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Case study

James B. Shein, Rebecca Frazzano and Evan Meagher

The case discusses the operational, strategic, and financial turnaround at Solo Cup, a manufacturer of disposable dining wares. Solo Cup’s troubles were compounded by the…

Abstract

The case discusses the operational, strategic, and financial turnaround at Solo Cup, a manufacturer of disposable dining wares. Solo Cup’s troubles were compounded by the acquisition of a larger rival, Sweetheart Company, which had its own problems and presented issues of merger integration that management could not solve. David Garfield, a managing director at turnaround consulting firm Alix Partners, must first recognize Solo Cup’s core competencies in order to determine the appropriate change in strategic course, strip out the assets that no longer support the operations necessary for that strategy, and monetize them in order to rationalize its balance sheet. This case teaches that a three-pronged approach will invariably produce greater results than any one-dimensional turnaround.

Students will learn turnaround techniques necessary to restructure a company operationally, strategically, and financially, and will learn how Alix Partners' relentless focus on “letting data rule” allowed the firm to revive a faltering company.

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Article

Chih-Chin Liang

The rapid growth of the solo economy in the Asia-Pacific area indicates an economic transition. In East Asia, solitary households are growing along with low marital rates…

Abstract

Purpose

The rapid growth of the solo economy in the Asia-Pacific area indicates an economic transition. In East Asia, solitary households are growing along with low marital rates and birth rates under high economic pressure. Because of these population changes, malls must provide good quality service to meet the specific needs of solitary households and social households. The paper aims to discuss this issue.

Design/methodology/approach

In this study, relationships among service quality, customer satisfaction (CS), perceived value, corporate image and customer loyalty were compared between social and solitary customers of Taiwan click-and-mortar malls. The effects of five service quality dimensions on CS and customer loyalty were investigated by structural equation modeling.

Findings

The analytical results show that all hypothesized relationships among factors were supported with the exception of the impact of perceived value on satisfaction and the impact of the corporate image on satisfaction. Additionally, the comparison between solitary and social customers showed that service quality, corporate image and customer loyalty have strong relationships without differences between both kinds of customers. Solitary and social customers only differed in the impact of perceived value on loyalty.

Practical implications

The managerial implication of this study is that, to satisfy both social and solitary customers and to increase their loyalty, Click-and-mortar malls (CAM malls) should apply different service quality strategies for social and solitary customers. To satisfy both types of customers, a strategy for increasing visible cares should be applied in social customers, and a strategy for increasing the perception of reliability, assurance and visible cares should be applied in solitary customers. To enhance the loyalty of solitary customers, a CAM mall should enhance the value perceived by solitary customers, which can help CAM malls increase the loyalty of solitary customers in the solo economy.

Originality/value

The solo economy is a hot topic in East Asia because the issue of solo economy impacts the market. A CAM mall must evolve its business to attract solitary customers. However, no studies compared perceived quality, satisfaction, perceived value, corporate image and loyalty between solitary customers and social customers. This study is the first study investigated the business model of CAM malls.

Details

Asia Pacific Journal of Marketing and Logistics, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-5855

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Article

Johannes Wollenburg, Alexander Hübner, Heinrich Kuhn and Alexander Trautrims

The advent of grocery sales through online channels necessitates that bricks-and-mortar retailers redefine their logistics networks if they want to compete online. Because…

Abstract

Purpose

The advent of grocery sales through online channels necessitates that bricks-and-mortar retailers redefine their logistics networks if they want to compete online. Because the general understanding of such bricks-and-clicks logistics systems for grocery is still limited, the purpose of this paper is to analyze the internal logistics networks used to serve customers across channels by means of an exploratory study with retailers from different contexts.

Design/methodology/approach

A total of 12 case companies from six European countries participated in this exploratory study. Face-to-face interviews with managers were the primary source for data collection. The heterogeneity of the sample enabled the authors to build a typology of logistics networks in grocery retailing on multiple channels and to understand the advantages of different warehousing, picking, internal transportation and last-mile delivery systems.

Findings

Bricks-and-mortar grocery retailers are leveraging their existing logistics structures to fulfill online orders. Logistics networks are mostly determined by the question of where to split case packs into customer units. In non-food logistics, channel integration is mostly seen as beneficial, but in grocery retailing, this depends heavily on product, market and retailer specifics. The data from the heterogeneous sample reveal six distinct types for cross-channel order fulfillment.

Practical implications

The qualitative analysis of different design options can serve as a decision support for retailers developing logistics networks to serve customers across channels.

Originality/value

The paper shows the internal and external factors that drive the decision-making for omni-channel (OC) logistics networks for previously store-based grocery retailers. Thereby, it makes a step toward building a contingency and configuration theory of retail networks design. It discusses in particular the differences between grocery and non-food OC retailing, last-mile delivery systems and market characteristics in the decision-making of retail networks design.

