Furthermore I would like to thank the Management of Park for allowing me to use the facilities throughout this project and my colleagues for their input. Also, I like to thank the participants in my survey, who have willingly shared their precious time during the process of interviewing. I would like to thank my loved one, who has supported me, both by keeping me harmonious and helping me putting pieces together. 5 1. 1 Background Internet users' have grown exponentially. Websites allowing its users to share content are increasing rapidly.
The primary service offered by social networking sites is the possibility to connect to people and create, share and collaborate. The extensive use of social networking sites by individuals has allowed organizations to use it effectively for other activities such as marketing. Companies are willing to pay a lot of money to advertise on these websites and access the information made available by its users. Other organizations are using these websites to extend their marketing efforts and create loyalty among their customers. The Marketing has evolved over centuries from traditional practices to modern ones.
O'Connor et al (2004) said that direct and database marketing might be fairly well understood, but tools available to today's marketing managers. Social network marketing is the most recent practice used by marketers and the common marketing tools that are used are Faceable, Linked, Twitter, e-mail marketing, blobs, video promotion and Youth. This shift from traditional marketing o internet marketing is part of a process that has taken place over the past decade. The growth of social network sites has not gone unnoticed; within a few years, they have entirely changed the landscape of internet.
The media is constantly reporting the growth and use of social network sites, while investors are willing to invest millions in companies that lack even the most basic principles of business models. Marketing literature has always associated high value to word-of-mouth promotions, with social networking sites, this concept has revolutionized. Allowing content to be shared immediately around to globe with lions of other people, hence it may come as no surprise that academics and professionals are extensively discussing the use of social networking sites as marketing tool. This study will show how Park has improved the marketing of -? .
Park and which tools are most appropriate. 1. 2 Aims To analyses how social network marketing can be used for effective marketing of The Park Nature & Leisure Park. 1. 3 Objectives Determine which Social Media tools are most appropriate to improve marketing of The Park Nature & Leisure Park. 1. 4 Overview of ................. Park Park opened in 1979 and is today the pioneer in leisure industry in Mauritius. The park covers 14 hectares and shelter 1,500 birds, lions, zebras, giant tortoises, monkeys, tigers and many other animals. During the past financial year, The Park recorded 246,632 visitors.
Overall, average entry ticket revenue rose by 11%, and total revenue exceeded RSI 38. 7 million, representing an increase of 26% over the previous year. The number of visitors to Nature Escapade activities increased by 36% compared with the preceding year. Revenue from Quads/CSV's (representing 60% of total revenue derived from all activities) increased by 9%, with revenue from the Seaway activity soaring by 12%. The basic zip-line circuit and other activities produced a 35% increase in revenue. The Park revenues through AS increased by 84% owing to the lion cubs and the opening of the "drive thru".
The development of the Safari Photo facilities with an additional bus generated a 35% increase in volume and revenue. For the coming introducing key elements for the future base of the park, such as a dedicated and international park management system. The park received the Mauritius Green Award two years consecutive under the category Green Endeavourers in the Tourism Sector. It also received a Certificate of Excellence from Trip Advisor for year 2012. During the year 2012, The Park has consolidated its structure and prepared a master plan in close cooperation with Median Property.
New products launched in the year under review will be in operation for the full financial year, and will be supported by a sales and marketing plan dedicated to building the The Park brand with a full array of communication tools including the use of the internet and social networks. The Park and its associated activities posted a 17% growth to reach MURK 136 million in revenue in the year under review, in line with the business development strategy initiated recently and the investment made, confirming the high growth potential of this business activity.
The Park and its associated activities were the main driving force in the Leisure cluster's profitability and produced improved profits of RSI 34 million, compared with RSI 31 million in the preceding year. Long-term development opportunities are being explored with the setting-up of a Master Plan, while for the immediate future, efforts are invested in optimizing the operational structure to provide a better product offering and maximize the potential of the site and the activities that can be carried out there.
In the future plans, The Park will focus on emotions of the customer experience a unique adventure through dedicated visuals different segments of the population, such as the family or the young, all future target customers. 8 This chapter examines the literature review relevant to social network marketing in proving how this new marketing tool helps to improve the marketing concepts when marketers have to take decisions. 2. 1 Marketing Evolution - a historical perspective Marketing is commonly believed to have progressed through five distinct phases of evolution.
