Market research is the process of identifying marketing opportunities and problems. It evaluates a company’s current marketing decisions and performance (Kotler, 2014). Market research can help the Ritz Carlton better understand the issues with their service from the perspectives of the employees and customers. The Ritz Carlton would be able to get a better understanding of the issues that the clients are having with their service. It would also help to understand what the internal issues are and make the Ritz able to determine why the employees are not delivering satisfactory service to their guests.
If the Ritz-Carlton can generate and analyze an accurate perceptual map, we will be able to gauge where we stand regarding our competition. Perceptual mapping is used to measure a brand’s position (Kotler, 2014) so if the Ritz can generate an accurate perceptual map managers will see the need that the Ritz is currently not delivering on the Ritz Carlton brand’s position. Perceptual map surveys in appendix 13 can also be a very useful tool in determining your guests’ satisfaction and getting an idea of what may need to be improved. You could ask the customer to fill out a survey during or after their stay.
The Ritz-Carlton could also survey employees on their perceptions of where the company is lacking and could inquire ways the company can go about on fixing these issues. Surveying employees and customers can be a quick and efficient option and is a reasonably cost effective strategy. Properly utilizing market research enables us to meet better guest expectations and therefore better satisfy their needs. When implementing market research there needs to be a clear research plan determining objectives, choosing how best to gather that information, and how to interpret the findings (Kotler, 2014). So it’s important when developing market research strategies that the Ritz Carlton keeps these factors in mind.
Market research is critical in making decisions because it gives you the information necessary to build relationships with customers and gain insights into the needs and wants of consumers (Kotler, 2014). It helps you to understand better your customer and what they are seeking. However when implementing market research, cost and time are two very critical factors that need to be taken into consideration. Some methods of research are expensive and time-consuming so selecting the proper research method is critical.
4.0b Internal Marketing
Internal marketing is the process of marketing to the employees of a company. Communicating the brand’s position to employees is essential because they are its internal customers (Kotler, 2014). They are responsible for delivering the company’s position to consumers through every transaction. Therefore, the primary marketing a company provides should be to its employees (Kotler, 2014).
The three key components to internal marketing are an organization’s service culture, having a marketing approach to human resource management, and delivering this information to employees (Kotler 2014). The Philadelphia Ritz Carlton needs to reinforce its service culture and ensure that employees are placing an emphasis on customer service in their actions, policies, and procedures. The Ritz-Carlton brand is known for having exceptional staff and service, but that is currently not being delivered so taking a second look at the staff and current training, and recruiting procedures can help resolve this issue. The Ritz needs to make sure that a marketing approach is being taken to human resources; in their hiring process and training procedures. This is essential to that the Ritz is recruiting the best employees to deliver the high-quality service promised in the brand’s position (Kotler, 2014). Taking a look at the communication between management and staff can have a large impact on how employees follow procedures and policies (Kotler, 2014). How management communicates with employees is also a critical factor in internal marketing because by informing employees you are empowering them.
By reevaluating the internal marketing processes currently in place at the Ritz Carlton Philadelphia, we can make sure that employees care about customers and that guests’ needs are being put first in everyday transactions. The strength of the service culture at the Ritz Carlton needs to be evaluated as well as the training and recruiting processes.
Internal marketing is essential to making good decisions because marketing is a holistic function that must be adopted by every department. In tourism and hospitality- most of the marketing function is executed by line employees (Kotler, 2014). Due to the inseparability of the production and consumption of hospitality products and services, employees are part of the given product (Kotler, 2014). External marketing efforts are necessary for bringing in guests, but without proper internal marketing, the guests will not be satisfied with their service.
Communication is a critical marketing strategy that needs to be considered by the Ritz Carlton. The Ritz-Carlton is currently undergoing renovations, and a lot of customers are dissatisfied with their experience because they are unaware of the construction. The Ritz-Carlton needs to deliver this information to their clients because it is affecting their satisfaction.
Communication is a two-way process of reaching mutual understanding, in which participants not only exchange (encode-decode) information, news, ideas and feelings but also create and share meaning. In general, communication is a means of connecting people or places. In business, it is a core function of management–an organization cannot operate without communication between levels, departments and employees. See also communications. (Business Dictionary, 2016)
The way the Ritz Carlton communicates and interacts with its customers has a large impact on the client’s perception of the company. Some of the initial factors in communication that need to be considered are the message objectives and the audience (Kotler, 2014). The purpose of this message is to inform those who have booked at the Ritz-Carlton Philadelphia as well as potential guests about the renovations currently going on at the hotel. Designing the message is another critical factor in communication (Kotler, 2014). The message should be clear, concise, and somewhat personal. Offering an additional amenity or discount might make guests more willing to be understanding and accepting of the construction process.
We want to inform them of the process and also invite and encourage them to stay at the Ritz Carlton Philadelphia when the renovations are completed. Selecting the channel through which the message will be delivered has a large impact on how the message is received (Kotler, 2014). The message should be presented in the Ritz Carlton Philadelphia site as well as the property’s social media accounts. This message should additionally be included in any confirmation emails that go out to guests who have just booked to ensure that they are aware of what will be going on during their stay. Identifying the results of this communication is also important because it can help the Ritz determine how effective or ineffective the delivery of the message was. For example, if consumers cancel their bookings with the Ritz or claim they did not know about the renovations, then the Ritz-Carlton will need to reevaluate its communication strategies.
Upon examining the Ritz Carlton Philadelphia, we discovered the hotel is currently facing problems with its market research, internal marketing strategies, and communication. All of these issues are affecting the satisfaction of guests. Through our recommendations, the Ritz will be able to repair its reputation and maintain dominance in the luxury market. By conducting new market research, the Ritz-Carlton will be able to determine where the deficit lies in delivering their brand position to guests. Using market research to evaluate transactions from the perspectives of both the consumers and the employees can provide new insight for the Ritz Carlton to draw upon to improve customer satisfaction. Reevaluating the current internal marketing strategies in place can also help the Ritz to ensure it is recruiting and employing the right people. By looking at internal marketing, we can determine what training needs to be improved on to guarantee employees are properly trained and are delivering the brand position through each transaction. One of the primary factors of customer dissatisfaction resulted from guests’ lack of knowledge about the renovations the hotel is currently undergoing. By making sure this information is delivered to guests before their stay, it can better prepare guests’ expectations in how the service might differ due to the construction.