માર્કેટીંગ વિશે બિઝનેસ વર્તુળોમાં ખૂબ જ ગેરસમજ પ્રવર્તે છે. પરંતુ માર્કેટીંગને સહેલાઈથી સમજવું શક્ય છે.
માર્કેટીંગ એટલે ગ્રાહકની જરુરિયાતોને સમજીને એને સંતોષવી અને એ મારફતે આપણી કંપની માટે નફો કમાવવો. આપણે જો આપણા કસ્ટમરને ઓળખી લઇએ અને એને શું જોઈએ છે એ બરાબર સમજી લઇએ, તો માર્કેટીંગ અંગેનો બિનજરૂરી હાઉ નીકળી શકે.
પણ કસ્ટમરને અને એની જરુરિયાતોને સમજવી કેવી રીતે?
બહુ આસાન છે. આપણે એક કસ્ટમરને ખૂબ આત્મીયતાથી ઓળખીએ છીએ. એનો ગમો-અણગમો, એની પસંદ-નાપસંદ, એની જરુરિયાતો એ બધું જ આપણે ખૂબ નજીકથી, ખૂબ બારીકાઈથી જાણીએ છીએ. આ કસ્ટમર એટલે આપણે પોતે.
આપણે કોઇ પણ પ્રકારની પ્રોડક્ટ કે સર્વિસનો ધંધો કરતા હોઈએ. આપણી એ પ્રોડક્ટ કે સર્વિસ સિવાયની દરેક વસ્તુ કે સેવા આપણે બહારથી ખરીદીએ છીએ. એટલે એ દરેક ખરીદીમાં આપણે એક કસ્ટમર છીએ. એ દરેક પ્રોડક્ટ કે સર્વિસ ખરીદવાનું નક્કી કરતી વખતે આપણી અંદર એક વાર્તાલાપ ચાલે છે. દરેક પ્રોડક્ટ કે સર્વિસ ખરીદતી વખતે આપણે બધા જ વિકલ્પોને આપણે આપણી પસંદગીઓ અને જરુરિયાતો તથા અમુક અન્ય ધારાધોરણોના આધારે મૂલવીએ છીએ, અને જે પ્રોડક્ટ આપણા મૂલ્યાંકનમાં પ્રથમ નંબરે આવે છે, એના પર પસંદગી ઉતારીએ છીએ.
અમુક દુકાનદારો આપણી સાથે જે રીતે વર્તન કરે છે, એ આપણને ગમે છે, તો બીજા દુકાનદારોનું વર્તન આપણને નથી ગમતું.
અમુક કંપનીઓનો સ્ટાફ, એમના સ્ટોરની ડીઝાઇન, એમની કામ કરવાની પદ્ધતિ, એમની કસ્ટમરો અંગોની પોલીસીઓ આપણને ગમે છે. આવી કંપની કસ્ટમરને સુખદ અનુભવ કરાવે છે. બીજી અમુક કંપનીઓમાં આ જ બાબતો આપણને નથી ગમતી. કસ્ટમરને આવી કંપનીઓ ખરાબ અનુભવ કરાવે છે.
અમુક પ્રોડક્ટ્સ કે સર્વિસમાં આપણને અમુક ફીચર્સ ગમે છે. આવી પ્રોડક્ટ્સ-સર્વિસ આપણે વારંવાર ખરીદીએ છીએ, અને બીજાંઓને પણ એ ખરીદવાની ભલામણ કરીએ છીએ. આવી પ્રોડક્ટ-સર્વિસની બ્રાન્ડ વેલ્યુ અને કસ્ટમરોની સંખ્યા વધતી રહે છે.
બીજી પ્રોડક્ટ્સમાં અમુક બાબતો આપણને નથી ગમતી. આવી પ્રોડક્ટ્સ-સર્વિસ એક વાર આપણે ખરીદી લીધી, તો ફરીથી કોઇ ભાવે પણ ખરીદવાનું પસંદ નહી કરીએ, અને બીજાંઓને પણ એ સામે ચેતવીએ છીએ. આવી પ્રોડક્ટ્સની બ્રાન્ડ વેલ્યુ અને કસ્ટમરોની સંખ્યા ઘટતી જાય છે.
