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Influence of Digital Marketing in Enhancing Customer

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Acknowledgement

I would like to thank my tutor and family members for supporting me in completing the present research. My professor has supported me a lot in the different areas such as deciding the topic, conducting the research, providing knowledge regarding selection of methodological tools etc.

I would like to thank my classmates and friends also who have supported me in entire research as without their support it would not be possible for me to complete the study. With the support of different individuals I was highly motivated in the research and I actively participated in the every activity.

Abstract

In the modern era, practices of digital marketing have become important for businesses because they have been able to increase the overall sales and revenues. The competition in the retail industry has become very intense and now brands in the industry are required to make sure that high quality of experience and satisfaction is provided to the customers.

The primary reason behind carrying out the present research is to determine the impact of digital marketing on customer experience in case of Penney’s. In this study inductive approach to research has been selected. The data has been gathered from 50 customers and questionnaire has been used as a tool for collecting the response. On the other side of this, interview of three managers working in Penny’s has also been used to attain the desired outcomes.

With the adoption of digital marketing practices it has become possible for every firm to share every type of crucial information with the target market whether it may be related with price, quality of the product, or any other unique attribute that is present in the product range.

From the analysis it can be concluded that the practice of digital marketing contributes a lot in enhancing customer experience. Further, the company like Penney’s rely on digital platforms for conducting its marketing practice. It is recommended to the managers of Penneys to consider different awareness activities through which it is possible to increase awareness regarding Pinterest page.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction. 1

1.1 Background. 1

1.2 Rationale of the study. 2

1.3 Aim and objectives. 2

Research questions. 2

1.4 Analysis and framework. 3

1.5 Structure of the dissertation. 3

Chapter 2: Literature review.. 5

2.1 Introduction. 5

2.2. Overview of Digital Marketing. 5

2.3The importance of providing satisfactory customer experience. 9

2.4. Issues in improving customer experience. 11

2.5Different tools and techniques of digital marketing. 11

Chapter 3- Research Methodology. 16

3.1 Introduction. 16

3.2 Research approach. 16

3.3 Research philosophy. 16

3.4 Research design. 17

3.5 Data Collection. 17

3.6 Sampling. 18

3.7 Data analysis. 18

3.8 Ethical consideration. 18

Conclusion. 19

Chapter 4: Data analysis. 20

4.1 Introduction. 20

4.2 Customer response analysis. 20

Conclusion. 36

Chapter 5: Analysis and discussion. 37

Chapter 6: Conclusion and recommendation. 41

6.1 Discussion of findings. 41

6.2 Recommendation. 42

References. 44

Appendix. 49

Questionnaire. 49

Interview analysis. 51

 LIST OF FIGURES

Figure 1 Usage of digital marketing platforms. 6

Figure 2: Share of global advertising spend. 8

Figure 3: Customer experience framework. 17

Figure 4: Age Chart 24

Figure 5: Gender 25

LIST OF TABLES

Table 1: Customers age. 24

Table 2: Gender information. 25

Table 3: Importance of degree of customer satisfaction and experience. 26

Table 4: Influence of marketing on buying behaviour 27

Table 5: Social media platforms utilized by Penneys. 28

Table 6: Marketing mix factor place. 29

Table 7: Comparison of traditional and social media advertising. 30

Table 8: Treating every customer results in enhancing customer satisfaction. 31

Table 9: Important factors regarding purchase of products. 32

Table 10: Role of promotional and marketing strategies. 33

Table 11: Response regarding enhancing degree of customer experience is tough. 34

Table 12: Penney's digital marketing helps in getting information. 36

Table 13: Importance of doubt, query in influencing customer experience. 37

Table 14: Improvement is needed in Penneys marketing practices. 38

Table 15: Digital marketing is more useful 39

Chapter 1: Introduction

1.1 Background

Over the past few years, the practices of digital marketing have become very popular among companies because they are providing several benefits and advantages to the businesses. In simpler terms, digital marketing has been defined as the process in which different types of digital technologies are taken into consideration by companies to market their offerings. The businesses operating at small, medium and large scale are using different forms andchannelsof digital marketing with various purposes (Mogos, 2015). Social media, websites, emails, digital ads and banners are considered as some common channels of digital marketing which are used by companies.

In the modern era, practices of digital marketing have become important for businesses because they have been able to increase the overall sales and revenues. In addition to this, improvement in areas such as brand awareness is also a major reason due to which organizations are now emphasizing a lot on adopting the practices of digital marketing. Nowadays, many companies in the market have transformed their marketing strategy from traditional to modern one because they are cost effective and at the same time they are able to provide adequate results. On the other side of this, it can be argued that the reason behind growing popularity of modern and digital marketing practices is that they are providing competitive advantage to businesses (Payne et al. 2017).

