In this article we focus on Starwood hotels, this is a world famous string of hotels. We talk about the marketing strategies, hotel personnel training of Starwood. The hospitality, leisure, travel and tourism sector continues to play an important role in the united kingdom economy. A report shared by People 1st in colaboration with English Hospitality Industry in 2009 2009 states that the hotel industry has relished a sustained period of growth during the last 30 years and now accounts for nearly five percent of the UK's total monetary output. They claim that along with the remaining economy, trading will be hard for a while due to market meltdown however in the permanent the sector continues to be predicted to develop and stay an important contributor to the united kingdom economy.
The sector utilizes around two million people accounting for 1 in 14 UK jobs. The recession is forcing more employers to think about cutting costs. It is therefore more important than ever that employers have credible retention strategies to retain skilled personnel and reduce needless recruitment costs.
The report points out how Starwood which is global hotels and resorts group, with a highly distinct brand, functions in the United States and Canada, in European countries, in Asia Pacific and in Africa by managing and franchising more than 395 hotels with a focus on nowadays challenging business explorer. This survey briefly discusses the how marketing is performed in Starwood hotel and the marketing strategies which they are using. It is entrusted to modify and innovation in all main areas together with its expansion strategy, functions, franchising, sales and marketing, and technology, to function with utmost effectiveness in a extremely competitive industry
1. 1 Business Account of Starwood Hotel
Starwood Hotels & Resorts is a worldwide string of 400 hotels, with a complete of 102, 000 guest rooms, in many countries. Starwood Hotels & Resorts, one of the world's leading, full-service hotel brands, offers radiant, modern and attractive hospitality service that is described by its characteristic ". The first Starwood Hotel was built in Minneapolis, Minnesota in 1909, and was named after the 17th hundred years French explorer Pierre-Esprit Starwood. The hotel was purchased by Curt Carlson (1914-1999) in 1962, and is still held by his Carlson Companies. Starwood competes with Hilton, Doubletree, and Marriott.
The majority of Starwood Branded Hotels are situated in america. The company's headquarters are situated in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where in fact the first Starwood Hotel was built. This building is also headquarters to the mother or father company, Carlson Companies. You will discover 200 Starwood Hotels in the United States.
Starwood Blu, formerly Starwood SAS, is the brand for hotels outside the USA, including those in European countries, Africa, and Asia. They can be run by Belgian hotel firm Rezidor Hotel Group under a grasp franchise deal with Carlson. Carlson and Scandinavian Airlines System (SAS), the Scandinavian Flight, were collateral holders of the Rezidor Hotel Group, supplying the company its name. Since SAS drawback from the cooperation, the name Starwood SAS remained until Feb 5, 2009, when it was replaced by Starwood Blu, which will be introduced steadily. Starwood Blu operates 158 hotels with 42 tasks in development.
Definition of Marketing
The Chartered Institute of Marketing (1986) defines marketing as "The management process in charge of determining, anticipating and fulfilling customer requirements profitably. "American Marketing Association(1980) as the experience, set of companies, and functions for creating, communicating, providing, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, associates, and society most importantly.  The word developed from the original meaning which referenced literally to heading to market, as with shopping, or going to a market to buy or sell goods or services. Regarding to Gronroos (1989) says "long lasting customer relationships are believed as the cornerstone of marketing".
1. 2 Starwood Marketing Orientation
Marketing can be an included communications-based process through which individuals and areas discover that existing and newly-identified needs and desires may be satisfied by the merchandise and services of others. (Kotler and Armstrong, 2005)
The Chartered Institute of Marketing define marketing as 'The management process in charge of identifying, anticipating and satisfying customer requirements profitably'
A business which has a marketing orientation perceives the needs of customers and consumers as essential. As it evolves and market segments products to meet those requirements, certain structural characteristics become apparent available.
