Year

2024

Credit points

10

Campus offering

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Prerequisites

MKTG207 Marketing Toolkit or MKTG100 Principles of Marketing

Teaching organisation

150 hours over a twelve-week semester or equivalent study period

Unit rationale, description and aim

In a rapidly changing global marketplace, successful service firms are interested in enhancing service quality and creating a unique customer experience (CX) for their competitive advantage. This unit introduces contemporary services marketing strategies that can create positive customer experiences. Using models, frameworks and theories from services marketing, students will design creative service strategies and apply them to analyse the customer experience outcomes such as satisfaction, trust, commitment, word of mouth and loyalty. This unit also focuses on what a service firm can do to deliver customer experiences while considering global and ethical practices.

Services marketing and customer experience strategies represent a junction where service firms develop strategies to understand customer experience management (CXM) and cultivate a customer-centric culture. In this unit, students learn how to measure and manage metrics for desired customer experience outcomes. This unit helps students understand, analyse, and apply customers’ experience mapping and pain points for their overall journey from pre-purchase to post-purchase situations. Based on its customer journey evaluation, the service firm can allocate marketing investments and budgets to improve its performance.  

This unit aims to prepare students for service marketer and customer relationship manager roles and assist them in developing skills and knowledge in managing a firm’s services through creative strategies and tactics to make effective marketing decisions in the local and global marketplace.


Learning outcomes

To successfully complete this unit you will be able to demonstrate you have achieved the learning outcomes (LO) detailed in the below table.

Each outcome is informed by a number of graduate capabilities (GC) to ensure your work in this, and every unit, is part of a larger goal of graduating from ACU with the attributes of insight, empathy, imagination and impact.

Explore the graduate capabilities.

Learning Outcome NumberLearning Outcome DescriptionRelevant Graduate Capabilities
LO1Explain customer experience, mapping, and management in services marketing context in collaboration with othersGC1, GC9
LO2Interpret the determinants and consequences of customer-centric culture in service firmsGC2, GC7
LO3Identify and apply the appropriate contextual factors and service strategies in assessing customer journey and uncovering pain points to solve a broader service problemGC2, GC12
LO4Analyse and communicate customer experience metrics for desired service strategiesGC8, GC12
LO5Critically examine and recommend an effective services marketing plan to recover a poor customer experienceGC7, GC8

Content

Topics will include: 

  • The concept of services marketing, models and theories
  • Customer experience, experience mapping and customer experience management in the service context
  • Antecedents and consequences of superior customer-centric culture in service firms
  • Customer experience metrics and contextual factors (e.g., Servicescape) in service firms
  • Service strategies to create customer experience outcomes such as satisfaction, trust, commitment, word of mouth and loyalty
  • Pre-purchase and post-purchase decision-making in services marketing
  • Service recovery
  • Service display in local and global cultures

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

The learning and teaching strategy is based on student engagement in the learning process by participation in workshops or equivalent and practical activities designed to reinforce learning. Workshops and equivalent support students to actively participate in the construction and synthesis of knowledge both individually and in small groups. By taking part in activities, students will systematically develop their understanding of the key aspects of services marketing and, in particular, build skills in creating a positive customer experience in pre-purchase, purchase and post-purchase decision making for a service. Students will work on a project that allows them to understand the customer journey and map the service consumption process. The experiential approach underpinning this unit's learning and teaching strategy extends to practical and analytical approaches used in services marketing and user experience based on 'real-world examples.

Mode of delivery: This unit is offered in different modes. These are: "Attendance" mode, "Mixed" mode and "Online" mode. This unit is offered in three modes to cater to the learning needs and preferences of a range of participants and maximise effective participation for isolated and/or marginalised groups.

Attendance Mode

In an attendance mode, students will require face-to-face attendance in specific physical location/s. Students will have face-to-face interactions with lecturer(s) to further their achievement of the learning outcomes. This unit is structured with required upfront preparation before workshops, most students report that they spend an average of one hour preparing before the workshop and one or more hours after the workshop practicing and revising what was covered. The online learning platforms used in this unit provide multiple forms of preparatory and practice opportunities for you to prepare and revise.

