Service marketing by public universities in Kenya: a case of Kenyatta University
Kadikiny, Caroline Awuor
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In the present competitive context, characterized by rapid change and increasingly sophisticated customers, it has become very important that public universities determine service marketing mix which is pertinent to the customer's satisfaction. The current problem for the public universities is to embrace the marketing strategies that will enhance customer satisfaction rather than relying on the traditional 4Ps which are not customer focused. Moreover investigating the effect of the service marketing mix on student enrollment should provide a better understanding of the drivers of customer satisfaction and also help to specify, measure, control and improve customer perceived service quality. Hence, to gain and sustain competitive advantages in the fast changing education sector, it is crucial for public universities to understand in-depth what customers perceive to be the key elements of service quality and what impacts the identified elements have on customers' behavioral intentions. This study attempts to investigate the effect of the service marketing mix on enrollment in module II programs in public universities. The study adopted a conceptual framework from the field of service marketing and incorporates lessons from both the marketing mix and marketing for higher education. The sample survey technique which involves an exploratory analysis of primary data related to the problem was utilized as the methodology for the study. Structured written questionnaires were the main instruments used for the gathering of data from samples. Data was analyzed using descriptive statistics, which entails means, percentages and standard deviation. From the findings, the researcher found that the courses offered at Kenyatta University are highly demanded by the students and they are of high quality and other supporting services like post office, cyber cafe and medical services are well managed and also the university offers extra curricular activities to the students. The lecture halls in the university are adequately spacious and properly lit and ventilated and also the halls of residence are always in good condition. Basic amenities like electricity and water are always available in the university and also the environment around the halls of residence is always conducive. The library assistants in the university library are always of help to the students. The study also found that the university does not involve the students in participation in the decision of menu item and pricing and also the complaints about the services offered at the catering units are not appreciated and well taken and also sometimes the students have complaints about services and personnel at the university, which are not well taken.