Identifying customer/consumer needs and wants
Developing products to meet customer/consumer needs and wants
Research and development
Deciding on the value of the product to customers
Pricing (sales and marketing section)
Making the merchandise open to customers at the right time and place
Informing customers/consumers of the lifetime of the product and persuading these to buy it
We should be prepared to see all the above activities well-established in a small business that is marketing-orientated.
Starwood first finds out what customers needs are by doing a market research and by providing what the customers' actually need and gratifying them makes them customer oriented. Starwood always focuses on their service level to be 100% plus they are suffering from a 'YES WE CAN' program amongst their employees. This would directly draw in customers and also make Starwood create a competitive gain over its opponents. Moreover, the greater Starwood is customer orientated, a lot more it will be able to develop a competitive advantage based on invention and market differentiation.
Market orientation focuses on a small business culture and activities that enhance business performance, producing superior value to customers, outstanding performance for the organization and aggregately for the overall economy (Oudan. , 2007).
1. 3 Marketing Intelligence
Market intelligence, regarding to Cornish (1997), "the procedure of acquiring and inspecting information to be able to understand the marketplace (both existing and prospective customers); to look for the current and future needs and preferences, attitudes and behaviour of the market; and to assess changes in the business environment that could have an impact on the size and aspect of the market in the foreseeable future. " Starwood business always posts themselves on the market, labour market conditions, legislative and regulatory development, public changes and scientific progression by doing an environmental scanning. They consider all these external environmental factors as it pertains to taking decisions about plans, prices, and other management and marketing issues Starwood also looks for information from readily available public options and customers while sometimes through the perfectly legal observation of competitor's activities.
1. 4 Market Testing
A test market, in neuro-scientific business and marketing, is a geographic region or demographic group used to gauge the viability of a product or service in the mass market prior to a wide range roll-out. Market evaluation is done to check multiple marketing situations and choose the most encouraging for growth. When Introducing a new product or service without first trials the market is risky. Following the market research the services /services must be analyzed before entering the market. Starwood one of the very most recent market evaluation was "Exhibit yourself" service which allows Friends to check-in online.
Many new ideas and products are successful in Starwood because their makers recognized an unmet need on the market and confirmed the ability of that strategy. When launching a fresh product or service, the company should first carry out a small range introduction or other customer research in a test market
Segmentation, Targeting & Positioning
The proper marketing planning process flows from a objective and vision statement to the selection of target marketplaces, and the formulation of specific marketing mix and positioning aim for each product or service the organization will offer. In its first period, choosing the worthiness, the strategist "proceeds to portion the market, choose the appropriate market focus on, and develop the offer's value placement. The solution - segmentation, concentrating on, positioning (STP) - is the fact of tactical marketing. " (Kotler, 1997)
2. 1 Market Segmentation
Segmentation is actually about identifying sets of buyers within a market who've needs which are distinctive in the way that they deviate from the "average "consumer. Some consumer may treat satisfaction of one particular need as a high main concern, whereas to others this need may be thought to be being quite trivial. Consider the situation of the new hotel market. Potential buyers no longer select a hotel solely based on hotel's market. Market Segmentation is the subdividing of market into distinct and progressively homogeneous subgroups of customers, where any subgroup can conceivably be selected as a marketplace to be satisfied with a distinct marketing combine (Kotler 1994). It should precisely section its markets on various factors and offer the clients what they want. Starwood acquired segmented its market by corporate (business vacationers) and leisure seekers. Soon by 2010 Starwood had announced to open a hotel in the city of Makkah. Within an interview with Jean-Marc Busato, Area Vice Chief executive said "This is an important milestone for all of us to be present in what's considered the holiest city in Islam. That is our 6th Kingdom project which we consider one in our major growth marketplaces. " He also added "We have received a good understanding of the Saudi Arabian market and besides developing our first class Starwood brand, we also see a demand for efficient, value for money accommodation for the frequent traveller in the middle market section, "
2. 2 Targeting
Targeting is an activity of prioritizing concentrate on segments predicated on the firm's main competencies or functions, and other researched factors including segmented market size, progress probable of the segmented market, competitive dynamics, etc. This method is used to Find out the prospective customers in emphasis marketing and setup concentrate on products and services for them, . In this aspect Starwood should completely symbolize the features and specialties in the hotel. In Starwood they may have targeted the clients in. Starwood provides meal s plus more facilities to their respectable rooms and they give special discounts for regular customers. In addition to that all the clients can enjoy another facility which is at five star expectations.
