Do Service Organizations Need a Different Strategic Marketing Planning? Gaps Analysis

Mamoun N. Akroush, Hani H. Al-Dmour

Abstract


The aim of this paper is to reveal theoretical gaps that have emerged from the strategic marketing planning literature that need more investigation. The reviewed literature has indicated that most of the previous empirical work of the strategic marketing planning literature has been overwhelmingly carried out in the physical goods organisations. There is lack of empirical studies in the field of strategic marketing planning among service organisations. We argue in this paper that there are gaps that have emerged from the strategic marketing planning literature, which require further examination.
1. There are little empirical studies on the practice of strategic marketing planning in service organisations that aim to reveal if this practice is different between goods and services organisations.
2. The examined literature revealed that there are almost no empirical studies in service organisations that are designed to investigate if formal planners perform better than non planners in service organisations.
3. There is dearth on empirical research studies that are designed to investigate if the comprehensiveness of the strategic marketing planning process leads to achieve better financial and non-financial performance in either goods or service organisations.
4. There are almost no empirical studies that are devoted to examine the theory and practice (a formalised and systemised process) of strategic marketing planning in service organisations.
5. There are very few empirical (especially quantitative studies) research projects that are designed to investigate and examine if a formalised and systemised process would lead to generate competitive marketing strategy that result in achieving superior financial and non-financial performance.
6. There is dearth on empirical studies that aim to investigate the effect of the unique characteristics of services, namely; intangibility, heterogeneity, inseparability, perishability and high labour intensive on the theory and practice of strategic marketing planning in service organisations.
7. Most of the strategic marketing planning literature has been carried out in the context of the traditional 4Ps (product, price, place and promotion) of the marketing mix paradigm, however, the expanded 3Ps (people, processes and physical evidence) of the services marketing mix paradigm have rarely been investigated in the strategic marketing planning literature or process. There are almost no empirical studies that aim to investigate the expanded three Ps in the theory and practice of the strategic marketing planning in service organisations.
8. Empirical research on the relationship between the strategic marketing planning and company performance has reported contradictory results concerning the effect of strategic marketing planning on company performance. More empirical studies are encouraged to examine the effect of strategic marketing planning on company performance to support or contradict the previous literature in different organisations, especially in service organisations.
9. More empirical studies are encouraged to examine if this effect is direct or indirect. In other words, empirical research is necessary to examine if the proposed relationship between the strategic marketing planning and company performance is (a) moderated by other variables e.g., the organisation characteristics (b) or/and mediated by other variables e.g., strategic marketing planning benefits.

Keywords


Strategic Marketing Planning, Services Marketing, Gaps Analysis, Service Organisations, Jordan.

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