The difference between advertising and integrated marketing communications

  When I was a marketing student, a long time ago, I did not study integrated marketing communications. Instead, I studied advertising and sales management as separate subjects. That was the way it was taught in university and that was the way it was practiced in real organizations. (In the sales/promotion era of marketing.) For … Read more…

Why services are different

Service marketing is a different subject in university and/or the different chapter in a marketing textbook because there are distinct challenges in marketing services as opposed to marketing physical products (goods). When marketing courses and textbooks were first developed, they primarily focused on the marketing efforts of manufacturers selling a physical product through a distribution … Read more…

Why the service economy is growing

  When you study services marketing as part of your business degree, you quickly learn that services represent 70 – 80% of gross domestic product in most developed countries. Over the past 50 years or so, service sectors have grown significantly, relative to manufacturing, to become the dominant aspect of many economies throughout the world. … Read more…

Are retailers service firms?

  Why are retailers classified as service firms? In the study of services marketing, retailers are classified as service providers. One of the questions I am often asked by university students is why retailers are service firms. After all, retailers generally sell a physical product – so why are they service providers? This is a … Read more…

Service firm examples

  When you study services marketing at University, you will learn that there are some unique challenges that service firms and industries face. That is why the services marketing mix has been extended from 4 P’s to the 7 P’s. A good way to start your understanding of services marketing is to get a good … Read more…

How services add value

  What is a service? A common definition for a service in marketing terms is: A service is any performance, experience or act (that one party can offer to another and that is essentially intangible and does not result in the ownership of anything. A good way to remember the scope of the services to … Read more…

Tangibility-Intangibility Continuum

Using and Understanding the Intangibility Continuum Essentially all product offerings in the marketplace are a mix of services and goods – that is, intangible and tangible elements. This was first documented by Lynn Shostack in 1977 in a journal article published in the Journal of Marketing (Breaking Free from Product Marketing). (Note: It is at … Read more…

Services Marketing versus Customer Service

  What’s the Difference between Services Marketing and Customer Service? When you study Services Marketing at university, essentially you are learning about firms that primarily sell a service as their core product. The whole essence of a services marketing textbook revolves around “pure” service firms. However, when we hear the word “service” we often think … Read more…

SERVQUAL’s 22 Questions

  List of SERVQUAL Questions Below is a table (and a diagram at the bottom) containing the 22 questions originally used to construct the SERVQUAL model. There are several issues to note about the structure of the SERVQUAL questionnaire: About half the questions are posed as a negative question (as highlighted in the below table). … Read more…

The Difference between Service Quality and Customer Satisfaction

  What’s the Difference between Service Quality and Customer Satisfaction? Although they are interrelated concepts, there is a difference between service quality and customer satisfaction. As discussed further in a separate article on customer satisfaction (CSAT), CSAT is the customer’s evaluation of the product/service relative to the customer’s prior expectations. Service quality, however, is the … Read more…