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material) since you can touch it and own it. A service tends to be an experience that is consumed at the point where it is purchased, and cannot be owned since is quickly perishes. Nature of a service : Inseparable - from the point where it is consumed, and from the provider of the service. Perishable - in that once it has occurred it cannot be repeated in exactly the same way. Variability- since the human involvement of service provision means that no two services will be completely identical. Right of ownership - is not taken to the service, since you merely experience it Services are all around us- as consumers we use services every day. The growth in the service economy is widely recognized and increasingly contributes to the economic development of many regions. Although the service sector accounts for more new job growth in developed countries, the dominance of the service sector is not limited to highly developed nations. Many services like tourism sector, contribute very heavily to developing economies also. By their very nature, services are diverse and therefore have often been difficult to define. However there have been many attempts to describe services and there is an overall recognition of what they are and how they contribute to marketing offerings and the economy. The service marketing mix is also known as an extended marketing mix and is an integral part of a service blueprint design. The service marketing mix consists of 7 P’s as compared to the 4 P’s of a product marketing mix. Simply said, the service marketing mix assumes the service as a product itself. However it adds 3 more P’s which are required for optimum service delivery.
People – People is one of the elements of service marketing mix. Thus many companies nowadays are involved into specially getting their staff trained in interpersonal skills and customer service with a focus towards customer satisfaction. If you are into banking. your software engineers define you. If you have an IT company. A place where there is minimum traffic is a wrong location to start a petrol pump. Thus banks. Tourism industry or the education industry can be an excellent example. people can make or break an organization. In case of service marketing. Promotions and Placement. If you were a restaurant owner. service products cannot be measured. But then who will pay for the nice ambience you have built up for your customers? Who will pay for the band you have for music? Thus these elements have to be taken into consideration while costing. In 2 . and dotcoms place themselves above the rest by advertising or promotions. employees in your branch and their behavior towards customers defines you. For example – a restaurant blue print will be prepared before establishing a restaurant business. By adding a profit mark up you get your final service pricing. Here on we start towards the extended service marketing mix. The extended service marketing mix places 3 further P’s which include People.The product marketing mix consists of the 4 P’s which are Product. Similarly a software company will be better placed in a business hub with a lot of companies nearby rather than being placed in a town or rural area. Pricing. All of these factors are necessary for optimum service delivery. perishable and cannot beowned. Generally service pricing involves taking into consideration labor. If you have a restaurant. The best place to open up a petrol pump is on the highway or in the city. Services are easy to be duplicated and hence it is generally the brand which sets a service apart from its counterpart. Process and Physical evidence. Promotion – Promotions have become a critical factor in the service marketing mix. your chef and service staff defines you. Generally service blue printing is done to define the service product. This service blue print defines exactly how the product (in this case the restaurant) is going to be. At the same time service products are heterogenous. material cost and overhead costs. You will find a lot of banks and telecom companies promoting themselves rigorously. you can price people only for the food you are serving. The service product thus has to be designed with care.Place in case of services determine where is the service product going to be located. Product – The product in service marketing mix is intangible in nature. Like physical products such as a soap or a detergent. Pricing – Pricing in case of services is rather more difficult than in case of products. IT companies. Place . You can also read about pricing strategies. Why is that? It is because competition in this service sector is generally high and promotions is necessary to survive. People define a service.
Physical Evidence – The last element in the service marketing mix is a very important element. Take an example of a restaurant which has only chairs and tables and good food. to create a better customer experience tangible elements are also delivered with the service. a business where following a trend or a change is more important than the utility.fact many companies have to undergo accreditation to show that their staff is better than the rest. Which one will you prefer? The one with the nice ambience. physical evidence is used as a differentiator in service marketing. Definitely a USP in case of services. services are intangible in nature. Thus the process of a service company in delivering its product is of utmost importance. However. or a restaurant which has ambient lighting. As said before. Services in the Fashion Business We identify the fashion business commonly with products and more specifically with apparel and accessories and it was difficult to identify fashion services. For such a purpose. It is also a critical component in the service blueprint. Several times. the company defines exactly what should be the process of the service product reaching the end customer. Both the companies thrive on their quick service and the reason they can do that is their confidence on their processes. nice music along with good seating arrangement and this also serves good food. On top of it. Imagine a private hospital and a government hospital. A private hospital will have plush offices and well dressed staff. Process – Service process is the way in which a service is delivered to the end customer. Lets take the example of two very good companies – Mcdonalds and Fedex. we could include products which are purchased on the value they 3 . However. That’s physical evidence. the demand of these services is such that they have to deliver optimally without a loss in quality. wherein before establishing the service. Same cannot be said for a government hospital. a more fundamental and view of the fashion business could be defined as a business where trends are core to the business. Thus physical evidence acts as a differentiator.
