Note : Question No. 1 is of short answer type and is compulsory for all the students.
It carries 5 Marks. (Word limits 50-100)
Q.1 Answer all the questions.
(I) “Value is low price”. Elucidate the statement.
Ans. Some buyers use the word value to refer to situations where they simply pay a relatively low price, such as when an item is on sale. The focus here is purely on what is given up monetarily. When a product is sold at a specialty reduced price, such as at an inventory clearance, or when a customer receives a discount for using a coupon or takes advantage of a one-time rebate, there is a sense of getting value.
(II) What do you mean by zone of tolerance?
Ans. It seems that customers have two levels of expectation:
- Adequate – what they find acceptable
- Desired -what they hope to receive.
The distance between the adequate and the desired levels is known as the ‘zone of tolerance’.
The two levels may vary from customer to customer and from one situation to another for the same customer. You can probably remember situations in which you have accepted services or products that, in other circumstances, you would have refused or been disappointed by. Ideally businesses, and more particularly their employees, will always try to operate within a customer’s zone of tolerance.
(III) Note down the challenges faced by service providers while opting electronic channels of distribution.
Ans. The challenges faced by service providers while opting electronic channels of distribution are:-
- Lack of control of the electronic environment
- Price competition
- Inability to customize with highly standardized electronic services
- Lack of consistency
- Requires changes in consumer behaviour
- Security concerns
(IV) Write short note on service quality dimensions.
Ans. The five service quality dimensions are: –
Dimension 1 – tangibles: – The tangible Service Quality Dimension refers to the appearance of the physical surroundings and facilities, equipment, personnel and the way of communication. In other words, the tangible dimension is about creating first hand impressions.
Dimension 2 – reliability: – The reliability Service Quality Dimension refers to how the company are performing and completing their promised service, quality and accuracy within the given set requirements between the company and the customer.
Dimension 3 – responsiveness: – The responsiveness Service Quality Dimension refers to the willingness of the company to help its customers in providing them with a good, quality and fast service.
Dimension 4 – assurance: – The assurance Service Quality Dimension refers to the company’s employees.
Dimension 5 – empathy: – The empathy Service Quality Dimension refers to how the company cares and gives individualized attention to their customers, to make the customers feeling extra valued and special.
Note: Answer any two questions. Each question carries 5 marks (Word limits 500)
Q.2 Discuss the promotional mix for insurance sector.
Ans. Promotion mix for insurance sector includes: –
- Advertising: – It is a paid form of non-personal communication. It is used to create awareness and transmit information in order to gain a response from the target market. Forms of advertising are as follows:
- News Papers and Magazines: LIC give ads in the news papers and magazines round the year to continue its brand image and also when new products are introduced. Normally its ads are published in Times of India.
- Electronic media: Insurance companies also advertise its services in the Electronic media like:
- Internet (Websites): Companies like LIC (licindia.com), ICICI (www.iciciprudential.com) all have websites from which people can get the information about their products, prices, various schemes, and lots of other information. People can also purchase the product through this website.
- Television: Companies like LIC, Met Life India,advertise on television to make people aware of their products and services.
- Radio: ICICI Prudentialadvertises on 92.5 red Fm.
- Hoardings: LICput its hoardings where there is a mass flow of people, especially outside the railway station or at the backside of the bus. When Met Life was introduced it has put his hoardings on the side of the train, to target huge number of people.
- Brochures: Companies provide brochures to the customers so that they can have a look on various schemes and their prices.
- Public relations: – Public relations are helpful for the companies to build their brand image, to maintain good relationship with customers, to make the people aware of its recent happenings, etc. Mediums of Public relations are:
- Press releases: This helps the company to convey its message to its customers and other people.
- Seminars: These are held to provide information about the new product launched, position of the company in the market, etc.
- Sales Promotion:
- Gifts: LIC provides diaries, pens, booklets, etc to its customers.
- Sponsoring Events: Eg: Max New York Life Insurance Company has sponsored the recent India-Zimbabwe-New Zealand tri series.
- Personal selling:
- Agents: It is the most widely used method of promotion by all insurance companies. They recruit, train and motivate the insurance agents to convince the customers to buy insurance policies of that particular company. The agent also collects the monthly premium and settles the claims of the customers.
- Word of Mouth: Word of Mouth promotion plays the role of hidden sales force. The word of mouth promotion is normally carried out by customers, agents and employees. It can be positive or negative depending upon the service or experience they receive.
- Customers: It is important for the organization to provide customers with quality service so that he is satisfied and spread the good word of mouth. On the contrary if the customer is not satisfied with the service or experience he spreads bad word of mouth.
Q.3 Define services. What are the characteristics of service that distinguishes it from goods?
Ans. A service is an act or performance offered by one party to another. They are economic activities that create value and provide benefits for customers at specific times and places as a result of bringing desired change.
According to Sir William B “Service refers to social efforts which includes the Govt. to fight five giant evils – wants, disease, ignorance, squalor and illness in the society”.
Characteristics of services
- Intangibility:Services are intangible we cannot touch them are not physical objects. According to Carman and Uhl, a consumer feels that he has the right and opportunity to see, touch, hear, smell or taste the goods before they buy them. This is not applicable to services. The buyer does not have any opportunity to touch smell, and taste the services.
- Perish ability:Services too, are perishable like labour; Service has a high degree of perish ability. Here the element of time assumes a significant position. If we do not use it today, it labour if ever. If labour stops working, it is a complete waste. It cannot be stored. Utilized or unutilized services are an economic waste. An unoccupied building, an unemployed person, credit unutilized, etc. are economic waste. Services have a high level of perish ability.
- Inseparability:Services are generally created or supplied simultaneously. They are inseparable. For an e.g., the entertainment industry, health experts and other professionals create and offer their service at the same given time. Services and their providers are associated closely and thus, not separable.
- Heterogeneity:This character of services makes it difficult to set a standard for any service. The quality of services cannot be standardized. The price paid for a service may either be too high or too low as is seen in the case of the entertainment industry and sports. The same type of services cannot be sold to all the consumers even if they pay the same price.
- Ownership:In the sale of goods, after the completion of process, the goods are transferred in the name of the buyer and he becomes the owner of the goods. But in the case of services, we do not find this. The users have only an access to services. They cannot own the service.
- Simultaneity:Services cannot move through channels of distribution and cannot be delivered to the potential customers and user. Thus, either users are brought to the services or providers go to the user. It is right to say that services have limited geographical area.
- Quality Measurement:A service sector requires another tool for measurement. We can measure it in terms of service level. It is very difficult to rate or quantify total purchase. E.g. we can quantify the food served in a hotel but the way waiter serves the customer or the behaviour of the staff cannot be ignored while rating the total process.