આપણને એક કસ્ટમર તરીકે કોઇ કંપનીનું જે કંઇ ગમ્યું, એવું આપણી કંપનીમાં કરીએ તો આપણા કસ્ટમરોને પણ એ ગમશે. કોઇ પ્રોડક્ટ િવશે કંઇક ગમ્યું તો એવી બાબતો આપણી પ્રોડક્ટમાં સામેલ કરીએ તો આપણી પ્રોડક્ટ પણ ખૂબ ચાલશે જ.
એક કસ્ટમર તરીકે આપણને થતા સારા-નરસા અનુભવો પરથી આપણે સહેલાઈથી સમજી શકીએ, કે આપણે માર્કેટીંગમાં શું કરવું જોઈએ અને અને શું ન કરવું જોઈએ. બસ આપણે કોઇ પણ પ્રોડક્ટ કે સર્વિસ ખરીદતી વખતે આપણા આંખ-કાન-મગજ અને આપણું મન ખુલ્લું રાખીએ, તો માર્કેટીંગની આંટીઘૂંટીને આપણા જાત અનુભવે, ખૂબ જ આસાનીથી સમજી શકીએ.
Ideally, city public bus services can help traffic congestion in metros. AC public transport buses can also attract some private car owners to switch to them if the service is reliable, fast and comfortable. One bus can help keeping 30-40 cars off roads used in daily, regular commute.
AC bus service provided by BEST in Mumbai runs empty even during rush hours. This is one example of marketing failure. There is a huge demand for transport during rush hours in Mumbai, and still BEST does not get customers and loses money on the service.
The buses run frustratingly slow. It seems the drivers are trained and told to “take their time”. Also, the buses seem to have very slow pickup. Or, may be they are of inferior quality which can’t run or maneuver fast. So, taking such a bus means having a leisurely ride to somewhere where you are not in hurry to reach. Officegoers can’t rely on such a slow, unreliable service.
Another reason is timings. Many of the rides run during non-rush hours, attracting hardly 10% occupancy. It seems BEST has not studied customer needs before starting this service and its timings.
If municipal corporations want to provide some reliable alternative to private commuting, they must promise and provide reliability, punctuality and speed at peak hours.
If they fail to satisfy this basic customer need, customers will not patronize it. It is simple marketing lesson. Governments and its companies should look at marketing from customer’s point of rather than ruining their enterprises from bureaucratic point of view.
Blessed by Baba Ramdev, Patanjali is really a great Indian brand. I admire the brand for its quality, honesty and the spirit of Indian nationalism behind it.
Patanjali’s products are excellent, even superior to its competitors. But, having excellent products alone does not promise success in consumer markets.
Proper marketing and branding has to match. With great products which compare with or surpass their MNC competition perfectly, Patanjali needs to work on its customer experience side as well.
Even though I am its customer and want to remain loyal to the brand, there are some problems which disturb me. Here are some weak customer experience aspects the brand must improve upon.
1) Good products must be made available consistently. Out-of-stock products give a window to competition to win our customers. When we go to a Patanjali outlet, we are not sure whether we will surely get a particular product or not, because one or the other product is out-of-stock regularly. Patanjali needs to stengthen its supply and distribution chain.
2) The stores are cramped. They look like a shop-cum-godown. A customer has to struggle her way through assorted items, cartons, boxes etc. spread across the store. The stores must be designed for a pleasant shopping experience. A revamp is a must.
3) The stores are under-staffed. The customers have to wait for a long time for their turn to be attended. Whatever staff is present, it is indifferent at best. They are like MTNL employees in the midst of the efficient telecom industry. They need to be customer friendly.
4) The stores have very restrictive timings. Also, they don’t give any carry bags (plastic, paper, cloth – nothing). Again, customer-centric approach is required.
Overall, the customer feels less than happy shopping at a Patanjali outlet.
This is typical of many Indian enterprises, which make great products but fail miserably in marketing, branding and customer experience management. This gives room to MNCs to succeed in the market with aggressive marketing even though they have inferior products.
