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1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Taylor (1988:3) had it that, much of the industries worldwide still wants to believe in the credo of a famous American writer of the last century called R.W Emerson who said, “If a man makes a better mouse trap than his neighbor, though he build his house in the woods, the world will make a beaten path to his door” he really felt that if the product was good enough, you wouldn’t have to sell it, the public would come to you.
All fine products but all, eventually, lacking the essentials ingredients of top quality service you must tell the world that your product is good enough to satisfy their needs.
Again, Taylor (1988:3) still had it that, the road to bankruptcy court is paved with the good intentions of operational managers un-supported by enough experts marketing personnel.
This is to say that if the operational mayers are not well supported by exports in the field of marketing of service.
Bankruptcies can also occur and they do – in catering places as well. It is, therefore logical that you should not only know how to make the product well, but be competent in how to market it properly.
However, as you will have noticed, between exchanging pleasantries with a guest, and asking him or her to spread a lot of money on your occasionally inadequate product. And all products are occasionally inadequate some way.
If you could get an honest answer, a fair number of caterers would tell you they don’t do the business for pleasure.
In fairness to them, catering is not all that easy, certainly, you can master the techniques, but you’ve got to put a good deal of effort into it. Now, why on earth should you bother to do that? Surely there are only so many hours in a day and it is well known how hard you are working already. If you are a student, you could well feel that others might be better qualified to market their service, by the nature of their personalities, there you are. You could be right, but marketers are made, not born. You see, excellent marketers come from event background, men and women, introverts and extravert, black and white, it makes no difference.
I have never known a stupid individual make a good market though. It takes a reasonable 1a, a capacity to think. Excuses for not mastering the techniques of sales promotion in catering services come in different forms.
A lack of time, a rejection of the importance of the subject, more urgent task awaiting your attention. Deep down, though, a lot of people rally are scared of marketing. Horrid Visious go through their mind when they think of the subject. “What will I say? “Suppose he throws me out”, “Suppose I can’t answer is question”? What will I tell my friends in the city that I do for a living? Problems, for a nation of shopkeepers, we seem to have lost our way somewhere.
In fairness again, you can’t be entirely critical of these attitudes. The prospect of living with a difficult client may see about a likely, to the inexperienced. Also while marketing may be respectable, that doesn’t mean that it’s the equivalent of securing a brain surgeon.
In the past, marketing of these kinds of services was left in the hard of sellers to market the service, but, in the recent years, it is believed that every member of the management today really has got to know how to market.
If you don’t, you will go far competitors, these will be less money for refurbishment and salary rises, because there will be smaller profit. Your prospects of promotion will be diminished, and the real church will come if you ever become manager of the outfit. Then you will certainly find out, that, you are judged on your profit – marketing programme. Now, profit can be made in two ways;
(a) Minimizing cost and
(b) Maximizing turnover.
If you don’t know how to maximize turnover, you may be on your bike to success, but only one of the wheels will be going round. If you become the manager of the catering outfit, you may have your own sales personnel to superiors. How can you do that if you haven’t mastered the subject yourself? And if they are not available, how can you take their place? At least, in the past, you might have got away with it because, to all intent and purpose, nobody else sold either.
The public had to judge all catering service products by word of month recommendations, or by making the effort to go and find out for them, what they were like. With no industry salesmen or marketers and practically no advertising, managers would just stand and wait.
Today, it is different: international competition, large marketing budgets from multi – national and local catering outfits like Mr. Biggs.
A good service marketer doesn’t need to worry about armies of competitor: they may be only one of you, but the client you’re trying to persuade to buy, is not going to be seeing six representative of other giant catering services outlets.
According to Reay (1983, P1), every caterer preside over a complex area of operation, she also said that, many factors have to be balanced to ensure that the end product is satisfactory and that the mean production, both human and mechanical, are organized and maintained in the best possible way.
Public feeding is a large and varied activity demanding a wide range of provision. Whenever food is supplied, there is a requirement to offer both food and facilities, which will satisfy the cost time and entertainment requirement of an identified group of customers or people.
Within the contest of large – scale food production, Reay (1983:1) had it that many small and varied outlets will be required to identify needs. Take for instance, a hospital complex may offer a meal choice system for patients, a cafeteria and restaurant and snack outlet for staff, visitors and trade men, and a vended night meal service especially in developed countries like American and UK.
Apart from patients’ services, where lost control and nutritional aspects are of great importance, each result will be concerned with offering a services, both indoor and outdoor, stimulating trade and making profit.
The operation of a large public concern of this kind will be controlled by the same guidelines and constraints as any other public feeding situation where business relies more heavily on casual aid return customers, the catering of value for money and meeting consumer, needs apply, however, the range of where customers are prepared to pay more for meals, a more complex and elaborate menu can be offered.
All catering concern must operate using cost effective systems and planned control procedure.
It is clear that the caterer must have a flexible approach to all aspects of the catering operator. Innovation and revision will help to keep the unit competitors and viable, while taking into account the whole ramped available resources. The people, the product, the premises, and the plant.
Meanwhile, in this contest, catering services can be seen as, the art of bringing food to the people, where they need them and at affordable prices.
According to Reay (1983 PP2), each set of dinner has a particular eating regimentation and each type of operation has its own particular characteristic and demand. Where a large number of people are being supplied by the catering unit with their total regiment of food, (say food), then the caterer has a major responsibility to ensure sound nutrition and variety, within the constraint of cost, production and distribution factors. Where the dinner has free choice (say school), the caterer cannot insist that a balanced meal will be purchased.