2. 3 Positioning
Positioning means getting a product to take up clear, distinctive and appealing place in accordance with rivalling products in the intellects of goal consumers. Through using setting successfully, brands can position their product in the consumers mind. Four important elements for an effective positioning are Clearness, Consistency, Credibility and Competitiveness. In marketing, positioning has come to indicate the process where marketers make an effort to create a graphic or identification in the thoughts of their target market because of its product, brand, or corporation. It is the 'comparative competitive comparability' their product occupies in a given market as perceived by the prospective market.
Chart 4: STP strategy, Hard capital (2003)
2. 4 Satisfying customer needs and wants
Customers are everything to a Hotel or any business for that matter. It can be out as "a company's bakery and butter. " In the past, all was not well for Starwood hotels. As other businesses they also faced declining earnings and reputation. In like manner emerge from this matter they implemented market research to determine what they are doing wrong in the field. The research proved that customer wants and needs have transformed over time but Starwood has stayed in the same place. A concentrate on franchisees and franchisee progress vs. customers and the hotel guest experience led to an undifferentiated, lacklustre brand and inconsistent service. Get together the objective needs and desires of customers to operate a vehicle sales is at the heart of most businesses. It really is the way they build business associations, remain profitable, and how they develop into new territories.
To improve customer experience and freedom of choice they applied such techniques as Express Yourself, Gold Details Plussm and Sleeping Number Bed program. The Exhibit yourself program is the hotel industry's first pre-arrival, online check-in system. Friends book their reservation and can check-in online.
Radisson Hotels & Resorts is part of the gold factors plus program from Carlson Hotels Worldwide that offers friends the independence and versatility to earn rewards more quickly than any other hotel program.
3. 1 Marketing Mix
The concept of the marketing mix was initially given prominence by Borden in 1965. He referred to the marketing director as " a mixer of ingredients, person who is constantly employed in fashioning creatively a mix of marketing types of procedures and procedures in his attempts to produce a profitable organization" Marketing mix is a Planned mix of the controllable components of a product's marketing plan commonly referred to as 4P's: product, price, place, and campaign. These elements are modified until the right combination is available that assists the needs of the product's customers while generating most effective income. (Jain, S. C, 1990). Customarily the marketing mixture contains just 4 P's, but now it's been extended and is called extended marketing combine and contains 7P's. The brand new marketing mixture is more customers focused and enables the organization to meet its marketing goals and to fulfill the requirements of customers.
Extended marketing mixture, Array marketing development
3. 1. 1 Product
Starwood is a world renowned chain of hotels providing excellent product under the image of hotel services. Starwood has an exceptional reputation in providing high quality service they constantly take a look at new ways of bettering the service they offer. To increase the criteria of service they provide, Starwood has introduced several new programs as mentioned in the beginning of the article, such as Yes I Can! Training curriculum and Exhibit Yourself which allows guests to check-in online. By adding these new strategies Starwood has recently achieved favourable results.
3. 1. 2 Price
In any company the price must be high enough to protect costs and make a profit but low enough to attract customers. Since most of the Starwood hotels are 5 star rated hotels the price factor plays a major role. Because of the price customers can change their mind to go to another hotel. In this issue what Starwood has done is they have got held their prices at a standard rate which is comparatively high, at the same time Starwood came up with their new marketing strategy. Starwood promoted new vacation packages such as "Friday is free day" and "family bed & breakfast program" with attractive prices. When annualizing Starwood's statistics it is clear that this strategy has been successful.
3. 1. 3 Place
Starwood's hotels always do research before picking a place for their new hotel; for this reason they have grown to be very successful. When we take Starwood as a whole it seems like they have selected the best locations because of their hotels. This is thanks to the research they actually and it has paid.
