Tourism Marketing

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Chapter 2 Service Characteristics of Hospitality and Tourism Marketing OBJECTIVES:
Describe a service culture.
Identify four service characteristics that affect the marketing of a hospitality or travel product. Explain marketing strategies that are useful in the hospitality and travel industries. Ritz-Carlton is renowned for outstanding service.

othe chain of eighty-five luxury hotels around the world, caters to the top 5 percent of corporate & leisure travelers In surveys of departing guests, some 95 percent report they’ve had a truly memorable experience. At Ritz-Carlton, exceptional service encounters

have become almost commonplace.
owhen Nancy & Harvey Heffner’s son became sick, hotel staff brought him hot tea & honey at all hours of the night Such personal, high-quality service has also made the Ritz-Carlton a favorite among conventioneers. Since incorporation in 1983, Ritz-Carlton Company has received all the major awards hospitality industry & consumer organizations bestow. Rewards are important, and at Ritz-Carlton, service quality has resulted in high customer retention: omore than 90 percent of Ritz-Carlton customers return

odespite hefty room rates, the chain enjoys occupancy
rates at 70%, almost 9 points above industry average
Most of the responsibility for keeping guests satisfied falls to Ritz-Carlton’s customer-contact employees. Ritz-Carlton instills a sense of pride in its employees. o“You serve,” they are told, “but you are not servants.” othe company motto states, “We are ladies and gentlemen serving ladies and gentlemen.” To ensure guest satisfaction, no detail is too small.

ocustomer-contact people are taught to greet guests warmly and sincerely, using guests’ names when possible, to answer the phone within three rings, with a “smile” oemployees are urged to escort a guest to another area

of the hotel rather than pointing out directions
opride and care in personal appearance is emphasized
Marketing initially developed in connection with selling physical products. Today, a major trend is swift growth of services,
or products with little or no physical content.
oin most developed countries, services account for
a majority of the gross domestic product (GDP)
oin developing countries a majority of nonagricultural workers are often employed in hospitality and travel Growth of service industries has created a demand for research into their operation and marketing. Some managers think of their operations only in terms of tangible goods. omanagers of fast-food restaurants who think they sell

only hamburgers may have “slow, surly service personnel, dirty unattractive facilities, and few return customers.” A most important task of a hospitality business is
to develop the “service” side of the business.
ospecifically, a strong service culture
Service culture focuses on serving & satisfying the customer, starts with top management & flows down. Service marketers must be concerned with four characteristics of services: ointangibility, inseparability, variability, and perishability Intangibility

Unlike physical products, services cannot be seen, tasted, felt, heard, or smelled before purchase. oprior to boarding, airline passengers have nothing but
a ticket & promise of safe delivery to their destination
oa sales force cannot take a hotel room with them on
a sales call, and when guests leave, they have nothing
to show for the purchase but a receipt
Robert Lewis observed that someone who purchases a service may go away empty-handed, but they do not go away empty-headed. othey have memories that can be shared with others
To reduce uncertainty caused by service intangibility, buyers look for tangible evidence that will provide information and confidence about the service. otangibles provide signals as to the quality of the

intangible service
ocondition of the grounds & overall cleanliness
provide clues as to...
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