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In the present era Telecommunication service providers are flourishing in Pakistan as the market has a lot of potential other then restriction of age and gender .Before 10 years people hardly know mobile phone and its usage, but now it is becoming a necessity and a status symbol too. There are total five telecommunication service providers in Pakistan and providing coverage in almost 70% - 75% area of the country. The total number of mobile user is around 90 million which is almost 55% of the total population. There is no specific standard, limitation, process or procedure to have or use a mobile.
Telecommunication service providers are aiming to provide the service in the whole country urban as well as rural. Technology will be provided beyond price not only the urban services will be in the reach of every one. There is a race between all organizations to gain the most of the market share and almost on daily basis they launch new attractive promotions for sellers and customers both. Telecommunication service providers are using different kind of promotional techniques and launch different promotions to attract maximum market. Mostly service providers launch price promotions according to the customer needs and expectation. It is very important to know the customer perception about the features of the launched promotion or they select the other service provider.
This study will confirm outcomes of applying the best promotional techniques by the service provider to gain the market interest. The analysis confirms the positive relationship between low cost, better quality and related promotion offer by the service providers. All these factors play a vital role to choose the best service provider with best promotions. In conclusion we would be having a better understanding of effect of these promotional techniques on customer's attraction towards a particular service provider.
1. Problem and Its Background
The terms “promotional techniques” contains a wide range of methods used by the organizations to communicate with their internal and external customers. Promotional techniques are the most visible and glamorous marketing function. These techniques and activities have an important and significant impact and role on the demand of service or product. Promotional techniques covered activities of an organization communicate with customer, employees and other interest group. Promotional techniques has a great impact on market share but it only be short term if the product is not having a standard, quality, availability and cost as per customer perception, there will not be a single reason for the survival of that product directly and organization indirectly.
Customer awareness is one of the important factors as customer can update their selves by having a lot of information from different mediums and they have many choices in the market. Over the world the attitude of the customer is almost same as they want is to have the best product in the market at a nominal cost according to their perception. How can a customer find out a best product, the manufacturer is totally alone even having the best product so there must be a technique by which the organization can excel their product and can get the market attraction, Some of the promotional techniques which are commonly use by the organizations. Which are personal selling, advertisement, publicity, sales promotion, promotional messages (Telecom service providers only).
Personal selling is one to one discussion of buyer with seller. The medium of interaction can be face to face or over the phone. The seller personnel must be capable of convincing the buyer by have a good command on product and the related product available in the market .Advertisement is informative message carry out by non personnel which is being paid by organization whose product will be advertised in that particular promo. It is one the fastest and convenient kind of Promotional technique. Publicity is same like advertising but it is unpaid advertisement communicate that information without any charges, but a third party must be involved who is inspire by the product launched by the organization that can be a editor or TV channel. Sales promotion includes all those promotional activities other then personal selling, advertisement and publicity which urge a customer to purchase a product and increase sale, it can be a incentive which attracts the customers e.g. buy one get one free or buy two get one free. Promotional messages are the technique which is only used by telecommunication Service providers, messages send to the whole subscriber base or specific subscriber as required. Even small business use this technique as they get this service as a paid one from any telecom service provider
1.2 Construct Definition
Promotional Techniques is defined as
- All kind of communication other then advertisement that gain the attention to product or services by adding values to the purchase including discount. Incentives, premium offers, contest etc. (Laura Lake, 2009).
- Using different kind is communication to support sales targets which includes advertising, personal selling, publicity and personal relation, sales promotion. (Laura Lake, 2009).
- The variety of resources available to an organization for communication to its target market personal selling, advertisement, publicity, sales promotion and publish relation (Monash, 2009).
1.3 Background Information
Abu Dhabi consortium is one of the largest business groups in the Middle East lead by His Highness Sheikh Nahyan Mubarak - Al- Nahyan and the CEO is Mr. Bashir Tahir, Abu Dhabi Consortium is one of the biggest investor in Pakistan. Bank Alfalah, Raseen Technologies, United Bank Limited and Razi Health Care are the major projects successfully operating in Pakistan. Warid Telecom was launched in Pakistan on May 23rd, 05 in 26 major cities. Warid telecom becomes joint venture between Abu Dhabi Group and SingTel group in 2007, Warid telecom entered into strategic alliance with Singapore Telecom. SingTel acquire 30% of shares in Warid telecom.
Now Warid Telecom is the third largest and the most caring cellular operator having almost 18.71 million satisfied customer setting excellent standards in telecom industry of customer care. In a recent report on customer's complaint issues by Pakistan Telecommunication Authority, Warid Telecom is the service provider with the lowest complaints in 2008-09 i.e., only 13 % and 87 % goes to the other four service providers. It clearly tells the level of customer satisfaction and effective customer services which is being provided by Warid Telecom.