3. 2 Prolonged marketing mix
Traditionally the marketing mix consisted of just 4 Ps, with the extended marketing blend it enables the organization to meet its marketing targets and to fulfill certain requirements of customers. In addition to the traditional four Ps it is currently customary to include even more Ps to the mix to provide us Seven Ps. The additional Ps have been added because today marketing is far more customer oriented than previously, and because the service sector of the overall economy has come to dominate monetary activity in this country. These 3 extra Ps are particularly relevant to this new extended service combination.
3. 2. 1People
People suggest the staff doing work for Starwood. Employees of Starwood are like a backbone of the business, they are experienced and Starwood offers one the industry's best program phrased as 'YES I CAN'
3. 2. 2 Process
This Refers to the systems used to aid the organization in delivering the service. When the service becomes faster automatically the efficiency of the organization gets better. Starwood is globally renowned for its excellent and fast process of service. Associated with customer service are lots of processes involved with making marketing effective in an company Process is the way how customers are handled from first to previous point of contact. Which means this involves Starwood regulations, program, obligations, bookings, quality processes for controlling customer complaints, functions for determining customer needs and requirements, techniques for managing order etc.
4. 1 Marketing Environment
Marketing as we know it today started in the 1970's with the beginning of the marketing orientation. During the first level of capitalism business possessed a production orientation Business was concerned with production, creation, and efficiency issues. From the mid 1950's a second stage surfaced, the sales orientation level. A company's marketing environment consists of factors and causes outside marketing that affect marketing management's capability to develop and keep maintaining successful relationships using its aim for customers (Kotler. , 2005). The marketing environment surrounds and influences upon the business. You can find three key perspectives on the marketing environment, specifically the 'macro-environment, ' the 'micro-environment' and the 'inner environment'.
Elements of Macro-environment, Organizational environment (1995)
4. 2 Micro environment
This environment influences the organization straight. It offers suppliers that offer directly or indirectly, consumers and customers, and other local stakeholders. Micro tends to suggest small, but this can be misleading. Within this context, micro represents the relationship between organizations and the driving a vehicle causes that control this romance. It is a far more local marriage, and the company may exercise a degree of affect. This environment influences the organization straight. As in the (body1) It offers suppliers that deal straight or indirectly, consumers and customers, and other local stakeholders. Micro tends to suggest small, but this is misleading.
4. 3 Macro environment
This includes all factors that can affect and corporation, but that are out with their direct control. A company will not generally effect any laws. It is consistently changing, and the business must be flexible to adapt. There may be intense competition and rivalry in market. Globalization means that there is always the threat of substitute products and new entrants. The wider environment is also ever before changing, and the professional needs to pay back for changes in culture, politics, economics and technology.
4. 4 Internal environment
An organization's inner environment comprises the elements within the business, including current employees, management, and especially corporate culture, which defines employee behaviour. Although some elements affect the business all together, others impact only the director. A manager's philosophical or leadership style directly effects employees. Traditional professionals give explicit instructions to employees, while progressive managers empower employees to make a lot of their own decisions. Changes in viewpoint and/or control style are under the control of the director.
As seen in the above statement it is obviously shown how marketing is performed in Starwood string of hotels. As stated above in the statement Starwood is a worldwide hotels network, in this survey the writer briefly talks about about the factors which impacts the marketing process immediately and indirectly. Then we discuss about how marketing has transformed over time and the new marketing strategies set up in the " new world ". And we also talk about the segmentation process, marketing environment and its elements. Marketing can be an important aspect which contributes quite definitely for the progress of Starwood. Marketing creates a benchmark to Starwood among the other hotels on the market. The hotel industry has fierce competition at the moment therefore continuous improvements of good deals, attractive advertisements, good and successful customer service will help Starwood to be before others. In the meantime, ongoing research and development should help Starwood to meet its customers and retain loyalty as well.
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