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Explaining the importance of market research and advantages and disadvantages of implementation of the marketing plan for Hospitality/Tourism industry are the key concepts of this essay. To attain these objectives at first a brief description of market research and marketing plan have been given respectively followed by the importance of their presence in the service industry.
Philip Kotler has defined market research as “the systematic design, collection, analysis and reporting of data and findings relevant to a specific situation facing the company”. (2009:190) Market research links the consumer, customer and public to the marketer through information used to identify and define marketing opportunities and problems. (Albert Breneman Blankenship et al, State of the art marketing research, 1998, pg 7)
Market research is a vital part of any successful business today. Some of the benefits of market research for the operation of Hospitality industry are:
Market research helps the industry to identify opportunities in the marketplace.
For example, if you are planning to open a hotel/restaurant in a particular geographic location and have discovered that no such organisation currently exists, you have identified an opportunity. Thus the opportunity for success increases if the location is in a highly populated area with residents who match the target market characteristics which also can be done by research.
Market research minimizes the risk of doing business.
For example, marketing information may indicate that a marketplace is saturated with the type of service you plan to offer. This may cause you to alter your product offering or choose another location.
Market research uncovers and identifies potential problems.
Suppose your new hospitality organisation is thriving at its location on the main road through town. Through research you learn that in two years, the city is planning a by-pass, or alternate route, to ease traffic congestion through town. You’ve identified a potential problem.
Market research creates benchmarks and helps you track your progress.
It’s important to know, for later comparisons, the position of your business at particular moments in time. Ongoing market research allows the industry to make comparisons against benchmark measurements as well as chart of progress between research intervals (such as successive annual surveys).
Success depends on a lot of things, but when you have information about a particular market segment, a geographic area, or customer preferences, you’ll be better prepared to make the decisions that can make or break your business. Many companies use market research as a guide. Whether you want to expand your business into a new area or introduce a new product, market research plays a great role in hospitality industry by providing valuable insight to prevent costly missteps.
A marketing plan begins with the identification (through market research) of specific customer needs and how the firm intends to fulfil them while generating an acceptable level of return. It is a written document that details the necessary actions to achieve one or more marketing objectives. It can be for a product or service, a brand, or a product line. Marketing plans cover between one and five years. It generally includes analysis of the current market situation (opportunities and trends) and detailed action programs, budgets, sales forecasts, strategies, and projected financial statements
Advantages of implementation of the marketing plan for the service industry:
It is imperative for the organization to regularly assess its competitive strength amidst its competitors in the market. This helps the organization in developing and modifying its marketing and sales planning.
A well-written, comprehensive marketing plan is the focal point of all business ventures because it describes how you plan to attract and retain customers, the most crucial aspect of a business.
It is the heart of the business, the basis from which all other operational and management plans are derived. Marketing offers you a wealth of information that if applied correctly virtually can ensure your success.
Determines demand for product
Aids in design of products that fulfil consumers needs
Outlines measures for generating the cash for daily operation, to repay debts and to turn a profit
Allows for test to see if strategies are giving the desired results
Disadvantages of implementation of the marketing plan for the service industry:
Identifies weaknesses in the business skills
Leads to faulty marketing decisions based on improperly analyzed data
Creates unrealistic financial projections if information is interpreted incorrectly
Identifies weaknesses in the overall business plan
(Mary Bellis. Marketing Plan for the Independent Inventor)
The implementation of Marketing Planning simply tries to structure and shape the proposed marketing programmes and activities of the organisation. It offers numerous advantages; along with some drawbacks. However, the advantages outweigh the drawbacks.
This report is about a luxurious hotel from UK, which provides Spa utilities. Things like promotional products, who are the targets market, price, are going to be explained in detail.
The word spa, taken from the name of the famous mineral springs in Spa, Belgium, has become a common noun denoting any place with a medicinal or mineral spring. Less well known is its Eastern New England sense, “soda fountain,” probably an allusion to the carbonated or “mineral” water that is a staple ingredient of many soda fountain concoctions.
The term Spa is associated with water treatment which is also known as ballneotherapy. Spa towns or spa resorts (including hot springs resorts) typically offer thermal or mineral water for drinking and bathing. They also offer various health treatments. The belief in the curative powers of mineral waters goes back to prehistoric times. Such practices have been popular worldwide, but are especially widespread in Europe and Japan. Day spas are also quite popular, and offer various personal care treatments.
Chosen organisation: Alexander House and Utopia Spa Hotel
It is located in EAST STREET, Turners Hill, West Sussex. It is an exclusive country house set in 175 acres of mature gardens and parkland yet only 15 minutes from Gatwick Airport and major motorways. The hotel has a vast range of amenities to include Utopia Spa:
Target customers, Promotional activities and the Prising of the chosen product:
The Hotel Spa doesn’t have a specific target market but they put an accent on the adults which are keener to spend some relaxing days at a spa centre and old people too, who are coming for healthy treatments.
Like any other business, the strategy to attract more customers includes promotional offers:
Sunday Night Spa escape -enjoy, invigorate with an energetic massage concentrating on the back, neck and shoulders. Time= 25 minutes
Bust your confidence with a special facial treatment with natural and fresh ingredients. Time = 25 minutes
50% off if you will take dinner in the hotel’s restaurant
Everything for the price of £140.00
Spring Special Spa Break £159
£50 toward treatments of your choice
Dinner allocation of £30 on food only
Analysis of the consumer survey questionnaire to find out the present market position of Spa Hotel:
The table and pie charts given below give a breakdown of a market research on spa hotel in UK. As can be seen, people generally expect convenient, affordable and optimum services from the mentioned hotel. Research has been done by using questionnaire method, completed by 10 people from all walks of life.
When we found an answer to the investigation question arisen in this report, firstly we will display the data in a table and pie chart respectively and, then, the descriptive statistics that allow us to reinforce those results and better understand those differences.
In the second question, Spa experience has divided in 3 major catagories namely calm and quite place, busy night life and country side. Majority of people (6) wanted a calm and quiet place for their spa experience. A substantial number of people (3) have chosen busy night life while only one person has supported country side.
In this context, we see that, in terms of the pieces of per night of a spa Hotel, the responders(6) prefer mainly option one which is £125-£190 the lowest instead of the others, the second lowest price; in second place as 3 people chose it. Lastly nobody prefers the price of £250-£350 for their spa experience in contrast 1 person choose option three (£200-£300), which is second more expensive one.
According to the table of second question of price section, Basic+Additional package are not on the preferred list of the people. On the other hand all inclusive and individual packages got the equal position of getting 50% response each, when responders answered about their preference about the packages.
In term of services, restaurant, shopping outlets and beauty saloon are majoring in the main services offered by the Spa Hotel. 60% people have expressed that they would enjoy restaurant facilities most. Shopping outlets have come in second position with 30% while only 10% liked Beauty saloon.
In the last question, people have been asked about whether they like to have outdoor facilities like cycling or climbing on a mountain offered by the spa hotel or not. 8 out of 10 people expressed the intention of joining either of the facilities. In contrast, only 2 people have denied to having them in their spa experience.
To sum up we can say that the opinion of peoples about the spa hotel defers in many ways but they have some similarities as well. One of them is they all like to have the experience of a Spa hotel. There are some restrictions that may be pointed out in this study, namely the fact of not having been highlighted a stricter age rank within the population and the sample’s dimension is somehow reduced. In terms of future threads of investigation, it would be interesting to cross the gender variable with age, income level, professional occupation and also to expand the same study to more than a country.
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