The competition in the retail industry has become very intense and now brands in the industry are required to make sure that high quality of experience and satisfaction is provided to the customers. In simpler terms, customer experience is defined as the overall perception of the customers in context of the experience which they had with a particular brand or business. Organizations are now focusing a lot on developing strategies and employing plans to enhance the overall experience delivered to the customers. Strategies such as strong focus on digital marketing practices are also carried out by businesses with an objective to deliver greater degree of experience to the customers (Ramanathan et al 2017). Digital marketing channels such as social media are taken into consideration by the brands with an objective to understand the changing customer demands and develop services and products according to the same. In addition to this, strategies such as delivering frequent emails and messages to the customers with regards to new offers and special discounts are also employed by organizations to deliver greater degree of experience to the customers.

1.2 Rationale of the study

The primary reason behind carrying out the present research is to determine the impact of digital marketing on customer experience. Here, different factors associated with customer satisfaction and digital marketing have been taken into consideration by the researcher to gain detailed insight into the chosen topic. The growing importance and usage of digital marketing practices and strategies can be termed as another major reason due to which the present study has been selected. Here, information will be gathered from various and useful sources to understand the reasons because of which companies are getting more and more inclined towards the use of digital marketing practices.

On the other side of this, the growing need and importance of delivering high quality of experience and satisfaction to the customer is also a critical reason because of which the current study has been selected (Rowley, 2016). The study focused on understanding the link between the practices of digital marketing and the ways in which it is affecting the degree or level of customer satisfaction. The use of different marketing and digital channels is carried out by businesses with an objective to deliver greater degree of experience to the customers. Lack of satisfactory experience can result in creating several issues and obstacles in the success and growth of a business enterprise. Organizations have now also increased their interaction with the customers so that better and satisfactory experience can be delivered to the people in the market.

1.3 Aim and objectives

Aim

To determine theinfluence of digital marketing in enhancing customer experience: A study on Penney’s 

Objectives
  • To understand the role of digital marketing in the modern era
  • To assess the ways adopted by marketers for providing positive customer experience
  • To identify link between digital marketing practices and customer experience
  • To recommend ways through which Penney’s can improve its customer experience
Research questions
  • How significant is the role of digital marketing in the modern era?
  • What are the digital marketing platforms utilized by Penney’s?
  • How digital marketing supports in improving customer experience? 

1.4 Analysis and framework

Analysis and methodological tools is also considered as important aspect of a dissertation as it outlines different methods and tools employed for attain the objectives and addressing the research questions. In this research inductive approach to research has been selected as it will help in determining the key and major factors which are affective or influencing the overall experience level of customers. The use of this approach has played a vital role identifying and determining the relationship towards the development of various theories and models. The aim of current research is to determine the influence of digital marketing practices on customer experience within Penney’s and here interpretivism philosophy of research has been mainly used. Furthermore, the selection of this philosophy hasprovided the researcher with an opportunity to interpret the views and opinions of other scholars and authors in context of the topic selected for investigation.

Apart from this, the present study has also focused on collecting evidence from the primary sources and here customers and managers of Penney’s has been selected as samples. The data has been gathered from 50 customers and questionnaire has been used as a tool for collecting the response. On the other side of this, interview of three managers working in Penney’s has been also used to attain the desired outcomes. The researcher has focused on using descriptive design of research for the present investigation and it has assisted in attaining the reliable and more accurate information with regards to the impact of digital marketing practices on customer experience within Penney’s.

1.5 Structure of the dissertation

The structure of dissertation has been provided below as:

Chapter 1: Introduction

It is the first chapter in a dissertation and the chapter is important because it provides overview of the entire topic selected. The aim and objectives along with research questions are highlighted in this section and it helps the readers and other authors in gaining adequate information and knowledge about the research area selected. The rationale of conducting the study and analysis and framework are some other areas which are covered in the first chapter of introduction.

Chapter 2: Literature review

It is another important section of the research and it outlines the views and opinions of other researchers and scholars on the topic selected for investigation. The readers are able to gain detailed and critical understanding about the chosen topic with the help of this section. Here, different themes are developed and critically analysed to gather adequate and reliable information in context of meeting the aim and objectives of the study.

Chapter 3: Research Methodology

The third chapter of dissertation includes the tools and major techniques which are used by researchers for the purpose of collecting, storing and analysing the information. Research approach, philosophy, data collection, analysis and design are some major sections which are covered in this chapter of research methodology.

Chapter 4: Data analysis

It is considered as another critical chapter of a research where different techniques are used by the researchers in evaluating the evidence and data which has been gathered from various or multiple sources. Here, charts, tables and different themes are used to evaluate the information and obtain suitable and reliable findings.

Chapter 5: Conclusion and recommendations

It is the last chapter of a dissertation in which key points of the entire research are summarized and recommendations for the future improvements are made.   

