CRM in Entertainment Services: A Comparative Study Between
Inox and Adlabs


By

Jitendra Kumar Sharma
Lecturer
Prestige Institute of Management & Research
Indore

Dr. Dharmendra Mehta
Reader
Department of Management
JNIBM, Vikram University
Ujjain
 


ABSTRACT:

The story of single-screen theaters has reached its sad end in India. Multi-screen theaters have opened new vistas for the entertainment industry. After the entry of corporate titans like Reliance, the scenario of entertainment services has become more professional than ever. These theaters have changed the entire movie-going experience. These theaters are known for marvelous ambience, excellent audio-visual quality, better infrastructure, professionally oriented services, proactivity and allied facilities. After gaining stronghold in metros the multiplex players are now entering into B and C class cities. Cities like Lucknow, Indore, Nasik, Aurangabad, Madurai, Kanpur, Amritsar and Jaipur are the new destinations of multiplex players. Fueled by rising income of people and advancements in technology, these multiplex are spreading red carpets for a wonderful movie-going experience of viewers. The present study is an attempt to determine the factors that constitute the base of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) with respect to two multiplex in Indore city (Inox and Adlabs).
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INTRODUCTION:

The Indian film industry with over 3 billion admissions per year is the largest in the world in terms of number of films produced per year. This industry, which was worth US$ 2.12 billion in 2006, is estimated to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 16 per cent to US$ 4.42 billion by 2011. The opening of film industry for foreign investments together with the granting of industry status to this segment has caused a favourable impact, leading to many global production units entering the country. Recently, Walt Disney has partnered with Yash Raj Films to produce animated movies. The eighth PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) Global Entertainment and Media Outlook has ranked India as the fastest growing market in the world for spends in entertainment and media in the next five years.

In India, there are only 12 screens per million population compared to 117 screens per million in the US and more than 40 screens per million for European countries. Though multiplexes currently constitute 4-5 per cent of the 12,900 screens in India, the industry has a long way to go. This is just the beginning of multiplex revolution. According to a study by FICCI-Arthur Anderson consultants, the entertainment industry is expected to reach Rs. 500 billion by 2008. In India, the single-screen theaters with poor facilities and zero-service oriented staff are on last stage of their life. These are getting converted into multiplexes. India's multiplex bandwagon has gone beyond the metros to redefine entertainment in B and C class cities like Indore and Jaipur. These theaters have fully air-conditioned halls with marvelous ambience, plush chairs, excellent audio-visual quality, better infrastructure, professionally-oriented services, proactivity and allied facilities like restaurants, play zone etc. Their aim is to provide world-class entertainment services.

In multiplex segment, PVR is the market leader in India. Besides, there are other major players like: Adlabs, Inox Leisures, Cinemax, Fame etc. These multi-screen theaters have started more facilities for customers like: online ticket booking for movies, attractive sales promotion schemes, home delivery of tickets, SMS booking, toll-free calling services etc. Big multiplexes have tied up with other banks to provide loyalty cards for regular visitors. Adlabs has tied with ABN Amro bank to supply pre-paid cards for loyal visitors. Many theatres have tied up with providers of food and beverage services. Some others are setting up gaming and kid zones to lure customers. The idea is to provide filmgoers wholesome entertainment that will increase footfalls at multiplexes.

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) refers to business strategy aimed at gaining long term competitive advantage by delivering customer value and extracting business value simultaneously (Kellen, 2002). CRM becomes necessary to study the dynamic business environment. Since customer spendings on leisure purpose have increased, the entertainment industry has also responded favourably. The aim of CRM is to gain a win-win equation for all. Factors like: service quality, delivery, responsiveness, reliability, accessibility and empathy together constitute CRM practices. This is considered as the benchmark of success of an enterprise. According to Gamble, CRM is central to the task of making an organization customer-focused. The organizations must start thinking about customers in terms of people with personal interactions and opinions (Jain, 2007). This holds the key for all-round prosperity of organization in terms of market-orientation. The current research work studies the CRM practices in two major multiplex players in Indore city (Inox and Adlabs). The study has wide implications for the industry in specific.

CRM is a multifaceted process, mediated by a set of information technologies that focuses on creating two-way exchange with customers so that organizations have an intimate knowledge of their needs, wants and buying patterns. It is a process used to learn more about customers' needs and behaviors in order to develop stronger relationships with them. It is the philosophy, policy and coordinating strategy connecting different players within an organization for the purpose of coordinating their efforts in creating an overall valuable series of experiences, products and services for the customer.