Warid Telecom is having the largest distribution channel and exceptional customer services network in the country allowing its offers to customers widely accessible. At Warid the logic of service perfection is practiced in a way where customer s are given no chance of complaint and in case of any complaint they are treated with immediate and perfect solutions though highly personalized and caring services, a team of highly skilled professionals.
As Warid telecom is providing services in all the major small and big cities of Pakistan emphasizing to provide best services in the rural areas too. As a fastest growing service provider Warid Telecom is launching new and exciting promotions often. A large subscriber base in rural area are failed to understand the feature of many promotions just because of the medium used for these promotional techniques are not understandable for example if we talk about interior Sindh those subscribers unable to understand English even Urdu same is in the case of interior Punjab, NWFP and Baluchistan. They have their own mother languages which is easy for them to understand and communicate.
Any organization have the best response of its promotions when it is more understandable and accessible for every single customer here promotional techniques plays the most important role if the right technique will be used with the right medium by the organization it will be more beneficial for both organization and customers. To gain the maximum market share and to meet the customer expectation is a messy business but the organizations that care about their customer's needs and wants have a better place in the market. Lowest customer complaints and satisfaction will become the solid reason of having bigger share of an organization in the market.
1.4 Research Questions
- What are the promotional techniques which are being used by Telecommunication service providers?
- What are the appropriate promotional techniques which should be used for all the customers from any category?
- What is the impact of promotional techniques on the market share?
1.5 Research Objectives
- To give an analysis of the promotional techniques already used by the Telecom service providers.
- To give a survey based analysis of Promotional Techniques (Independent Variables) and their direct effects on market share (Dependent variables).
1.6 Scope & Limitations of Research
The scope is limited to the customers of the Warid Telecom Pvt. Ltd from different schools of thoughts. The total population is more than 18 million and the researcher will conduct the survey by convenient sampling of 120 employees. The research study is to be completed by May, 2010.
- The researcher may not be able to cover all the variables i.e., dependent and independent.
- The researcher cannot go out of the organization as the studies are limited to the promotional techniques of a particular organization.
- The researcher has very few organizations providing Telecommunication Services to have an analysis.
- The level of understanding of respondent is also a barrier to the survey analysis.
- Limited respondent have access to media.
- The researcher can only include the regular mobile services users.
- Time is one of the important factors for the researcher as this study is an additional activity to the normal daily routine.
- The researcher may not receive the proper response from the respondent because of their busy schedule.
- Personal control of the researcher is necessary.
- Personal like and dislikes of the respondents also effects this studies.
- The state of mind of the respondents also effects the research.
- The age and experience of the respondent also plays a crucial role.
- Limited respondent have the exposure for the same services provided by other organizations in the same region.
1.7 Significance of Study
This study will be exclusively look into the depth of the issues regarding promotional techniques used by the organizations and their effect on market share. This research will explore a relation between the usages of best, understandable promotional techniques with customer of that particular service provider. Hitherto, the issues have never escalated due to lack of awareness at consumer end and lack of effort at organizations end.
The findings of the studies will help the organization to better understand the customer's needs and expectations and how to manage them in an effective way. The research will act as a tool for organization to excel it promotions and attract the customer in result more effective on market share. The performance, efficiency and productivity of the organization will be improved. The higher management of the organization recognized the problems created because of ineffective promotional techniques.
In order to penetrate specific marketplace, product, and technical field or to balance their own deficiencies in the process, strategic alliance is a quick and useful way. Traditionally enterprises can safe an good position for continued existence through the adjustment of own business capacity or in the resources, in the mid of 80‘s strategic alliance became prevailingly between enterprises. Business entity with natural division in own specialties shape a trade commonwealth with joint profit, such as joint study and growth, scientific assistance and the help in products, services, promotional techniques (Kotler 2002). Strategic alliance permits the business entities with special funds to build their own edge, also decrease the struggle and to distribute the risks (Lewis 1990), it even is an vital technique of creating spirited reward (Porter 1998). It can expand the process into value constellation (Normann and Ramirez 1993).
What is strategic alliance? Currently, no final definition of strategic alliance is between different authors. Porter and Fuller (1986) recommended that strategic alliance is a prescribed, durable alliance associating between companies, but not a type of merger. Devlin and Bleackley (1988) tells that strategic alliance is a strategic choice exist in the durable strategic development of company at strategic thought, guarantee and promote the competitive limitation of the company and to change competition. Magsaysay (1989) recommended that strategic alliance is part of largely strategy of a company which is emerging from the essential work and procedures of the company, achieving the long term goals of a business and for establishing viable rewards. Aaker (2001) recommended that strategic alliance is a type of collaboration which promotes the compensation of two or more companies to achieve organization's goal.
Related the changes in the current era the marketing management idea given as. Kotler (2002) defines the growth of marketing management into five stages, production, product, sales, marketing and social marketing. The majority of the researcher based their promotion strategies on the promotion combination strategy of McCarthy (1981). McCarthy‘s promotion mix Strategies includes four parts, product strategy, price strategy, sales channel strategy and promotion techniques.