Thus the fashion business could include apparel. A significant amount of pricing freedom exists for fashion services as compared to fashion products. If we look at the traditional 4Ps of marketing: Pricing: for services is more flexible. accessories. Services Marketing in the context of the fashion business Given our identification of some fashion business related services.have owing to the common trend being followed. 1 Styling: Services which help individuals / sets decide on what apparel will be appropriate t be worn towards a particular mood or situation 2 Custom Tailoring: Tailoring services for high fashion for example custom tailored Armani suits. home décor etc. based on perceived value than tangible products. Hence such service would also fall in the fashion business services. we will explore the 7Ps in the context of Services Marketing and Fashion business with respect to these examples of services so that the discussion may be more relevant and clear. Hence. 5 Spa/ Grooming services: Grooming/ spa treatments are also very trend specific and a lifestyle products. 3 Interior design: people love to keep changing the décor of their houses as per the latest trend. understanding this more fundamental definition of the fashion business. we could say that the following services are essentially “fashion” services. 4 Hair styling: hair is an essential fashion trend and hair styling is a service which is hence fundamentally a fashion business service. 4 . In that context home décor is in the fashion business and interior design is a fashion service.
People: Services and specially fashion services. sample packs or trial packs can be easily used for promotion. And people such as bollywood stars are key influencers. Promotion: While service promotion essentially means the same both for tangible products and intangible services. Two. Hence for fashion services. such a call center services. However in the case of services. place becomes even more important in case of services marketing. Process: The Fashion business is about uniqueness and exclusivity and hence fashion services also exude exclusivity and uniqueness. Hence. the promotion methods may be slightly different for services than for products. However in services promotion through trials will typically find greater conversion rates than for products.Product: In the case of services. One. Place: While the place is important in product marketing. and lower reach. and more specifically for fashion services. The best example of this is McDonalnds being able to 5 . product refers to a specific service. as for normal services. While there are services which can be delivered remotely. there are almost negligible services in the fashion business which can be delivered remotely. the quality and expertise of the service provider staff has a major impact on the service quality. Therefore fashion services must be able to replicate the exact same service experience each time the service is used by a customer. but also ones age group or peers or neighbors or even the kitty party group of housewife’s the crux / core of fashion means trend and trend is driven by some people following / imitating other choices. In the case of products. the people are a key for two reasons. only for the fashion business. For example a nail treatment at the spa could be called a product. 3 separate facial treatments could be called 3 products. people are key to trends. These could be both celebrities. the catchment area / target market is locally constrained. trial sessions have a greater marketing cost. since experience is a key ingredient of the fashion services businesses. especially for services. The ability to replicate / provide a consistent service experience can be made possible only by following stringent processes and attention to detail. For example. we can expand the definition of “People” in the context of fashion business service marketing to highlight the trend / fashion influencers. It is common in marketing terms to promote certain service packages as products.
For example you may get a good haircut at a local shop too. we could explore the 7Ps for each of the examples of fashion business mentioned in Part B. Physical Evidence: The Fashion business with its crux being about following trends is about inspirational products and services. People . Mostly pricing is dependent on the time the stylist is required to spend and the complexity of the brief. Price Pricing for styling completely depends on the experience and reputation of the stylists. but if you get a haircut more luxurious surroundings. P1 P2 P3 P4 Place Location of the stylist is not important since these services are typically provided at the customer location. 1 Styling Services Product In case of styling service. These are more of consulting services sold more on a time basis. P5 People This is the most important factor. Promotion Word of mouth promotion reigns for stylists. 6 . the overall experience is very different and this is what differentiates Fashion services. No variation across product types etc. This is a niche service and no volumes can be achieved. This is achieved by following processes which are common across the centers. We could say that physical evidence is exuded by the ambience of the surroundings and is more important in the fashion services business.provide not only the same service experience.i.e. the reputation of the stylist and his team is critical to styling services marketing. Styling agencies are essentially led by the reputed stylists. In the context of fashion business – A Shehnaz Hussein treatment across all the stores run by them is the same. there is not much differentiation in terms of product. but also the same product across the globe with the same standards (even though the human tongue is very sensitive). Such inspirational products and services are high lifestyle products and for lifestyle products the physical evidence is very very important. For the purpose of a greater exploration of the 7Ps in the context of Fashion Services businesses.
