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Article
Publication date: 1 May 2001

Ruth Ä. Schmidt and Elke A. Pioch

Building on a previous study of retail change the impact of the German unification on retail pharmacies is conceptualized in terms of the interaction between changes in…

Abstract

Building on a previous study of retail change the impact of the German unification on retail pharmacies is conceptualized in terms of the interaction between changes in system and life world with the retail pharmacist located at the interface between the two realms. A series of key informant interviews with retail pharmacists located in Berlin and Brandenburg forms the basis for grounded theory building. Differences between the previous system and the current status quo are examined and a tentative typology of eastern pharmacies posited.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 29 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2014

Jeff McCarthy, Jennifer Rowley, Catherine Jane Ashworth and Elke Pioch

The purpose of this paper is to contribute knowledge on the issues and benefits associated with managing brand presence and relationships through social media. UK football…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to contribute knowledge on the issues and benefits associated with managing brand presence and relationships through social media. UK football clubs are big businesses, with committed communities of fans, so are an ideal context from which to develop an understanding of the issues and challenges facing organisations as they seek to protect and promote their brand online.

Design/methodology/approach

Due to the emergent nature of social media, and the criticality of the relationships between clubs and their fans, an exploratory study using a multiple case study approach was used to gather rich insights into the phenomenon.

Findings

Clubs agreed that further development of social media strategies had potential to deliver interaction and engagement, community growth and belonging, traffic flow to official web sites and commercial gain. However, in developing their social media strategies they had two key concerns. The first concern was the control of the brand presence and image in social media, and how to respond to the opportunities that social media present to fans to impact on the brand. The second concern was how to strike an appropriate balance between strategies that deliver short-term revenue, and those that build longer term brand loyalty.

Originality/value

This research is the first to offer insights into the issues facing organisations when developing their social media strategy.

Details

Internet Research, vol. 24 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1066-2243

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Article
Publication date: 1 November 2004

Elke A. Pioch and Ruth A. Schmidt

Located as intermediaries between patients/customers and national health systems, community pharmacies have to negotiate increasing government demands for free advice…

Abstract

Located as intermediaries between patients/customers and national health systems, community pharmacies have to negotiate increasing government demands for free advice, pressure on their earnings and an increasingly deregulated market. A comparative assessment of the German and UK markets highlights the tensions pharmacists face as healthcare providers and retailers, assessing the ways in which each group copes with growing competitive challenges. Based on a grounded theory study of community pharmacies in Berlin/Brandenburg and the Greater Manchester area the role of pharmacies within their local neighbourhoods is discussed and the potential for the transfer of marketing intelligence between the two countries evaluated.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 32 no. 11
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

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Article
Publication date: 1 July 1992

Elke A. Pioch, Barry J. Davies and David Bennison

Assesses the likely impact of European legislation on the conduct ofpharmacy business in Britian and Germany. Examines the range of (proposed)legislation and inferences…

Abstract

Assesses the likely impact of European legislation on the conduct of pharmacy business in Britian and Germany. Examines the range of (proposed) legislation and inferences drawn about its likely impact; compares the differing national systems for the regulation of pharmacies and considers the “fit” between these systems and the European framework; addresses the possibilities for internationalization of the operations of pharmacies by opening in the other country. Concludes that current proposals may impact on British practices more severely. An apparent opportunity for expansion by British firms in Germany is shown to be limited by the presence of major drugstore chains in the German market, which are seen to have domestic advantages over incoming firms. Summarizes the legislation connected with the SEM and pharmacy in a Table showing anticipated consequences in the two countries.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 20 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

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Article
Publication date: 13 March 2009

Elke Pioch, Ulrike Gerhard, John Fernie and Stephen J. Arnold

This paper aims to explore Wal‐Mart's varying performance in Europe and eventual exit from the German market by singling out the role of consumer acceptance of Wal‐Mart's…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore Wal‐Mart's varying performance in Europe and eventual exit from the German market by singling out the role of consumer acceptance of Wal‐Mart's market propositions.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper uses the macro‐constructs of institutional theory to interpret and conceptualise micro‐level consumer data. Data were collected via telephone surveys in two regional German and UK markets in 2002/2003. Salient patronage norms in each market were established and Wal‐Mart's as well as its competitors' performance on those norms were assessed.

Findings

In the German context, the institutional theory approach to explaining Wal‐Mart's problems clearly foreshadows market failure and exit. In UK market, no clear pattern between retailers adhering to salient patronage norms, patronage behaviour and market position could be established. The constructs of institutional theory were more likely to predict and explain market failure than success.

Research limitations/implications

Research in two regional markets limits the applicability of findings. Nevertheless, some key issues seem to indicate overall market performance. The telephone survey approach carries inherent problems, which however have only marginally impacted on the relevance of the findings.