The promotion techniques of McDanyel and Kolary (1987) are defined on product, price, place, promotion, marketing research, and new trade. Dickson and Ginter (1987) divided promotion strategy into market mixing policy and product division policy. Waterschoot and Bulte (1992) divided it into vital combination and promotion combination.
Telecommunication Industry is a type of service provider with miscellaneous features from developed which through to various topics in industry with service marketing. The usual 4Ps marketing mix is not suitable in the promotional behavior as far as Telecom industry is concerned and the limited features of service providers are intangible, inseparable, changeable and expire capability.
Hence, Magrath (1986) point out that the promotion techniques of service providers, in addition to usual 4Ps, product, price, place and communication (Promotional messages/Bulk messages) must be considered. Product and services that a company provided to the market. Price means the price which the customers wish or expect to have the product. Communication means the behavior alarmed with the communication with customers and convincing them to buy it. Participants are the internal customers who help in providing service to subscribers. Equipment can develop the serviceability and preserve consistant quality. Customer service management is to development and organizes the products, from pre sale services to after sale services.
All these objectives should be accompanied by an appropriate promotional technique (Rowley, 1998). The promotional techniques combine different routes to communicate a promotional message. Applying a range of possible techniques you will select a suitable promotional technique. The customer care oriented organizations recognize that all techniques have its own particular importance. The role of promotional techniques in Marketing is to deliver a message to the customers about the best features of the product. More and more promotional techniques are needed to attract the customers to have more and more products .Demand of the product will be increased in result the sales and revenue will also increased. The promotional techniques commonly used are given as.
- Personal selling
- Sales promotion
- Promotional messages (Telecom service providers)
Personal selling is one to one dialogue between buyer and seller. The medium of interaction is face to face or over the phone .For this kind of selling the personnel must be well trained and then he or she needs to give particular time for developing and understanding the individual buyer.
There are many advantages of personal selling as it is the most flexible means of giving a promotional message. Questions can be properly answered in detail to make up a space in the customer's mind can give pause where required and then have the response of the customer. The personal seller can highlight the best features those likely to buy the service offered by the service provider. Direct, immediate feedback of the customer is one the best advantage of the personal selling.
The word advertisement originates from a Latin word “adverto” and the meaning of adverto is turn round. In the marketing context Advertising mean an informative message carry out by a non personnel medium which is paid by an identified sponsored organization whose product is being up lifted in the message.
The media such as TV, Radio, Magazines and paper are the most commonly used for advertisement. The basic objective of advertising is to increase sales and revenue though these can be achieved by applying a variety of advertising techniques.
Publicity is same like advertising but with a difference that you don't pay for it means it is advertising but with any charges. It is an unpaid message media communicate that information for free .It always involve a third party like news paper, editor or TV channel. Publicity can be positive or negative because the message in the hand of media not in the service provider. Publicity is used to endorse many brands, products, personalities, tourism places, students, events, companies' even nations. Organizations having low visibility go for publicity to improve their appearance in the market.
Sales promotion is one of the major promotional elements which include all those promotional activities other then personal selling, advertisement and publicity which attract customers to purchase and increase sale in a specific time period. Sales promotion boast up the product offering discounts or give an incentive for a particular time and buyer.
Thus special offers of free goods, deals, display items, trainings, display in stores and public places for top sales personnel or for customers. These are the special events set by the organizations and they are paid by a sponsor. They are different from other techniques as they are the temporary offers and for small span of time. The main objective of sales promotion is to achieve short term sales targets
Promotional Messages (Telecommunication Service Provider)
In Telecom industry other then all promotional techniques promotional messages sent to the whole subscribers base or some specific subscriber base as needed with intimations that for further details you needs to get help from particular websites, business offices or from there call centers.
Small organizations also get this facility as a third party for their own specific product and in a particular area. This service is known as Enterprise SMS Services. Trend of this service is increasing day by day as by paying a small amount the message of the particular product of the organization delivered to a lot of people results an immediate boast in sales and revenue.
The researcher will conduct the study using a questionnaire for gathering primary data. The secondary data will be collected from research Books, Journals, different web sites etc. 3.1 Procedure & Population .A convenient random sampling technique will be used for selection of the sample from the target population In this research study, only customers of Warid Telecom will be considered as sample for the further research.
3.2 Sample size
Sample size will be 120 respondents from the customers of Warid Telecom from Lahore
3.3 Survey Instrument
To understand the objectives of the studies a survey will be conducted. A questionnaire will be designed to collect information and will be attached with the proposal.
3.4 Data Collection
The data will be collected through the questionnaire. The questionnaire will be distributed by the researcher himself and the respondents will be contacted personally. Convenience sampling method will be used.
Data Analysis and Representation
The researcher will be using different tools in this study to analyses the primary and secondary data collected. These tools may include Microsoft excel, with techniques like Mean, median, variance and correlation etc.
Findings, Conclusions and Recommendations
Details of findings recommendations and conclusions will be explained in this chapter