The simple trade era, the production era, the sales era, the marketing apartment era and the marketing company era and D. Steven White (2010) states that the classical progression taught in business schools today to tomorrow's marketing leaders. But is it an accurate and complete representation of the different eras of marketing? According to D. Steven White (2010), since the post-World-War II, marketing is evolving in twenty cycles, more or less. Thus, while the classical five era not be or it may represent the difference between success and failure.
Knowing the game and how it is played is a necessary and critical component of winning the game. The five classical eras before making the case for the two new eras are: ; First era known as simple trade era, where everything available was made or harvested by hand and available in limited supply. Exploration and trade in resources was the focus of the economic activity. Commodities ruled the day; this era lasted from the beginning to the mid-19th century. Then this era was replaced by the production era at the time of the industrial revolution.
This focus on production was fuelled by such milestones as Henry Ford's invention of the assembly line and the more efficient work principles advances by Frederick W. Tailor's scientific management movement (Huber, 1964). Mass production increased the availability of product options in the marketplace. This is the era of the field of dreams business philosophy of 'if you build it, they will come', successful only because there were few alternative product options available. The Sales era to push products on the market place using various sales techniques.
Marketing Department Era focused on which products to produce or not produce and incorporating procurement, advertising and sales into single marketing department. The Marketing Company Era allowing the Marketing Department to guide the erection of production for the company. 9 2. 2 The Shift from Traditional to Sales and Marketing Orientation The era lasted approximately 60 years from 1860 to 1920 which brought us to the sales era where consumer demand became saturated. Business could hardly sell everything they produced; competition for market share increased.
Products became commodities and price became the distinguishing competitive advantage. This era lasted only 20 years from 1920 to 1940. After the World War II, the economy fostered the emergence of marketing department era where manufacturing firms realized that the sales orientation of the sat was not resonating with consumers. New levels of affluence provided consumers with more power in the marketplace. Business consolidated unarticulated activities such as advertising, sales, promotions, public relations, etc. Into a single department.
This was the time were businesses realized that The marketing company era emerged once the premise of the marketing concept became widely accepted. The marketing concept, in brief, contends that businesses exist to address customer needs. That is, the customer is the focus of our business endeavourers. No longer was marketing compartmentalized. It became the goal of the cuisines. All employees became part of the marketing efforts, either directly or indirectly, and the customer became the king. It is the final phase in the classical theory of marketing evolution.
It began in sass's and 1990. According to an article entitled, 'Marketing: Historical Perspectives', a sixth era is identified as the relationship marketing era. The objective is to build a long-term mutually beneficial, relationship with the customer. The focus changed to lifetime customer value and customer loyalty. Customer lifetime value reflects the present total value of a customer to the company over its lifetime. This concept implies that each customer or customer segment differs with respect to their value to the company.
Customer value relates to the difference between what a customer gets from a product, and what he or she has to give in order to get it; and the customer loyalty is both an attitudinal and behavioral tendency to favor one brand over all others, whether due to satisfaction with the product or service, its convenience or performance, or simply familiarity and comfort with the brand. 10 Customer relationship management (CRM) and data-mining became the buzzwords in marketing. Getting all systems in synchrony to capture information about each customer's behavior is still, at best, a work in progress.
The key to building relationships is trust, thus its importance as the central tenet relationship marketing. Clearly the marketing era exists and is in play today, from 1990 to 2010. But is it the end of the evolutionary process? The answer seems to be No! The actual era would be the social network marking which is experiencing a rapid growth; there seem to be no limit to their size. Many social networking sites boast with millions of members using their networks on jugular basis to communicate, share, create and collaborate with others.
The shift from traditional to the social network era will be dealt with in the next topic. 2. 3 Technology Evolution position of the customer as there is a move into a decade of social business. Before accessing to modern technologies, it was a challenge for the customer, consumers - the buyer - to engage with companies that weren't convenient to them. For many, this was dealing with those within the local geography. And put the buyer at the request of the seller. As time went on, there was greater focus on margins and the pressure was felt by the rye.
However, as technology spread - in the form of PC's, then the Internet, then mobile devices, then smart phones - buyers, customers, and consumers felt more empowered to deal with companies and corporations of their choosing. With social media, the last few years have seen a tremendous change in how customers can now openly review and engage with companies, provide insight into products and services, negotiate prices with greater effectiveness, and have insights at their fingertips that were previously only held by a select few. 1 2. 4 The contemporary approach to social network marketing The abrupt coming out of social network in the public realm and the realization of an influential and coordinated online consumer-force has raised alarms in companies all over. Since consumers increasingly influence each other and share supporting views on products and services on the internet, businesses are bound to rethink and reorganize marketing and communication strategies in order to address this threat to traditional ways of doing business.
