Question 1. What Is Services Marketing?
Services marketing is marketing of services.
It refers to the promotion of economic activities offered by a business to its clients who may be individuals or corporates. Some of the examples of the services could be telecommunication services, financial services, professional services, entertainment services, health care services, etc.
Service Marketing is one of the specialized branches of marketing.
Question 2. Explain The Types Of Services?
The services are majorly classified into two type:
Core Services: A service that is the outcome of the primary transaction.
Example: A service of the teacher or service of a hair stylist.
Supplementary Services: An additional service given on purchase of a tangible product.
Example: Home delivery service offered by restaurants on minimum order bill.
Question 3. What Are The Challenges Faced By The Service Industry?
Every industry faces some kind of challenges which are unique.
Following are some difficulties faced by the service industry:
- Difficulty in setting price: Before deciding the price of the service, you need to understand your cost for the services provided, which is difficult. So, setting the prices becomes very difficult task for this industry.
- Lack of passion among the staff – In order to generate more revenue, you need to keep your staff passionate about the services they provide. Lack of passion leads to failure.
- Testing new service – As services are intangible, testing the new services and improving quality is a major challenge. Also, letting the people know about these new services at times becomes difficult.
- Standardization is difficult – The service provided by the same person may not be the same always. So it becomes very difficult to standardize the service with the involvement of human beings.
- Uncertainty – The buyers are uncertain about the quality of service as services are intangible. They can’t experience a service before buying it.
- Demand and supply – As demand increases, the supply of products can also be increased. But this cannot be done in the service industry as you cannot store services in anticipation of an increase in demand.
- Patent rights – In order to protect your product from being used by your competitor you get them legal protection. This is not possible for services.
- Trust factor – Trust and faith play a major role in the service industry. At times it becomes difficult to build trust with the clients.
Question 4. What Are The 7p’s Of Services Marketing Mix?
The services marketing mix comprises of the 7P’s which are also known as extended marketing mix.
They are as follows:
- Product: In service marketing mix the product cannot be seen, felt or owned. It is intangible in nature.
- Place: The place where the service product is going to be located determines the place in the service industry.
- Promotion: A lot of companies provide the same kind of services. Hence, promotion is necessary to survive and it helps to face tough competition.
- Price: In the service industry, pricing is a bit difficult. You have to take care of the labor cost, the raw material, overhead cost and your profit while pricing your services.
- People: Staff of a service provider defines its service. It can make the organization or break the organization. So, organizations pay special attention to get their staff trained well.
- Process: The steps taken by the company to provide the service to the customer is known as the process. Most of the companies have a set process before the services reach the customer.
- Physical evidence: A restaurant has decent seating arrangement and good food and another restaurant has good seating arrangement along with good lighting and some soulful music and offering good food with the staff being very prompt and friendly. Which one would you choose? That is physical evidence.
Physical evidence also acts as a differentiator. It also helps customers to make an opinion about the services by the sight of the place. This is the last element of the service marketing mix.
Question 5. What Are The Characteristic Features Of Services?
Services have unique characteristics which make the marketing of goods different from marketing of services.
The characteristic features of service marketing are as follows:
- Intangible Nature: Service can be provided but you cannot see, touch and feel it. You cannot tell the customer what they will be receiving unlike a physical product which is visible. Hence, services are intangible. They cannot be displayed or patented.
- Cannot be owned: Service does not last forever, it is for a limited period of time. You can experience a service but you cannot own it.
- Inseparable: A service cannot be separated from the service provider. The time of the consumption of service is the same when it is produced. This feature makes mass production of service difficult.
- Perishable: A product which the customer buys can be stored and used again later. This is not possible with service. A service is an activity which is performed and consumed simultaneously hence they perish if they are not used.
- Fluctuating and Seasonal Demand: The demand for the services is not same every time. For example: Public transport during the morning hours have more demand and in the afternoon it’s less. Hence, the demand is fluctuating. Similarly, demand for tourism is seasonal.
- Heterogeneity: The service provided by the same person can differ. Although, the staff is mostly trained to keep the service same; however there will be a few differences. This feature is also known as variability. The service industry faces a lot of difficulty in keeping the services standardized.
Question 6. How Can You Differentiate Between A Product And A Service?
A product is something you can see, touch and feel which makes it tangible and non-perishable. It remains same for different people, it’s standardized. In a product, the production and consumption are done at a different time.
A service is intangible, heterogeneous and perishable. The production and consumption of a service occur at the same time.
Question 7. Can You Give A Few Examples Of Service Industry?
The Service industry is huge. The examples of service industry are as follows:
- Hospitality Service: This service includes hotels, restaurants, resorts, etc.
- Professional Services: This includes accounting, legal, etc.
- Educational services: This includes schools, colleges, etc.
- Health care services: This includes hospitals, dentistry, eye care etc.
- Financial Services: This includes banking, investment, etc.
- Travel industry: This includes holiday agencies, airlines, railways etc.
- Other services: This includes pest control, plumbing, carpentry, gardening, counseling, etc
Question 8. What Are The Principles Of Services Marketing?
When a product does not work as expected we know it has failed, but how will you determine the failure of services. So, here are certain principles to remember when you are marketing services.
- Focus on service: The first rule is to focus on service itself. A lot of companies focus on its marketing activities rather than the service. Marketing is important and essential for any business but if efforts are made to provide quality service and constant improvement is made in service provided then the marketing efforts will be cheaper.
- Face Reality: Many a times the providers are not aware of the quality of their services and they assume it to be good. It is important to face the reality and if the service is bad, improve it.
- Build Relationship: In service industry, you need to focus on building trust among your clients. When you are selling your services, you need to develop faith in the minds of your client.
- Innovation: Being in service industry one should know that service can always be made better and can be improved. You need to be innovative. The providers need to know what a customer would love to have rather than what they need. Here the industry should try and create something that the customers could not have thought of.
Question 9. What Marketing Tricks Should A Services Provider Focus On?
The marketing tricks that a services provider needs to focus on are as follows:
- Prepare a marketing plan: Every service provider must have a proper marketing strategy. It helps you in budget allocation and in reaching out to more people at less cost.
- Capture Important Data: Prepare a mailing list and keep it updated. Sending an email is a convenient way of communicating. Information about the purchase history should also be maintained. It can help you in attracting those customers who are not coming back on their own.
- Retain existing customers: Your existing customers have faith and trust in you. To gain this trust you have put in a lot of time and effort. Instead of making new customers, let your existing customers get more business for you. You can do this by having a promotional campaign by offering a complimentary service to your existing customers and their friends.
- Communicate: Make use of the internet. Keep your clients informed about the upcoming offers, discounts, competition etc.
- Social media: Social media is an effective way of promoting your services. It helps you stay connected and create brand awareness. Make good use of various social media platforms.
- Smart advertising: When you are advertising, focus on the services the product offers rather than the product itself.
- Reward Regular Customers: A very simple technique is to offer a free service after the customers have bought a few services or a customer can be offered a free trial of a new service. This helps the business to grow and the customer becomes loyal.
Question 10. What Do You Know About Our Company?
you need to do your research about the company before going for the interview. You may not know about all the services the company offers but you should take some time and do some homework.
This question is an opportunity for you to let the interviewer know what initiative you have taken to find out about the company, its core values, its mission, and vision of their business. Also, check the following before going to the interview.
- Check if they are there on any social media platform.
- Check if they were in news for some exceptional work done by them.
- Check if they have won an award in recent past.
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