tiistai 21. helmikuuta 2012

3 More Ps

Hey wait - wait! According to the modern marketing theory, the marketing mix is extented to 7Ps! The three additional Ps form the service aspect of the marketing mix. 

'We treat our customers as we treat one another, with respect and dignity.' (1) 

Starbucks supports the concept “we’re not employees - we're partners” because we passionately share common goals and mutual success”, as it realizes that “happy customers” start with “happy staff”. Starbucks spends much time and efforts to train their staff, they go through coffee making, serving, tasting (staff must know what to advise the customers when those are confused with the wide choice), communication skills…I still can’t forget that admiring girl in Starbucks Barcelona with her “Good morning Kosti, Cinnamon Dolce Latte?”, as I was passing by every morning during my 2 weeks holiday in Spain. And this is the key point of Starbucks service – create a feeling of neighborhood and home warmth, where everyone is happy to see you.

Check this out and you’ll understand why people all over the world come to Starbucks again and again:

One more important point is that Starbucks supports diversity (2). Diversity within the company, diversity of customers, partners and everyone Starbucks interacts with.  It is a truly international environment welcoming people from all over the world and treating them equally. This is important as Finland itself is a welcoming country for people from different countries, it supports multinational environment.  And that’s great as Starbucks would find enough people among locals and internationals searching for a full-time and part-time job. They just need to have the skills and characteristics important for Starbucks service:  ready to be everywhere, active and getting the things fast, customer-oriented, open-minded and friendly.

Starbucks does its best to improve the process of giving services from coffee bins to friendly “Good morning sir, what would you like to drink?” (ah, Barcelona…). Quality of service and quality of coffee are key aspects of Starbucks’ business. The company realizes that customers actually are not interested in the details of how Starbucks runs the business; what they care about is that the system works well and they get products and service of high quality for considerable price. The staff issue has already been discussed above, but I’d like to underline one more time that work and performance of employees play important role in service quality.

How does the process actually work when you are ready to make your choice for one of those delicious drinks? It can be different dependent on the size of the coffee house, the most efficient way is  a person who takes the orders, next one taking the payment and a third one making the drinks. This sequence reduces the queue, though still queues are daily issue in many Starbucks location due to the high demand.  (6)

Have you seen this terrible queue of people waiting for their take-away coffee in Wayne’s Coffee in the morning in Kamppi? Starbucks takes care about their customers not to be stressed in the queue (especially in the morning at the beginning of working day) and recently the company has introduced new payment services. Contactless payment provided by Barclaycard allows paying for your drink by simply holding their card over the terminal without any pin codes and long authorization. (8) Now this option is available in UK, but I’m confident that Starbucks should bring it to Finland as here people rare have cash and mainly pay by card.

One more stunt is that now you are able to pay for drinks in all Starbucks coffeehouses directly from your iPhone! Application for Android is being developed as well.

In autumn 2011 Starbucks launched the update for its mobile apps and now customers can not only find the nearest Starbucks location and create own specialty coffee drink, but also pay with their mobile phones! These new tricks will dramatically reduce the queues at all outlets and give some more minutes to enjoy your time.  (7)
Physical evidence.
Physical evidence is a key component of building customer relationship especially in service sector, people perceive things much better when they can experience them, thus everything customers could see and touch forms the perception of the company and everything it does.

Starbucks offers a combination of product and service and I think it really does a good job in giving customers the best experience, so that they want to try it again and again. Customers pay not just for cup of coffee or tea, but for overall enjoying their time. When you enter the café you see clean, friendly environment, with cozy chairs, sofas, tables, book shelves, bright and “tasty” show case with those alluring pastries, menu  with tempting coffee pictures… you see smiling welcoming staff in those green uniforms with Starbucks logo, you hear nice music which complements the atmosphere of the “place to be”.

Mmm, I’m already there…  Outstanding design of coffee drinks,  cream, cinnamon and other dressings, convenient mugs and high glasses give an impression that you have so much coffee to drink, but it’s suddenly finished very quickly and there is no other option than to go and order one more. What else physical evidence do you need than your perfect cup of special specialty coffee?

- Dreaming about my hot Latte and freezing at home, Kosti.

(Text by Maria Boychenko)

2 kommenttia:

  1. I like that you have incorporated the 3 P's to your blog as well since they seem to be very crucial for Starbucks and contribute greatly to its competitive advantages.

    The contacless payment method introduced in the UK sounds very efficient and I agree that it could work very well in Finland as well since we are a rather "card-relying" country :) Furthermore, I think the iPhone payment method could also work here as Finland has (like Heljo mentioned today in his presentation) a rather high smart phone penetration rate :)

  2. Hi Isa! Thank you for your comment.

    As Starbucks offers not only product but the environment to enjoy the coffee and time, it has to keep searching for opportunities to deliver best experience to customers. Staff obviously plays a crucial role here, as employees are the only one who directly interacts with customers. Especially this is important in countries with initially high quality of service, such as Finland for example.

    The idea to cut the lines implementing contactless payment is really great, as the perspective of standing in a snake-like queue to pay may kill any intention to buy, even Starbucks coffee :)