The difficulty is to understand the true benefits of the power of social networking in marketing initiatives even if the companies are keen to shift in this new trend and to adopt it. Such questions as the cost, what will be the investment value, will it be worth investing? Or about which market it wants to target or even will there be an impact of the services as there can be both positive and negative comments and if companies are ready to take the risk? Researchers have proved the power of social network marketing, for example, when Volkswagen set-up a Namespace. Mom site for Helga, the German-accented, dominatrix- type blonde who appears in its controversial Volkswagen GET ads, tens of thousands of fans signed up as friends' and companies regularly posts ads or custom videos on video-sharing sites such as You Tube. In addition to consumers-oriented social network sites, many professional and trade associations have set up networks to exchange information of particular interest to member, for example the social networking site "Linked" is particularly aimed at professionals.
This literature review will try to find out if current social network theories and concepts are relevant and applicable to long-held marketing principles and business in a consumer marketing environment. 2. 5 Social Network Marketing Social network marketing is the process of marketing through social media sites such as Faceable, Linked, Twitter and many others. The magic of social network is that it is able to connect and interact on a personalized and dynamic level as compared to traditional marketing. 2 Marketers need to be where their customers and potential customers are and more and more this is on social networking sites. Most of them have started using social networks to market their business and to gain financial freedom. This helps to market and offers the product or service to the appropriate audience and provides significant benefits using the dialogues and personal connections and to gain more and more audience for the product or service, but the question is "do people on social networking likes open commercial messages? There are huge amount of active users across sites like Faceable, Twitter, Namespace and Linked. According to an article by Emil Promotional (2012), 10. 5 billion total minutes are spent on Faceable daily excluding the mobile devices in January 2012. Given that Faceable has 845 million active users as of December 2011, this means each user is spending an average of 12 minutes and 26 seconds on social network. Social network has become a rapidly growing global phenomenon spreading across the world. In March 2013, the active users on faceable were 1. 1 billion as compared o Twitters last report dated 7th May 2013, where there were 554 million of users. According to Chaffed and Smith (2008) well-run communities on the social networks strengthen relationships, trust and loyalty, as well as maintaining brand awareness in the minds of the community members. Communities also allow a unique opportunity to stay close to customers, their concerns, their worries and their desires. Despite these benefits, building an active community can be time consuming and difficult though cheap.
Careful moderation and seeding of topics from a subject expert may be required. An alternative approach is to link up to an established immunity that has greater independence. Either way social networks are the part of the dynamic dialogue and dynamic opportunities that today's marketer enjoy. 2. 6 Social Network 'Social network being not only the expansion of the number of business and or social contacts by making connections through individuals; it allows many users to be part of a virtual community.
The most common social network websites are Faceable, Linked or Twitter which provide users with simple tools to create a custom profile with text and pictures. A usual profile includes basic information about the user, at least one photo, and sibyl a blob or other comments published by the user. Advanced profiles may include videos, photo albums, online applications (in Faceable), or custom layouts (in Namespace). After creating a profile, users can add friends, send messages to other users, and leave comments directly on friends' profiles.
These features provide the building blocks for creating online communities. Users can also share their lives with other people without needing to develop and publish their own home pages. These websites also provide an important linking element between users that allows friends to communicate directly with each other. Since people often have friends from different places and different times in their lives, social networking sites provide an opportunity to keep in touch with old friends and to meet new people as well.
This means that unknown people may also be able to view your profile page. Therefore, when Joining a social networking website, it is primordial to review the privacy settings for the account and remember to always use discretion in the publication on the profile. 2. 7 Social Network - Benefits and Drawbacks Social networks have revolutionized the way people interact. Instant access to efferent groups and individuals, allowing people to interact with each other regardless of geological location or timeshare.
It acts as a platform of connecting businesses with potential customers. Since social network websites offer considerable benefits, the reasons for it its popularity; there are also some significant drawbacks which should be avoided before deciding to adopt this tool when marketing products or simply signing up on these social networks. 2. 7. 1 Benefits of Social Network Social network has many advantages; the main one is cost related and the majority of social network sites are free to access, create profile and post information.