Process P6 While good styling is a very subjective. However the P7 physical evidence in terms of the end – product of those styling services is a powerful marketing method – since it provides high publicity – especially if it receives good reviews from critics – e. the importance of physical evidence is mitigated. process may not be so important after all. we can see that for this particular fashion service.g. Hence. 7 . hence there is no set process which is the best for styling. Physical Evidence Again.Secondly the client list of the stylist is itself a great promotion and marketing tool for the service provider. since all the services are delivered at the customer location. movie critics and self styled fashion police.
but otherwise the process value for tailoring may not be so significant as compared to others. there were some pricing norms for specific products. P3 P4 P5 People The quality and skill of the staff is extremely important to provide the desired quality of end product. P7 Physical Evidence The location and ambience at the tailoring front office does have an impact. i.e. Process P6 The process is important from a technical point of view. since the service requires several visits by the customer and hence customers usually prefer local service providers.2 P1 Custom Tailoring Product In case of custom tailoring service. custom tailoring in the ultra luxury market – i. With custom tailoring slowly dying out for day to day use. huge differentiation in terms of product and product types is possible for both men and women. Place Location is an important factor. custom tailored Armani suits – pricing is completely dependent on the reputation of the designer. Price Since custom tailoring was / is reasonably common for day to day clothes. since a majority of the tailoring process is not in the presence of the customer.e for P2 shirt / blouse / trousers / blazers. Promotion Custom tailoring attracts a very niche set of customers and hence promotion of such services is not very common as compared to other services. 8 .
However print ads and design fairs also help promote these services. P6 Process While good interior design is very subjective. When the customer P7 walks in the office of the interior designer. Promotion Interior design services are typically able to leverage on word of mount promotion. Price Pricing for interior design completely depends on the experience and reputation of the interior designor. all the services are delivered at the customer location.3 Interior Design Product In case of interior service. the importance of physical evidence is significant. 9 . No variation across product types etc. in the interior design business the display of past projects works more in marketing its services. apart from the fact that is should be visible and accessible to its target customers. hence there is no set process which is established. Mostly pricing is dependent on the volume and complexity of the location. those interiors must display the capability of the interior designer which has a significant impact on customer decision making. there is not much differentiation in terms of product. These are more of consulting services sold on the basis of volume of work involved. Physical Evidence Though. Place The location of the company is not very important. P1 P2 P3 P4 P5 People More that people / staff . Interior design services and products can be delivered at the customer location.
i. Hence P2 hair styling ranges from Rs 10 to Rs 10000. There is a variation across styling products such as coloring streaking.4 Hair Styling Product In case of hair styling service. However. P5 People The Quality of the staff at the hair stylist is critical to providing a satisfactory service experience. perming. Place Location is extremely important. a majority of the P3 P4 customers prefer to do this at a place nearby their place of residence in which case the location determines both the revenue and the customer segment for the hair stylist. There is some differentiation across hairstyles too. Price Pricing for hair styling completely depends on the experience and payment capacity of the customer segment being targeted. Some frills in terms of the experience help differentiate in this business. Process Hair styling in different places follow essentially the same basic process.e child haircut. but in very speacilized cases such as streaking / coloring / perming and unique hairstyles. However hair styling chain do carry out limited print media promotion. there is not much differentiation in terms of product. While hair styling / cutting is a need it is also a fashion statement. female haircut vs male haircut. Promotion A majority of the hair stylists depend on word of mouth promotion. However the customer experience is enhanced through P6 add ons to the basic process such as addition of a hair wash or addition of a head massage to the hair styling process. the products may be defined based on P1 age and sex. P7 10 . curling etc. Physical Evidence This is an reasonably important factor and the physical evidence must reflect a basic level of hygiene which is acceptable to the target customer segement. Typically.
5 SPA Services Product In case of Spa services. print and digital media is alos popular with SPA chains picking up in the country. P3 P4 P5 P6 Process The process is essential for SPA services to ensure services experience across different locations. hence we see these being located in upmarket locations. more reasonable SPA services are also available. 11 . Besides this multiple products have been collated to provide packages. since the customer visits the SPA not only for the treatments but for the experience provided through its ambience. The range of premium demanded across SPAs can be huge. This productization helps increase revenue and provide specific services. Promotion Word of mouth promotion reigns for SPAs. However promotion through special packages. Place Location of the stylist is extremely important. However now with SPA P1 P2 service outside the luxury hotels. Price The SPA services traditionally being associated with 5 star and luxury hotels are typically priced high. Physical Evidence P7 This is one of the most important factors. It is extremely essential that the SPA is located close to its target customers. there are a huge number of separate services which have been productized. People The general quality of the staff at the SPA does make a difference and there are training colleges which help groom manpower in this space.
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