Originality/value

The use of institutional theory constructs adds a further dimension to the discussion of international retailer success/failure and can constitute a valuable tool in the repertoire of the divestment and failure literature.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 37 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 September 2001

Elke A. Pioch and Ruth A. Schmidt

In a highly regulated yet increasingly competitive environment the professional self‐ perception of German retail pharmacists is increasingly put under pressure. Whilst…

Abstract

In a highly regulated yet increasingly competitive environment the professional self‐ perception of German retail pharmacists is increasingly put under pressure. Whilst the professional image focuses on the pharmaceutical care side, survival and future profitability also depend on successful commercial differentiation as a means of counteracting declining average margins. Presents the findings from a grounded theory study amongst retail pharmacists in Berlin and Brandenburg. Legal restrictions on manipulating the conventional marketing mix are discussed and alternative strategic moves towards differentiation explored. A tentative typology of pharmacies is developed, highlighting the importance of collaborative links and a strategic business perspective to future survival and prosperity.

Details

Marketing Intelligence & Planning, vol. 19 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-4503

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 July 2004

Ruth A. Schmidt and Elke A. Pioch

As providers of emergency medication, expert advice and specialist healthcare services, retail pharmacies are central to their neighbourhoods. Traditionally, recognition…

Abstract

As providers of emergency medication, expert advice and specialist healthcare services, retail pharmacies are central to their neighbourhoods. Traditionally, recognition of this vital contribution to the community has been reflected in special protective measures at the macro level, making the pharmacy sector one of the most highly regulated within the UK retail industry. However, recent deregulation measures in relation to all aspects of the services marketing mix, namely products, price, place, promotion, physical evidence, people and processes, have made for a dynamic competitive climate with increasing pressures on the livelihood of small‐ to medium‐sized enterprises. Strategies for success are discussed.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 32 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2004

Elke Pioch and John Byrom

The importance of location to retail organisations has long been recognised in the geography and retail marketing literatures, with subjective and “gut feel” methods of…

Abstract

The importance of location to retail organisations has long been recognised in the geography and retail marketing literatures, with subjective and “gut feel” methods of evaluation emerging as highly significant factors in the decision‐making process. Through the application of existing frameworks we seek to highlight the importance of location to small independent retailers in the context of outdoor leisure retailing. The case of “UpFront”, a pseudonym for a retailer operating four outlets in Great Britain, is presented. It is shown that, although based largely on luck and opportunism, the firm's locational “strategy” has been crucial to its success as a leading player in the sector. Based on detailed interviews with the managing director and employees, the role and importance of location as a critical success factor to the organisation is presented. In conclusion, a call is made for greater engagement with the nuances of location to small retail organisations, given its impact on a large number of retail operations.

Details

Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, vol. 11 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1462-6004

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Article
Publication date: 1 October 2003

Ruth A. Schmidt and Elke A. Pioch

The advent of Internet trading in medicines, as epitomized by the recently attempted market entry of the Dutch Internet pharmacy DocMorris into the tightly regulated…

Abstract

The advent of Internet trading in medicines, as epitomized by the recently attempted market entry of the Dutch Internet pharmacy DocMorris into the tightly regulated German retail pharmacy sector, presents a new competitive challenge to this industry. Based on the findings of a 1999 field study of retail pharmacies in Berlin and Brandenburg and an examination of pharmacy Web sites, as well as pharmacy related professional portals and networks on the Internet, this paper applies Bickerton et al.’s framework of competitive forces to structure the analysis of attitudes and developments in the application of information technology in this sector.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 105 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

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Article
Publication date: 1 July 2005

Ruth Ä. Schmidt and Elke A. Pioch

Despite their essential role as providers of emergency medication, expert advice and specialist healthcare services UK community pharmacies are coming under increasing…

Abstract

Purpose

Despite their essential role as providers of emergency medication, expert advice and specialist healthcare services UK community pharmacies are coming under increasing competitive pressure. Deregulation measures and heightened competition from supermarkets and multiples have led to increases in market concentration and forced many independents into closure. This paper aims to explore the potential of retail branding as a tool for independent pharmacists who wish to complement their role as therapeutic experts with a strong retail proposition and enhance their competitive positioning.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on a qualitative study using key informant interviews with independent pharmacists in the Greater Manchester area, this paper takes a grounded theory approach. NVivo qualitative analysis software was applied to develop theoretical categories, explore themes and offer a starting point for theory building.

Findings

The UK pharmacy market is polarized into the highly branded large scale multiples and an independent sector which still fails to make full use of the opportunities for retail marketing support available. A SWOT analysis for the community pharmacy sector illustrates pharmacists' key strengths as healthcare professionals and therapeutic expert advisors. However, often this is complemented by an inward looking, reactive and short‐termist approach. Overall respondents fail to embrace the opportunities marketing and retail branding might offer on the retail side fully, to the detriment of overall business success.

Research limitations/implications

The paper is based on a small scale qualitative study. Whilst the sample was carefully selected to be a fair representation of the different types of small retail pharmacies found in the Greater Manchester area, and within this context ecological validity is thought to be high, care must be taken with wider generalisations.

Practical implications

Possibilities of complementing pharmacists' professional ethos as therapeutic experts with lessons from the retail marketing and branding literature with the aim of achieving image congruence and business success are explored.

Originality/value

A contribution is made to the understanding of the UK retail pharmacy sector, as well as the complex interaction between professional healthcare provision and retail marketing in relation to the self‐concept and business practice of independent pharmacists.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 33 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

Keywords

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