In this services marketing workshop summary, key theory concepts of the five presentations will be briefly discussed and two or three aspects of what the rest four groups did well and what they did poorly in each presentation will be pointed out. Key Theory Concepts & Evaluation of Presentations
Presentation 1: Kiwi Experience
The key theory concepts covered in this presentation are:
* Differences between goods and services
There are eight differences between goods and services according to Lovelock et al. (2007). 1. Most service products cannot be inventoried.
“Because services involve actions or performances, they are ephemeral-transitory and perishable- and so cannot usually be stocked as inventory following production (Lovelock et al., 2007)”. 2. Intangible elements usually dominate value creation.
“Tangible elements such as processes, internet-based transactions, and the expertise and attitudes of service personnel create the most value in service performances (Lovelock et al., 2007)”. Customers cannot taste, smell or touch these elements making them have difficulties in accessing to the service features. Therefore, marketers try their efforts to highlight service benefits and demonstrate the firm’s competencies to make service more tangible. 3. Services are often difficult to visualize and evaluate. “Many services can be described as ‘mentally intangible’, meaning that it’s difficult for customers to visualize the experience in advance of purchase and to understand what they will be getting (Lovelock et al., 2007)”. Well-trained salespeople or customer service representatives can reduce the uncertainty or perceived risks of purchase for new customers. 4. Customers may be involved in co-production.
“With the increasing emphasis on customer co-production, many technology of smart machines, telecommunications and the internet are popular. Customers are expected to cooperate with service personnel in settings such as hair salons, hotels quick-service restaurants and libraries, even doing some of the work yourself rather than being waited on (Lovelock et al., 2007)”. 5. People may be part of the service experience.
“Well-managed firms devote special care to selecting, training, and motivating the people who will be responsible for serving customers directly. In addition to possessing the technical skills required by the job, these individuals also need to possess good interpersonal skills and to display positive attitudes (Lovelock et al., 2007)”. In this way, service firms can ensure the quality service deliver and shape customer behaviors. 6. Operational inputs and outputs tend to vary more widely. “A service is delivered directly and consumed at the same time, and it varies widely depend on different employees and customers. Service execution often differs among employees, between the same employee and different customers, and even from one time of day to another (Lovelock et al., 2007)”. Therefore, it’s hard or even impossible to shield customers from service failures, which is the major concern causing low productivity and quality control among service firms. 7. The time factor often assumes great importance.
“Customers may be willing to pay extra to save time, such as taking a taxi when a city bus serves the same route, or to get a needed task performed faster (Lovelock et al., 2007)”. How much time elapses between making a request for service and receiving the finished output is another concern of customers.
8. Distribution may take place through non-physical channels. A majority of service information-based businesses tend to delivered services through electronic channels rather than physical channels such as the Internet or voice telecommunications. * Services classification
Services can be classified into seven ways:
1. The degree of tangibility/ intangibility of service processes. Lovelock et al....