Services Marketing: People, Technology, Strategy

Given your understanding of the three-stage model of service consumption, how do you feel management can also use this model to enhance the customer experience

The three-stage model of service consumption outlined by Lovelock and Wirtz (2011) should be used by management to enhance a positive customer experience. Management has to implement certain research at the stage of service development. The research has to be based on the model. Thus, managers have to identify ways the customer can understand he/she needs the service as well as tools he/she is likely to utilize to find the service.

This will help develop effective communication with the potential customer and create the need to use the service. Researchers note that managers’ expectations tend to be far from being realistic and they often do not know about the quality of the service provided, customers’ expectations, or ways to evaluate the service quality (Mudie & Pirrie 2012). Thus, the research has to include surveys, focus groups, and so on (Parasuraman, Zeithaml & Berry 1985). It is important to see what customers expect from using the service. Finally, it is crucial to pay attention to service evaluation and managers have to use numerous tools to check the service quality (including monitoring staff’s performance, addressing customers, implementing surveys, and so on).

In what way did the service encounter you described in your DQ meet your needs, fall short of expectations, or go beyond your expectations. What impact did this have on you purchasing from the same organization again, recommending them, or giving negative word-of-mouth?

The company I addressed went beyond my expectations. It is possible to employ a service criteria checklist provided by Parasuraman, Zeithaml, and Berry (1985) to understand how it happened. Apple managed to provide the service characterized by such determinants as reliability. It was the first time I used the service and it was a successful and pleasant experience for me. I expected to get an answer to my question on an application and I got a detailed answer. Thus, I got what I expected to get.

The service I received was also characterized by responsiveness. I was connected to a representative of the support team within a minute or two. This is a short period for waiting and I was even somewhat surprised to get connected that quickly. Competence was another characteristic of the service I got. The support team member knew how the application worked as if it was the most asked question. At that, the instructions were very clear and precise. The service’s other characteristic feature was accessibility. As has been mentioned above, the waiting tie was rather short and I do not remember the exact time I was calling but I am not sure it was working hours. According to the company, the service is provided 24/7 so it is accessible.

Another characteristic is courtesy as the company’s representative was polite and friendly. As has been mentioned above, communication is one of the distinctive features of the service provided. The support team representative was speaking the language I understood perfectly well. This feature is closely connected with knowing the customer and it is clear that AppleCare specialists have this understanding.

Again, credibility is an important determinant of the service success and Apple provides such services. I got credible information on the application and, importantly, I got credible information on the availability of such a service. Finally, the service is also characterized by such determinants as tangibles. I got my application working properly to its full capacity. This was almost tangible as the product is digital. It is possible to note that only one determinant was not clearly present. Security was not involved as I hardly needed any security measures.

On balance, it is possible to note that the service provided was high-quality and this led to my attitude towards the company as I am willing to address them and give positive word-of-mouth.

Reference List

Lovelock, CH & Wirtz, J 2011, Services marketing: people, technology, strategy, Pearson Prentice-Hall, Upper Saddle River, NJ.

Mudie, P & Pirrie, A 2012, Services marketing management, Routledge, Oxford.

Parasuraman, A, Zeithaml, VA & Berry, LL 1985, ‘A conceptual model of service quality and its implications for future research’, Journal of Marketing, vol. 49, no. 1, pp. 41-50.