Mixed Mode

In a mixed-mode, students will require intermittent face-to-face attendance determined by the School. Students will have face-to-face interactions with lecturer(s) to further their achievement of the learning outcomes. This unit is structured with required upfront preparation before workshops. The online learning platforms used in this unit provide multiple forms of preparatory and practice opportunities for you to prepare and revise.

Online Mode

In an online mode, students engage in asynchronous learning and participate in the construction and synthesis of knowledge, while developing their knowledge. Students are required to participate in a series of online interactive activities to enhance their learning including knowledge checks, discussion boards and self-paced exercises. This approach allows flexibility for students and facilitates learning and participation for students with a preference for virtual learning.

Assessment strategy and rationale

In order to pass this unit, students are required to demonstrate mastery of all learning outcomes and achieve an aggregate mark of at least 50%. Marking of each assessment task will be in accordance with rubrics specifically developed to measure student level of achievement of the learning outcomes for each assessment item.

Students will be awarded a final grade which signifies their overall achievement in the unit. The assessment strategy for this unit allows participants to sequentially develop their knowledge and skills in services marketing and customer experience to the point where they can understand, examine and apply relevant models and concepts to formulate strategies for real-world service firms. At the same time, students will also need to demonstrate the ability to identify, describe, analyse and evaluate the use of key customer experience metrics in service firms.

The assessment tasks for this unit are designed for students to demonstrate their achievement of each learning outcome as indicated in the following Assessment Table.

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate Capabilities

Assessment Task 1: Service Audit Report

Requires students to write a 1200-word report about the service quality of a service firm in a specific industry. Students will identify the service offering and analyse it from a customer experience perspective. As an outcome students will map the customer journey (service blueprint) and identify the pain points and flaws in customer experience management that hurts customer-centric culture.

 Submission Type: Group

Assessment Method: Diagnostic Report

Artefact: Written report

30%

LO1, LO2GC1, GC2, GC7, GC9

Assessment Task 2: Modified Service Blueprint

Students will develop a modified service map to improve the service delivery model. Assessment 2 will build on the initial service marketing review conducted in Assessment 1.

Students are to provide a 1500-word leave-behind report to accompany their service blueprint.

 Submission Type: Individual

Assessment Method: Service Modelling and Recommendation Report

Artefact: Activity responses and log 

30%

LO1, LO5GC1, GC7, GC8, GC9

.Assessment Task 3: Services marketing presentation

Requires students to develop a recovery plan for the service examined in the first and second assessment. The plan should focus on services marketing strategies that improve the customer experience metrics. Students will present an 8–10-minute self-video presentation.

Submission Type: Individual

Assessment Method: Video Presentation

Artefact: Video and slides

40%

LO3, LO4GC1, GC8, GC12

Representative texts and references

Chitty, W., D'alessandro, S., Gray, D. and Hughes, A., 2019. Services marketing.

Valarie A.. Zeithaml, Bitner, M.J. and Dwayne D.. gremler, 2018. Services marketing: integrating customer focus across the firm. McGraw-Hill Education.

Aliekperov, A., 2020. The Customer Experience Model. Routledge.

Cambra-Fierro, J., Gao, L.X., Melero-Polo, I. and Trifu, A., 2021. How do firms handle variability in customer experience? A dynamic approach to better understanding customer retention. Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services61, p.102578.

Kuppelwieser, V.G. and Klaus, P., 2021. Customer experience quality in African B2B contexts. Journal of Services Marketing.

Pecorari, P.M. and Lima, C.R.C., 2021. Correlation of customer experience with the acceptance of product-service systems and circular economy. Journal of Cleaner Production281, p.125275.

Babin, B.J., Zhuang, W. and Borges, A., 2021. Managing service recovery experience: effects of the forgiveness for older consumers. Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services58, p.102222.

Weber, K. and Hsu, C.H., 2021. Banding together in a festival context: Examining effects of a joint-stakeholder external service recovery. Tourism Management83, p.104204.

Shams, G., Rather, R., Rehman, M.A. and Lodhi, R.N., 2020. Hospitality-based service recovery, outcome favourability, satisfaction with service recovery and consequent customer loyalty: an empirical analysis. International Journal of Culture, Tourism and Hospitality Research.

Bonfanti, A., Vigolo, V. and Yfantidou, G., 2021. The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on customer experience design: The hotel managers’ perspective. International Journal of Hospitality Management94, p.102871.

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