BRIEF LITERATURE REVIEW:

A brief review of the existing research in this field has been presented. The findings of research are as follows:

Gummerson (1996) tried to explore the extent of application of relationship marketing in service sector. According to his findings, the service users hold good image of the company if it provides effective CRM services. He found that poor relationship marketing caused discontinuation of services by many customers. The same concept applies to Indian customers too. Service industry players need to put thrust on this area to maintain profits on a sustainable basis.

Jain and Dhar (2003) studied the determinants of customer relationship management effectiveness in India. They used in-depth interviews focused on behavioural dimensions of relationships. It was found that customer relationship management emerged as a core business process for maintaining and enhancing the competitive edge in modern business affairs. In the area of services, the issue of customer relationship management holds much importance. Many a times, it is the CRM that becomes the deciding factor while selection of services. Customer loyalty is directly related to the CRM efforts made by the service sector companies.

Sarangi (2007) highlighted the aspect of quality of entertainment service industry in India. The objective was to define the parameters of service quality satisfaction with reference to entertainment services in a metro city. In a survey of 300 people visiting the multi-screen cinema halls and luxury hotels, various dimensions of services were found. Customers in metros and other cities have started watching movies in multiplexes which provide excellent ambience and quality. When asked about the factors causing the visit, the customers gave first preference to comfort and ambience provided in the place. For this aspect, the customers were ready to compromise on cost and distance factor. Besides ambience, promptness in services was another factor leading to satisfaction of customers.

RESEARCH OBJECTIVES:

The multiplex industry is growing at a fast speed. These multiplexes have been adopting CRM practices since their inception. The major objective of this research was to determine the factors that constitute the base of customer relationship management (CRM) with respect to two multiplexes in Indore city (Inox and Adlabs). On the basis of these factors, CRM practices between Adlabs and Inox were compared and overall effectiveness was determined. CRM practices were evaluated on six parameters between the two multiplexes.

METHODOLOGY :

The study was an exploratory meant for the purpose of investigation of factors that constitute the foundation of CRM in entertainment sector. Based on these factors, Adlabs and Inox multiplexes were compared. The research was conducted on 200 movie-goers in Indore city, (100 visitors of Adlabs and 100 of Inox) which included students, businessmen, executives, family etc. With a population of more than 18 lakh, Indore has been considered as the most developed city of Madhya Pradesh. Besides many single-screen theaters, the city has four multi-screen theaters to cater the needs of movie goers: PVR, Adlabs, Inox and Velocity. In near future there will be more than 10 multiplexes in the city.

Tool for data collection and analysis: For primary data collection, a self-administered and non-disguised five-point scale questionnaire containing 21 statements was used. The data was tabulated and analyzed using SPSS 11. Factor analysis and Z test were applied for data analysis.

Hypotheses:

For the research, some hypotheses were formulated and tested for significance to prove the objectives in scientific manner. The tool was Z- test that was applied for the study. 

The stated hypotheses were as follows:

H01 There is no significant difference in the ambience provided by Adlabs and Inox multi-screen theaters.
H02 There is no significant difference in the amenities provided by Adlabs and Inox multi-screen theaters.
H03 There is no significant difference in the speedy services provided by Adlabs and Inox multi-screen theaters.
H04 There is no significant difference in the staff's cooperativeness in Adlabs and Inox multi-screen theaters.
H05 There is no significant difference in the online services provided by Adlabs and Inox multi-screen theaters.
H06 There is no significant difference in the infrastructure of Adlabs and Inox multi-screen theaters in Indore.

The above hypotheses were tested and results were drawn.

RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS:

Factor analysis through SPSS identified six factors that represented the study of CRM in Adlabs and Inox. The six factors are:

Factor 1: Ambience: This factor was constituted of level of comfort in multiplex (factor load of 0.822516), fully air-conditioned hall (factor load of 0.819897), plush and comfortable chairs (factor load of 0.808359), attractive interiors (factor load of 0.602759), high quality of sound and picture (factor load of 0.517616) and the total factor load was 3.571147 with 9.66 percent of variance. These components together constitute the ambience of cinema hall.

Factor 2: Amenities: This factor constituted customer-friendly services (factor load of 0.702236), food joints (factor load of 0.576159), drinking water facilities (factor load of 0.575195), neat and clean toilets (factor load of 0.551601), kid zone (factor load of 0.550619), play zone (factor load of 0.541828) and the total factor load was 2.800448 with 9.37 percent of variance. Multiplex theaters have now tied-up with other service providers for more amenities of customers under one roof.