I wish that brand Patanjali succeeds by being relevant to the largest customer base. In its today’s avatar, it is just another incarnation of a Khadi Bhandar. If it wants to compete successfully with the HULs, P&Gs, Nestles or Britannias it will have to shape itself up appropriately.
My swadeshi feelings may help me tolerate or ignore bad experience. But I doubt today’s younger generation will have patience to do that.
Either Patanjali should tighten its retailing to be more relevant or it should get out of retailing and get distributors who can sell it aggressively and appropriately in the manner the customer expects.
It is time Khadi Bhandar grows up. Or risk becoming overshadowed by swanky, modern malls.
I saw Aishwarya Rai speaking about her comeback films in completely fake accent with convoluted pronunciations on CNBC TV18. Her desperate attempts to “prove” her class through her “polished” language was obvious. A lot of Bollywood divas and hunks indulge into faking this contrived personality facade.
Here the channel was English, but I have always found it amusing watching Bollywood actors speaking English on Hindi TV interactions or in award functions. They somehow manage to fake accent, but their shallow vocabulary gets exposed when they have to explain their thoughts with “You know” and “I mean” after every few words, obviously because of loss of words.
I don’t understand why can’t they speak in Hindi on Hindi channels when they have to struggle hard to get it right in English? Is it their desire to belong to some higher class?
When a newcomer is trying to enter filmdom, he/she wants to anyhow belong to the Bollywood fraternity, which is a motley group of all types of artists. By hook or by crook, they want to belong to Bollywood, at any level.
And then, once they are in, they wish to upgrade their class, they seek distinction and aspire to belong to the “higher” class of actors who are fluent in English. They want to rise above the ordinary and want to belong to a higher class. They wish to appear “different” from those Desi actors who can’t even speak English.
Junior actors or veterans, stars or wannabes, all want to belong somewhere.
So do we all.
We all crave to belong somewhere. There where we are not.
This is one proof of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. And that is where a huge untapped market lies.
“I mean. You know?”
I have heard people saying that they bought something from eBay.in, flipkart.com, infibeam.com, snapdeal.com, amazon.in or jabong.com. But, I have not yet come across anybody talking about buying or selling something on OLX or QUIKR.
The only place where I have seen their names is in advertisements, which try to tell me that I can sell my junk through them. Somehow, I am not convinced that selling my assorted used items (which even the Kabadiwala refuses to look at) will be as easy as it is made out to be and people will be waiting to lap up my useless stuff.
I think there are many people like me who are not convinced.
This reminds me of a mother who grooms her young daughter and takes her to all parties and social functions to get her noticed by mothers of prospective grooms. The only objective is to get her daughter married to some boy from a prosperous family.
The rise of some eCommerce ventures and their phenomenal valuations coupled with the easy availability of VC or PE funding has given rise to some silly and greedy start-up mindsets, whose only motive is to create a company which gets picked up or taken over by some bigger giant. They are not interested in developing a business. They are just interested in creating a hype, making a lot of noise and waiting for some idiot to come and buy their junk at ridiculous prices.
And they think that even if they sell junk, there will be hordes of PEs and VCs with loads of money eager to buy their company.
They don’t realize that if they could not convince a customer to come and buy/sell their stuff on their platform, only idiots will come and invest into such junk traders who themselves are soon going to be junk.
They must remember that in every Tech boom, everybody and their cousins want to ride that wave. Today, everybody wants to be an Amazon or a Flipkart. But most of them result into a mother desperate to showcase her daughter.
They should realize that it is not easy to “Bech De” their company so Quikrrrrr….
Making noise on advertisements (on easy VC/PE money) is easy. Making sense is not so easy.