The total meal chosen by the dinner will relate to his knowledge and expectation of the food, the cost, the speed of the service and they atmosphere of the eating place. The caterer should be careful choosing location for his catering outlets.
Reay (1983; P2), also had it that “since fashion in eating are constantly changing, the cost conscious caterer will aim to equip the food production unit with the minimum of equipment to cover both present and future demand. Staff have to be similarly versatile, operation to the maximum of their ability, versatile staff, working with adoptable plant and premium, can cope with the many changes developing patterns of customers demand thy bring.
Catering does not start in Nigeria. According to Hayter, A Camera in catering, (1980 PP 62 – 63) catering stated in the United Kingdom (UK) with the formation of national training school of cooking in South Kensinster in 1973; and the formation in 1910 of the school of cooking at the West minister technical institute in Vincent Square. It is in the period since the Second World War, however, that the great strides have been made. A change has become a require feature, with important developments in each decade. Since this, cooking for a public has actually become what people go to school to learn.
Presently, caterers are faced with the need to identify and satisfying the particular demands of one section of the market, this is usually for a caterer who wishes to tailor the good production to give food and quality services to customer’s predictions about markets requirements can be made on the basis of sound information gathering and careful analysis.
This research work aims to provide a basis for planning, marketing and savings control, which will support the following main concern of the caterer.
1) To identify the need of a particular group of clients.
2) To create a situation in which these needs can be satisfied with the greatest suitability, efficiency, cost control and profit making.
3) To show how marketing of catering services are seen carried out in Mr. Biggs. In view of the above, the researcher looks out to know revised of catering organization principles to enquire in greater detail into the many specialist areas, which are to be found within this broad field.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
Catering is in the service industry. The qualities of service rendered by some catering outlets in Enugu metropolis have been attracting criticism from people in all works of life. The private individual that eats out, groups that holds party then and then, school, hospitals, and the general public are very critical of catering service. The complaints range from those of inefficiency, not providing food and quality, food and snacks as the case may be, long delays in attending to customers, early closure and unfriendly attitude of attendants. These have been the problems of the majority of the catering service outlet in Enugu state. Are these criticism justified or are they just a mere rundown of catering industry because they are making profit in an area of economic slump.
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY:
From all that has been said above, it is the objectives of this study to know if;
i) There is efficiency in marketing of catering service with a special reference to Mr. Biggs.
ii) They render food and quality service to their customers.
iii) They waste time in attending to their customers
iv) They are friendly to their customers
v) They promotional activities adopted by Mr. Biggs, leads to customer’s patronage.
vi) The prices of Mr. Biggs services affects its patronage.
vii) And to make recommendation to the findings.
The following hypothesis has been drawn for the purpose of the study and will be tested in chapter four.
H0: The sales persons in Mr. Biggs are not friendly with their customers.
H1: The sales persons in Mr. Biggs are friendly with their customers.
H0: The sales persons in Mr. Biggs are not friendly with the price of Mr. Biggs fast food.
H2: The sales persons in Mr. Biggs are friendly with the price of Mr. Biggs fast food.
H0: Customers patronage of Mr. Biggs services is not as a result of brand name
H3: Customers patronage of Mr. Biggs service is as a result of brand name
1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY:
This study, is very important especially these days that almost everybody, people keep, organize occasion that needs the help of catering organization or outlets, and private individual that keep eating out. This study will be of immense benefit to those that still want to enter into catering business.
This study will also be of great benefit to the government to enable or encourage them five loan to private individual who wishes to go into catering business. By doing so, it will help reduce high rate of unemployment in the country.
1.6 THE SCOPE AND LIMITATION OF THE STUDY:
The scope of this study is very wide if it has to be carried out in all the catering outlet in Enugu state. The scope of this study covers only Mr. Biggs, Okpara Avenue, and the findings many not be valid for the whole catering outlets in Enugu, but by the large, what happens in Mr. Biggs Okpara Avenue can be said to apply to other catering outlets in Enugu state. In the cause of the study, the researcher encounters some limitations which limited the scope of the study;
Staff Reluctance: In most cases the staffs only Mr. Biggs, Okpara Avenue, Enugu often feels reluctance over providing required information required by the researcher. This result in finding information where the structured questionnaires could not point out.
Researcher’s Commitment: The researcher, being of full time student spent most of her time on other academic activities such as test, class work, assignment, examination etc which takes average focus from this study.
Inadequate Materials: Scarcity of material is also another hindrance. The researcher finds it difficult to long hands in several required material which could contribute immensely to the success of this research work.
Financial constraint: Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).
1.7 DEFINITION OF TERMS:
Catering service: the art of bringing food to the people, where they need them at affordable price.
Marketing: This is defined as the process of planning and executing the concepts, pricing, promotion, and distributions of ideas, foods and services to create examples that satisfies individual, or organization and society.
Marketing concept: this is the key to achieve organizational goals which consist of the company being more effective than competitors in creating, delivering, and communicating customer value to its chosen target market.
Service: An activity, benefit or satisfaction that is offered for sale without the ownership of any foods.
1.8 ORGANIZATION OF THE STUDY
This research work is organized in five chapters, for easy understanding, as follows Chapter one is concern with the introduction, which consist of the (overview, of the study), statement of problem, objectives of the study, research question, significance or the study, research methodology, definition of terms and historical background of the study. Chapter two highlight the theoretical framework on which the study is based, thus the review of related literature. Chapter three deals on the research design and methodology adopted in the study. Chapter four concentrate on the data collection and analysis and presentation of finding. Chapter five gives summary, conclusion, and recommendations made of the study.
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