Factor 3: Speedy Services: This factor constituted speed of ticket booking (factor load of 0.787234), facility for quick location of seats (factor load of 0.708242), speed of services in restaurant (factor load of 0.638972), variety of services (factor load of 0.494141) and the total factor load was 2.628589 with 7.33 percent of variance. One of the factors that make multiplex better than single-screen theaters is the quick response.

Factor 4: Staff's cooperativeness: This factor constituted the friendly behaviour by staff (factor load of 0.811028), their problem solving attitude (factor load of 0.801436) and the total factor load was 1.85414 with 6.49 percent of variance. This factor becomes crucial in determining the superiority of multiplex theaters over single-screen cinema halls. Viewers consider the behaviour of single-screen theater staff as uncooperative and rude.

Factor 5: Online services: This factor constituted the range of online services provided by multiplex (factor load of 0.713804), online ticket booking facilities (factor load of 0.626645), online payment system (factor load of 0.44221) and the total factor load was 1.782659 with 6.41 percent of variance. 

Factor 6: Infrastructure: This factor constituted infrastructural components like building and other facilities with a total factor load of 0.770863 with 4.25 percent of variance. Along with other factors the building, entrance, emergency exit, interiors, parking facilities etc. also influence the viewers.

Results of t-test: On application of t-test, null hypotheses H02, H03, H04, H05, and H06 were accepted and hypothesis H01 was found to be rejected at 0.05 level of significance. It can be concluded that there is no significant difference in amenities, speedy services, staff's cooperativeness, online services and infrastructure facilities provided by Adlabs and Inox. However, differences were observed in ambience. Viewers perceived Adlabs multiplex as superior in terms of ambience as compared with Inox, though the difference between them was not wide.

CONCLUSION AND IMPLICATIONS:

The study has determined six factors: ambience, amenities, speedy services, staff's cooperativeness, online services and infrastructure. The results of this study can be of use for multiplex as well as single-screen theaters. It can also be perceived as a comparison of multiplex theaters vis--vis single-screen theaters. The study can be made on a large sample and comparison across various cities can be done. However, this study is limited to Indore city only. The results may different in other cities where no. of theaters of Adlabs and Inox is high. The study has wide implications for the industry in specific. Much work can be done towards strengthening CRM practices in multiplex segment in India.

REFERENCE:

1) Gummerson, E., (1996), "Making Relationship Marketing Operations", International Journal of Service Industry Management, Vol. 5 (5). 

2) Jain, R.; Jain, S. and Dhar, Upinder, (2003), " Measuring Customer Relationship Management", Journal of Services Research, Vol. 2 (2), October-March.

3) Sarangi, S. K., (2007), "Quality in Service Sector: An Indian Perspective", Tecnia Journal of Management Studies, Vol. 2 (2), October. 

4) Brown and  Stanley, (1999), "Customer Relationship Management: Linking People, Process and Technology", New York, Wiley.

5) Ward, Tony and Dagger, T. S., (2007), "The Complexity of Relationship Marketing for Service Customers", Journal of Services Marketing, Vol. 21 (4).

6) Varki, S. and Wong, S. (2003), "Consumer Involvement in Relationship Marketing of Services", Journal of Service Research, Vol. 3 (6), August.

7) Parasuraman, A.; Berry, L. L. and Zeithaml V., (1994), "Alternative Scales of Measuring Service Quality: A Comparative Assessment Based on Diagnostic Criteria", Journal of Marketing, Vol. 70 (3).

8) Craven, D. W. and Piercy, N. F., (1994), "Relationship Marketing and Collaborative Networks in Service Organizations", International Journal of Service Industry Management, Vol. 5 (5).

9) Zeithaml V.; Berry, L. L. and Parasuraman, A., (1988), "Communication and Control Process in the Delivery of Services", Journal of Marketing, Vol. 50. 

10)  Zikmund, W., (2002), Business Research Methods, Thomson-South Western Publishers, USA.

11) Gronroos, C., (1984), "A Service Quality Model and its Marketing Implications", European Journal of Marketing, Vol. 18 (4).

12) www.ibef.org/industry/Entertainment.aspx 
 


Jitendra Kumar Sharma
Lecturer
Prestige Institute of Management & Research
Indore

Dr. Dharmendra Mehta
Reader
Department of Management
JNIBM, Vikram University
Ujjain
 

Source: E-mail June 7, 2008

           

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