जब कोई ब्रान्ड अपने Logo या Tagline के विरुद्ध काम करती है, तो कस्टमर का भरोसा उस पर से उठ जाता है |
ब्रान्ड जो प्रोमिस करती है, वहीं करनी चाहिए, और वही सच्चाई Logo या Tagline या किसी भी प्रकार के मेसेज में अभिव्यक्त होनी चाहिए |
अपने पेकेजिंग पर “बेस्ट क्वालिटी” लिख देने से अंदर की प्रोडक्ट बेस्ट नहीं बन जाती | और अगर वह प्रोडक्ट निम्नस्तर की होगी, तो कोइ कस्टमर उस “बेस्ट क्वालिटी” वाली बात पर भरोसा नहीं करेगा |
कुछ ऐसा ही मुंबइ म्युनिसिपल कोर्पोरेशन के सफाई विभाग का है | मुंबइ में आपने देखा होगा की सफाई की ट्रक, सडकों पर रखे गार्बेज-बीन या सफाई कर्मचारियों के युनिफोर्म पर लिखा है “Clean-up चकाचक मुंबइ” | लेकिन मुंबइ शहर की सफाइ का निम्न स्तर देखकर तुरंत पता चल जाता है कि इस “चकाचक मुंबइ” स्लोगन का कोइ मतलब नहीं है | शहर तो छोडो वह ट्रक, वह गार्बेज बीन या वह युनिफोर्म में से भी कुछ साफ सुथरा या चकाचक नहीं है | “चकाचक मुंबइ” सिर्फ लिखनेवाले की कल्पना से आगे कहीं भी नहीं है |
ब्रान्ड का स्लोगन या टेग-लाइन बिना सोचे समझे लिख डालेंगे, ब्रान्ड उस के अनुसार काम नहीं करेगी, तो ब्रान्ड की कथनी और करनी में अंतर रह जाएगा | ब्रान्ड की प्रोमिस और पर्फोर्मन्स सुसंगत नहीं होंगे, तो ब्रान्ड पर कोइ भरोसा नहीं करेगा | गलत स्लोगन से ब्रान्ड को फायदा कम और नुकसान ज्यादा होता है |
How do you feel when a time-share company
1) Invites you for a 45-minute presentation with a promise of a FREE gift.
2) Follows up enthusiastically to fix an appointment.
3) When you confirm an appointment, reminds you emphatically that “Please do come because the FREE gift vouchers once made in your name cannot be canceled.”
4) Sends an SMS with venue, time details and seeks SMS confirmation ftom you.
5) Just 15 minutes prior to the appointment time, calls you up and asks “Where are you? We are waiting for you.”
6) When you arrive 5 minutes before the appointment time, the receptionist tells you that ” We can’t accommodate you. Our presentation venue is full.
Either you come after an hour or some other day. ”
7) Wastes your precious time and does not even bother to express a simple “Sorry”.
Club Mahindra did just this last week with us. It created a lot of hype around the presentation and the free gift and in the end, failed disappointingly. A telling example of an extremely poor execution of a marketing strategy.
A lot of characteristics of a company are reflected in the way it conducts its operations. It is natural to doubt the quality of services of a company that cannot coordinate its regular marketing activities properly.
Club Mahindra has a lot of work to do in its marketing activities coordination. Till then a lot of advertising and promotional expense will continue to go in drain creating a lot of avoidable bitterness among its prospects.
Many of us could not understand why Google and other companies give email, storage, audio, video and so many of their services FREE to us? For us, it was a welcome gift..!
But, think over. Why would any company give anything FREE? We must remember that there is no free lunch anywhere in the world.
So, in exchange of the FREE email facility and assorted other services, these companies are getting to know a lot about us. What do we like? What to we buy? Where do we buy from? How do we spend our time? Who our friends are? Which movies do we like? Which books do we read? Which mobile phone or Credit Card do we use? Where do we travel? Which restaurants we eat at?
And, this is very very valuable information. When they know all such things about us, they get a fair idea about us and our tastes and preferences. Then they themselves use this information for selling us many similar products and services and also to other companies who buy data from them. Also, bits and pieces of information accumulated from billions of people around the world finally result into a mammoth source of knowledge which marketers can use profitably by inferring trends from that data.
So, in exchange of giving something FREE to us, they sell our own data…! This is the price of connectivity that we are paying in the form of loss of privacy.
So, next time be aware and clear that if you are getting something for free, you (perhaps in the form of data about you) may be the product. Really, there is no FREE lunch, breakfast or dinner.