Service Marketing Environment

30/09/2020 0 By indiafreenotes

The service marketing environment refers to all internal and external factors, which directly or indirectly influence the organization’s decisions related to marketing activities. Internal factors are within the control of an organization; whereas, external factors do not fall within its control. The external factors include government, technological, economic, social, and competitive forces; whereas, organization’s strengths, weaknesses, and competencies form the part of internal factors.

Marketers try to predict the changes, which might take place in future, by monitoring the marketing environment. These changes may create threats and opportunities for the business. With these changes, marketers continue to modify their strategies and plans.

Features of Marketing Environment

  1. Specific and General Forces

It refers to different forces that affect the marketing environment. Specific forces include those forces, which directly affect the activities of the organization. Examples of specific forces are customers and investors. General forces are those forces, which indirectly affect the organization. Examples of general forces are social, political, legal, and technological factors.

  1. Complexity

It implies that a marketing environment include number of factors, conditions, and influences. The interaction among all these elements makes the marketing environment complex in nature.

  1. Vibrancy

Vibrancy implies the dynamic nature of the marketing environment. A large number of forces outline the marketing environment, which does not remain stable and changes over time. Marketers may have the ability to control some of the forces; however, they fail to control all the forces. However, understanding the vibrant nature of marketing environment may give an opportunity to marketers to gain edge over competitors.

  1. Uncertainty

It implies that market forces are unpredictable in nature. Every marketer tries to predict market forces to make strategies and update their plans. It may be difficult to predict some of the changes, which occurs frequently. For example, customer tastes for clothes change frequently. Thus, fashion industry suffers a great uncertainty. The fashion may live for few days or may be years.

  1. Relativity

It explains the reasons for differences in demand in different countries. The product demand of any particular industry, organization, or product may vary depending upon the country, region, or culture. For example, sarees are the traditional dress of women in India, thus, it is always in demand. However, in any other western country the demand of saree may be zero.

Types of Marketing Environment

The sale of an organization depends on its marketing activities, which in turn depends on the marketing environment. The marketing environment consists of forces that are beyond the control of an organization but influences its marketing activities. The marketing environment is dynamic in nature.

Therefore, an organization needs to keep itself updated to modify its marketing activities as per the requirement of the marketing environment. Any change in marketing environment brings threats and opportunities for the organization. An analysis of these changes is essential for the survival of the organization in the long run.

A marketing environment mostly comprises of the following types of environment:

  • Micro Environment
  • Macro Environment

The discussion of these environments are given below:

  1. Micro Environment

Micro environment refers to the environment, which is closely linked to the organization, and directly affects organizational activities. It can be divided into supply side and demand side environment. Supply side environment includes the suppliers, marketing intermediaries, and competitors who offer raw materials or supply products. On the other hand, demand side environment includes customers who consume products.

Let us discuss the micro environment forces in the following points:

(i) Suppliers

It provides raw material to produce goods and services. Suppliers can influence the profit of an organization because the price of raw material determines the final price of the product. Organizations need to monitor suppliers on a regular basis to know the supply shortages and change in the price of inputs.

(ii) Marketing Intermediaries

It helps organizations in establishing a link with customers. They help in promoting, selling, and distributing products.

Marketing intermediaries include the following:

  • Resellers: It purchases the products from the organizations and sell to the customers. Examples of resellers are wholesalers and retailers.
  • Distribution Centers: It helps organizations to store the goods. A warehouse is an example of distribution center.
  • Marketing Agencies: It promotes the organization’s products by making the customers aware about benefits of products. An advertising agency is an example of marketing agency.
  • Financial Intermediaries: It provides finance for the business transactions. Examples of financial intermediaries are banks, credit organizations, and insurance organizations.

(iii) Customers

Customers buy the product of the organization for final consumption. The main goal of an organization is customer satisfaction. The organization undertakes the research and development activities to analyze the needs of customers and manufacture products according to those needs.

(iv) Competitors

It helps an organization to differentiate its product to maintain position in the market. Competition refers to a situation where various organizations offer similar products and try to gain market share by adopting different marketing strategies.

  1. Macro Environment

Macro environment involves a set of environmental factors that is beyond the control of an organization. These factors influence the organizational activities to a significant extent. Macro environment is subject to constant change. The changes in macro environment bring opportunities and threats in an organization.

(i) Demographic Environment

Demographic environment is the scientific study of human population in terms of elements, such as age, gender, education, occupation, income, and location. It also includes the increasing role of women and technology. These elements are also called as demographic variables. Before marketing a product, a marketer collects the information to find the suitable market for the product.

Demographic environment is responsible for the variation in the tastes and preferences and buying patterns of individuals. The changes in demographic environment persuade an organization to modify marketing strategies to address the altering needs of customers.

(ii) Economic Environment

Economic environment affects the organization’s costs structure and customers’ purchasing power. The purchasing power of a customer depends on the current income, prices of the product, savings, and credit availability.

The factors economic environment is as follows:

  • Inflation: It influences the customers’ demand for different products. For example, higher petrol prices lead to a fall in demand for cars.
  • Interest Rates: It determines the borrowing activities of the organization. For example, increase in interest rates for loan may lead organizations to cut their important activities.
  • Unemployment: It leads to a no income state, which affects the purchasing power of an individual.
  • Customer Income: It regulates the buying behavior of a customer. The change in the customer’s income leads to changed spending patterns for the products, such as food and clothing.
  • Monetary and Fiscal Policy: It affects all the organizations. The monetary policy stabilizes the economy by controlling the interest rates and money supply in an economy; whereas, fiscal policy regulates the government spending in various areas by collecting the revenue from the citizens by taxing their income.

(iii) Natural Environment

Natural environment consists of natural resources, which are needed as raw materials to manufacture products by the organization. The marketing activities affect these natural resources, such as depletion of ozone layer due to the use of chemicals. The corrosion of the natural environment is increasing day-by-day and is becoming a global problem.

(iv) Socio-Cultural Environment

Socio-cultural environment comprises forces, such as society’s basic values, attitudes, perception, and behavior. These forces help in determining that what type of products customers prefer, what influences the purchase attitude or decision, which brand they prefer, and at what time they buy the products. The socio-cultural environment explains the characteristics of the society in which the organization exists. The analysis of socio-cultural environment helps an organization in identifying the threats and opportunities in an organization.

For example, the lifestyles of people are changing day-by-day. Now, the women are perceived as an active earning member of the family. If all the members of a family are working then the family has less time to spend for shopping. This has led to the development of shopping malls and super markets, where individuals could get everything under one roof to save their time.

(v)  Technological Environment

Technology contributes to the economic growth of a country. It has become an indispensible part of our lives. Organizations that fail to track ongoing technological changes find it difficult to survive in today’s competitive environment.

Technology acts as a rapidly changing force, which creates new opportunities for the marketers to acquire the market share. Marketers with the help of technology can create and deliver products matching the life style of customers. Thus, marketers should observe the changing trends in technology.