Relationship marketing of Verizon Wireless Cell Phones
Relationship marketing of Verizon Wireless Cell Phones Essay Sample
According to (Kotler,1997) Relationship marketing is basically the process of identifying, attracting, maintaining and enhancing relationships with key people to the business, that may include the customers that purchase the companies products, the suppliers to the company as well as the distributers. Relationship marketing is said to have developed from the direct response marketing campaigns that were conducted by marketers in the 1960s and 1980s, which stressed on customer retention, extended and continued satisfaction rather than one time sale. Basing on the above this paper thus seeks to provide an appropriate approach for relationship marketing of Verizon wireless cell phones, a major carrier in the United States market.
Verizon wireless cell phones have continued to dominate the national wireless cell phone market due to the company’s consistent expansion and maintenance of the company’s national wireless network. (Verizon wireless, online) for instance the company invested $6.6 billion and a further $1.7 to improve and increase its network coverage to effectively serve their customers.
Research has shown that the most successful companies over the years are basically those that are capable of retaining their existing customers through continuous improvement on customer service and satisfaction this is so because it costs less to retain a customer as compared to acquiring a new one, Verizon can thus adopt the following relationship marketing approaches for its consumer, distributer and supplier markets respectively.
In order to retain the existing customers a customer loyalty program should be introduced. (Meyer, A. 2000) this can be done by giving the existing customers reason to stay loyal to the company’s services, for example providing bonuses or rewards to customers who utilizes a given percentage of the companies services or airtime. This will encourage repeat usage of the companies services as more and more of the customers will want to call again and again to reach the level that will enable them get the bonuses, thus repeat business.
Consumer orientation coupled with personalized service provision to the customers could as well be a good strategy for retaining the existing customers in that, with proper customer data base management the company will be able to identify each and every customers needs and provide personalized services to specific customers, for example communicating their new tariffs and offers to customers through their phones bearing the customers names. This will pass the message that the company is in direct touch with the specific customer hence continued relationship between the customer and the company. (Therstain, n. d.)
In order to enhance mutual relation with the suppliers, Verizon wireless needs to position itself as a free and fair procurer as well as develop high switching costs for suppliers, for the network equipment and services. According to (George, W.1990) Internal marketing is another approach that can be used to enhance supplier and consumer satisfaction. According to this theory every employee is basically a supplier of services to the company (labour) and a consumer of its products, this thus leads to service provision from one employee to the other along the value chain and this enables the employees to view their roles in terms of customer perception. In fact some theorists claim that internal marketing is a prerequisite for the eventual external marketing effort rolled out by a company.
On the other hand being that cell phones have actually become a necessity rather than luxury product, intensive distribution of the handsets would be deemed appropriate to reach as many people and markets as possible and serve the ever growing demand adequately. This can be done by recruiting distributers of the company’s handsets such as agents, who would sell the cell phone handsets on behalf of Verizon. To retain and establish long term relations with the agents the company should provide the agents with attractive commissions on sales made as well as account maintenance fee to be used in the activation of customers on the companies (Verizon wireless) calling plans. The company should also invest in the agents through training them as this will ensure effective service provision to the eventual consumers. Similarly the company can also increase their marketing communication expenditure as this will assist the agents who may not be capable of running independent promotions, push the products through the market to consumers.
Having observed the above it’s important to note that as much as relationship marketing enables companies retain existing customers profitably,(Meyer,2000) it also comes with additional costs to the company. Effective customer satisfaction basically increases the total costs of providing the products or services in that the total cost to the company would include the after sale services ( guarantees for the handsets), cost as well as the cost of providing bonuses to retain customers. All these costs have to be incurred by the company. This may be detrimental for the company since it positions itself as a low cost carrier in the crowded market and thus may not be capable of passing the additional costs to the customers.
George, W. (1990) “Internal marketing and organizational behavior: A partnership in developing
customer-conscious employees at every level”, Journal of Business Research, vol. 20, no 1, 1990, pp. 63-70
Kotler, P. (1997) Marketing management: Analysis, planning, implementation and control, 9th
ed, Englewood cliffs: prentice hall.
Meyer, A. (2000) Relationship marketing success through investment in services.
Therstain, (n.d.) Gaining competitive advantage through customer satisfaction and customer
Retention, Spinges publishers.
Verizon Wireless (n.d.). Retrieved September 23rd, 2008, from http://www.verizonwireless.com/phones