Details

International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, vol. 48 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0960-0035

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Article

Cathy Goodwin and Larry Lockshin

Considers the growing importance of the solo consumer in today′sservices marketplace. Suggests that marketers need to adapt to suchconsumers instead of stereotyping them…

Abstract

Considers the growing importance of the solo consumer in today′s services marketplace. Suggests that marketers need to adapt to such consumers instead of stereotyping them and perceiving them as “lonely” in a negative manner, which will only serve to drive away business. Examines the ways consumers canbecome stigmatized as a result of their treatment in the services marketplace. Offers suggestions for improving service to existing customers and for identifying future opportunities in reaching this growing market segment.

Details

Journal of Services Marketing, vol. 6 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0887-6045

Keywords

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Article

Lorraine Brown, Dimitrios Buhalis and Sean Beer

Solo travel for leisure and business is increasing. It is therefore timely to conduct research into the experiences of solo tourists. This paper aims to explore one aspect…

Abstract

Purpose

Solo travel for leisure and business is increasing. It is therefore timely to conduct research into the experiences of solo tourists. This paper aims to explore one aspect of the solo tourist experience that can be challenging, that of dining alone. This topic has received little attention in the tourism or hospitality literature.

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative approach was adopted and narrative inquiry was selected as the optimum route to obtain detailed and rich accounts of the experiences of solo diners. In-depth interviews of 27 solo tourists were conducted with varying socio-demographic characteristics.

Findings

This study shows that though travelling alone is prized by participants, dining alone, especially in the evening, is often discomfiting. Discomfort is caused by the perceived negative judgement of others and is mitigated by the use of various props such as books and mobile phones.

Research limitations/implications

A research agenda is put forward on the aspects of the solo tourist/diner experience.

Practical implications

The paper concludes by asking what can be done to ameliorate the solo dining experience and provides some recommendations to hospitality operators to support this market and improve competitiveness and profitability. The paper shows that inclusive environments can attract multiple market segments and agile restaurants can develop both solo and plural dining experiences.

Originality/value

This paper addresses a topic that has received limited scholarly attention as well as industry engagement despite the growth in solo travel.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 32 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

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Article

Joongwon Shin, Yoohee Hwang and Anna S. Mattila

Though social trends are driving consumers toward solo consumption of various services, many are reluctant to do so. There is little guidance for service providers as to…

Abstract

Purpose

Though social trends are driving consumers toward solo consumption of various services, many are reluctant to do so. There is little guidance for service providers as to how to effectively induce solo consumption. This study aims to examine the joint effect of self-esteem and an incidental similarity cue (e.g. a person’s initials) on anticipated satisfaction with with a solo consumption experience to fill this gap.

Design/methodology/approach

This study used a two-factor (incidental similarity cue and self-esteem) quasi-experimental design to test the hypotheses. The respondents read a scenario depicting a solo service consumption experience and completed scales that measured perceived fit with the service context and anticipated satisfaction with the experience.

Findings

Results indicate that, in the absence of an incidental similarity cue, self-esteem has a positive effect on solo consumers’ perceived fit. In the presence of such a cue, however, self-esteem has a minimal impact on perceived fit. Furthermore, perceived fit mediates the effect of self-esteem on anticipated satisfaction when the cue is absent.

Originality/value

The authors’ findings suggest that promoting incidental similarities with consumers may not be an efficient strategy to attract solo consumers. Conversely, service providers wishing to induce solo consumption may benefit from situationally increasing self-esteem among potential solo consumers. The current research advances the authors’ understanding of the effect of an incidental similarity cue and self-esteem in the context of a growing social trend of solo consumption.

Details

Journal of Services Marketing, vol. 32 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0887-6045

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Article

Divakar Goswami and Satish Raghavendran

The purpose of this paper is to establish the potential that mobile banking offers to both banks and mobile carriers. Acknowledging the inherent difficulties of

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to establish the potential that mobile banking offers to both banks and mobile carriers. Acknowledging the inherent difficulties of convergence between large and very different industries, it then explores the merits and shortcomings of existing partnership models and offers suggested best practices.

Design/methodology/approach

After in‐depth secondary research about the successes and failures of early mobile‐banking offerings, the report offers best‐practices based on a critical evaluation of partnership models.

Findings

Open‐federated models – involving partnerships between large numbers of banks and mobile carriers to provide a shared platform for mobile‐banking services – access the broadest customer base and minimize the costs of developing proprietary software and infrastructures. Qualcom‐owned Firethorn is an early USA‐based adopter of this model. In more mature mobile‐banking markets like New Zealand, upwards of 40 percent of an individual bank's customers use mobile‐banking offerings, resulting in heightened customer retention, increased self‐service, and mobile transactions that do not require additional investments in branches or ATM infrastructure.

