Market (@ Customer) Orientation

Dr. Prashant Mishra Indian Institute of Management Calcutta

Are You Any Different From others?


Don’t Forget….


The Real Test of Character Comes, When Things Start to Change…


Discipline of Market Leaders
The business must have competence and strength in these capacities: Market / Customer Orientation / Focus Product / Service innovation Operational excellence – The question that needs to be agreed upon is: What competency do we lead with?

Customer Orientation?
• It is not about Buying CRM Software that tracks purchases. • It is not about designing sophisticated new products/Services like Walkman / iPod / Online trading – Or even about processes that allow a car to be built with customerrequested features.

• Then Can You Guess, What It could be..?

What the Hell is “ Market Orientation”?

• How can I become Market Oriented? • Rocket Science : Probably NO • Prescription: Probably YES

GOLF – Easy to Hit The Ball – Hard To Master

Customer Orientation?
• It is about an Attitude that gets deep inside a company into what it is, what it does, and what it prides itself on.
• The Customer Intimate firms are constantly thinking about better, quicker, easier ways of doing things that customer need.

Three Characteristics
• Information on all important buying influences permeates every corporate function. • Strategic and tactical decisions are made inter-functionally and inter-divisionally. • Divisions and functions make wellcoordinated decisions and execute them with a sense of commitment. BUT WHAT DOES THIS MEAN…….?

Customer Focused Firms….!
• Customer Focused Firms Constantly Embraced three Concepts:
– They learn everything there is to learn about their customers at the most granular level, creating a comprehensive picture of each customer’s needs – Past, present and Future. – Second, they know that this picture is useless if employees can’t or won’t share what they learn about customers, either because it’s inconvenient or because it doesn’t serve their interest. – Finally, they use this insight to guide not only their product and service decisions but their basic strategy and organizational structure as well.

Customer Focused Firms….!
• Customer Focused Firms brings a different perspective:
– By discovering unsuspected problems. – By detecting unrealized potential. – By creating a dynamic synergy with the customers – By Looking Beyond Satisfaction Rut

Few Home Truths!
Hallmark cards failed when they were introduced in France. The French dislike syrupy sentiment and prefer writing their own cards. Philips began to earn a profit in Japan only after it had reduced the size of its coffeemakers to fit into smaller Japanese kitchens and its shavers to fit smaller Japanese hands. Coca-Cola had to withdraw its two-liter bottle in Spain after discovering that few Spaniards owned refrigerators with large enough compartments to accommodate it. General Foods’ Tang initially failed in France because it was positioned as a substitute for orange juice at breakfast. The French drink little orange juice and almost none at breakfast. Kellogg’s Pop-Tarts failed in Britain because the percentage of British homes with toasters was significantly lower than in the United States and the product was too sweet for British tastes.

What Do Customers Want?
The Difficult Question is How Do We Know What Customer Wants ? How Can We Fulfill What Customer Wants? Do They Even Know What They Need and What They Want? How Can We Make Sure that Customers Pick Our Product? Can We Influence Customers Decisions?

Are we easy to do business with?

• • • •

Easy to contact? Fast to provide information? Easy to order from? Make reasonable promises?

Do we keep our promises?
• • • • • On product performance? Delivery? Installation? Training? Service?

Do we meet the standards we set?
• Specifics? • General tone? • Do we even know the standards?

Are we responsive?
• • • • Do we listen? Do we follow up? Do we ask ‘why not’, not ‘why’? Do we treat customers as individual companies and individual people?

Do we work together?
• • • • Share blame? Share information? Make joint decisions? Provide satisfaction?

What Do Customers Want?
• A Relationship…
– – – – – – – – – Accessibility Promptness Follow-up Responsiveness Promises kept No surprises Knowledgeable people Kept informed Do it right

Plea From an Anonymous Customer
• Don’t Sell me Clothes, Sell me a sharp appearance, style and attractiveness. • Don’t Sell me a House, Sell me comfort, contentment, a good investment and a pride of ownership. • Don’t Sell me Toys, Sell my children happy moments. • Don’t Sell me Insurance, Sell me peace of mind, and a great future for my family and me. • Don’t Sell me Books, Sell me pleasant hours and the profits of knowledge. • Don’t Sell me Computers, Sell me the pleasure and profits of the miracles of modern technology.

The Moral is…..
• Don’t Sell me THINGS, Sell me Ideas, Feelings, Self-respect, Home, Life and Happiness.



Views on the Marketing Processes

5-C Analysis Customer Competitor Company Context Collaborators

S-T-P Marketing Segmentation Targeting Positioning

4 P’s Marketing Plan Product Pricing Promotion Place

The Functional View

Views on the Marketing Processes

Understanding Customer Value

Creating Customer Value

Capturing Customer Value

Delivering Customer Value

Sustaining Customer Value

The Process View

Understanding Customer Value



Customer Delivered Value

Total Customer Value

Total Customer Cost

Product Value

Monetary Cost

Services Value Personnel Value Image Value

Time Cost Energy Cost Psychic Cost

Strategic Orientation Mode

Customer Orientation Low High





Low High Innovation Orientation

Strategic Orientation Mode
• ISOLATE: Organisation becomes self-centric. There is
no connect between the innovation and the customers.

• FOLLOW: The customers drive the innovation. Firm
rely heavily on market research (formal or informal).

• SHAPE: In this case, innovative technology shapes the
market. Customers may not even be aware of needs and wants.

• INTERACT: A true dialogue between the customer
and technology in this mode- called “ Market Knowledge Competence”