Customer perception on the effectiveness of marketing practices: a comparative study of selected firms in the lubricants market in Kenya
Companies in the oil industry have been experiencing drastic changes in the market share and customer loyalty. The industry is .characterized by customer shifts and switches. This is occurring despite all companies employing marketing strategies to enhance their market presence. Due to aggressive marketing strategies, the customer has become concerned with various marketing practices each company is employing. The factors that cause switches start shifting from what the customer views as strategies to what the customer perceives as marketing practice, hence the effect of customer perception to the marketing practices. The main objective of this study is to investigate whether there are differences customers perceive between the marketing practices employed by Chevron and other competitors i.e. Shell, Total and Kobil that may be affecting the market share. Data was collected using structured questionnaires from both Chevron and competitors customers. It emerged that competitors were generally perceived as stronger than chevron in implementing most of the marketing practices like having full range oflubricants, changing prices infrequently, having departmental collaboration, fast order to delivery process, having a loyalty program, customer feedback tracking system and flexible policies. From the research it was clear that Chevron needs to change and adjust most of its marketing practices as they may be causing a reduction of its market share. Marketing practices with statistically significant difference were found like full range of products, dual brand, excellent after sales service, relaxed credit policy, easy account opening process. Major recommendations were for Chevron to fight counterfeits, enhance internal collaboration, reduce frequency of price changes, relax business processes and introduce some CRM programs.