Practical implications

As the banking and mobile industries collide, the inevitable complexities of cross‐industry convergence obstruct the paths to productive alliances. Even now, in the early years of mobile banking, there is a wealth of knowledge about partnership models to be gleaned from past success and failures. Forward‐looking executive eyes know that successful navigation will require a map, and an in‐depth look at the advantages and pitfalls of each existing model reveals a truer North.

Originality/value

Success in the mobile‐banking arena will require smart partnering decisions. Banks and mobile carriers have tested these waters timidly, and many of the resulting offerings were expensive to the banks and mobile carriers and less than enticing to their customers. This report weeds out ineffective partnering models that companies stumble into on their way to developing mobile‐banking and identifies the keys to successful partnerships.

Details

Journal of Business Strategy, vol. 30 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0275-6668

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Article

Xun Xu

This study aims to investigate the online customer review behavior and determinants of overall satisfaction with hotels of travelers in various travel group compositions.

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to investigate the online customer review behavior and determinants of overall satisfaction with hotels of travelers in various travel group compositions.

Design/methodology/approach

The author collected data from online reviews of travelers in various travel group compositions from 600 hotels in 100 of the largest cities in the USA from Booking.com and used latent semantic analysis (LSA) to identify the positive and negative factors from online reviews of travelers in various travel group compositions. Then, text regression was used to determine the influential factors of overall satisfaction of travelers in various travel group compositions.

Findings

It was found in this study that not all the positive and negative textual factors mined from travelers’ online reviews significantly influenced their overall satisfaction. In addition, the determinants of traveler satisfaction were different when travelers were in different travel group compositions.

Research limitations/implications

The author found similar online review behavior, but different basic, excitement and performance factors of travelers in different travel group compositions.

Practical implications

This study helps hoteliers understand customers’ perception of the specific attributes of their products and services, which provides a guideline for businesses to design the priority rule to improve these corresponding attributes and use market segmentation strategy when dealing with customers in different travel group compositions.

Originality/value

The author examined and compared the online review behavior and determinants of satisfaction using the factors mined from online reviews between travelers in various travel group compositions. This study combined customer ratings with textual reviews and predicted customer ratings from the factors extracted from textual reviews using LSA and text regression.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 30 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

Keywords

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Article

Shuang Ma, Huimin Gu, Yonggui Wang and Daniel P. Hampson

The purpose of this paper is to identify the double-edged sword of customer involvement (perceived relationship quality and coordination cost) in new service development…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to identify the double-edged sword of customer involvement (perceived relationship quality and coordination cost) in new service development in the hotel industry, and to explore when customers should be involved from the service provider’s view.

Design/methodology/approach

A total of 252 valid questionnaires were collected from hotel managers, and ordinary least squares regression analysis was conducted to test the hypotheses.

Findings

Results not only show that customer involvement causes higher coordination cost but also show no direct positive effect on perceived relationship quality. Furthermore, this study finds that service climate reduces the negative effect of customer involvement and enhances its positive effect. By contrast, customer complexity intensifies the negative effect of customer involvement.

Originality/value

This study empirically examines the double-edged sword of customer involvement and tests the boundary conditions associated with hotel back and front office factors (service climate versus customer complexity).

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 29 no. 12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

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Article

Greg Richards

This paper aims to analyse the development of research on gastronomic tourism experiences and chart its relationship to foundational management and marketing literature as…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to analyse the development of research on gastronomic tourism experiences and chart its relationship to foundational management and marketing literature as well as the tourism and hospitality field.

Design/methodology/approach

The author develops a literature review of papers in specialist journals and the SCOPUS database to identify major research themes and the evolution of experience and gastronomic experience research.

Findings

Gastronomy is an increasingly important element of tourism experiences. Gastronomic experience research in tourism mirrors the evolution in management and marketing theory from rational information processing approaches to emotional and hedonistic approaches and analysis of relationality and co-creation. The paper sketches a development from Experience 1.0 (producer-orientated) to Experience 2.0 (co-creation) to Experience 3.0 (foodscapes) in gastronomic experiences in tourism research.

Research limitations/implications

Increasing complexity of gastronomic experiences requires a more holistic analytic approach, including more attention for relational and co-creational processes. Linking together different experience elements and experience phases requires more holistic and contextual research approaches.

Practical implications

Hospitality organizations should recognize the differentiated and complex nature of gastronomic experiences, the different touchpoints within the customer journey and their relationship to experience outcomes. The development of hybrid gastronomic experiences offers both opportunities and challenges for the future.

Originality/value

This quantitative and qualitative literature analysis underlines the need for a more holistic approach to gastronomic experiences, covering different experiential phases and contexts of production and consumption.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 33 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

Keywords

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