Chapter 2: Literature review

2.1 Introduction

In the modern era the role of digital marketing has increased at a faster pace where large number of businesses has started to adopt digital platforms for conducting the overall operations in the market (Bilgihan, 2016). It can be stated that the practice of digital marketing contributes a lot in attracting large number of customers in the market and in turn it brings favourable results for the business in the every possible manner that is very crucial. The present analysis is based on conducting literature review on the topic selected influence of digital marketing in enhancing customer experience level. Te study provides overview of the digital marketing platforms that are utilized by the companies for managing customer experience level. Furthermore, literature review with regards to digital marketing and different elements associated with the same has also been outlined in the current study. Data from different secondary sources have been collected and used to analyse different aspects associated with digital marketing.

2.2. Overview of Digital Marketing

The concept of digital marketing is considered as the practice of promoting goods and services with the help of different digital platforms (Barreda et al. 2015). It is most commonly regarded as internet marketing, online marketing or web marketing also. Digital marketing mainly do not involve the traditional methods of advertising such as print, billboard, radio, TV etc (socPub, 2018).

In the era of digitalization many business firmshave started to adopt different advanced practices for conducting marketing related operations. The rationale behind this is that advanced tools and techniques directly contribute in enhancing the effectiveness of the operations and activities. For example, digital marketing tool such as Facebook provide businesses with an opportunity to enhance the effectiveness of operations by interacting with customers and understanding their changing needs and demands.

As per view of Ramanathan, et al. (2017) nowadays, there are different types of tools and techniques of digital marketing which can be used by companies. It has been found that Facebook is one of the most commonly adopted platforms where majority of the marketers prefer to take advantage of this platform for conducting the marketing related practices efficiently (Ramanathan, et al. 2017). Apart from this, YouTube is also another main platform that is adopted by the firms for carrying out marketing practices and the platform is main because it is used by most of the people. The use of this platform is helping many companies in creating effective awareness of its products and services. The main advantage of utilizing different types of platforms for marketing purposes is that these platforms assist in building strong relationship with target market by providing opportunity to communicate and interact with the same.

According to McLean and Wilson, (2016) the main digital platforms such as Whatsapp, Instagram, WeChat are highly effective and the main benefit is that businesses can easily share crucial information regarding products and services with the target market. It is required by companies to make sure that more accurate and reliable information with regards to products and services offered.

Figure 1 Usage of digital marketing platforms

Source: Chaffey, 2019

The above chart represents the use of different platforms for the marketing purpose. It has been found that demand for Facebook is quite high from the marketer’s point of view and in turn they prefer to adopt this platform for sharing information and ideas (Devrix, 2019). Thereason behind high demand of Facebook is that it the social media platform with highest number of users and therefore, provides huge data to companies in terms of potential customers. The selection of inadequate or wrong platform of marketing can also create issues for businesses in terms of attaining the desired and expected marketing objectives. For example, businesses found issues and challenges in context of determining what type of marketing strategies and tools should be employed to attain the desired goals and objectives associated with sales and profitability. Furthermore, the selection of right and the most suitable marketing platforms and tools is very important for the success of marketing plans and strategies.

As per view of Boateng and Narteh (2016) the overall share of global advertising spend by media is high in terms of digital platforms. Further, it has been found that preferences of digital platforms are increasing at a good pace in the modern era where companies are finding use of digital platforms to be highly convenient. For example, the below mentioned figure indicates that more than 38% of the total global advertisement spending was invested on digital channels and platforms. Furthermore, from the point view of influencing purchase decision of the target market digital media is very important and companies are using platforms such as Facebook, twitter, LinkedIn, Twitter etc to attract its target market in the best possible manner and in turn it provides wide range of benefits also.

Figure 2: Share of global advertising spend

Source: SocialMedia Today, 2018

The above chart represents the actual share of the different media from the perspective of advertising from the year 2016 to 2018. It has been found that digital media is on the highest demand where platforms such as Facebook, twitter, LinkedIn etc are highly effective in terms of providing high experience to the target market. Businesses which do not focus on utilizing digital platforms for marketing purpose then in such case it can lead to failure in the market. As per view of Blasco-Arcas, et al. (2016) television is also one of the most suitable media that is being utilized for the marketing purpose.

Advertisement on televisions is the strategy which is used by companies with an objective to make the customers or people target market aware about products, their features and new offers. In the past when no such digital platforms were present in the market then in such case companies have to face large amount of difficulties in conducting the marketing practices (Blasco-Arcas, et al. 2016). With the adoption of traditional marketing practices it is very difficult for the firm to enhance the customer satisfaction level and in turn providing them remarkable experience becomes very difficult also.

As per view of Bilgihan and Bujisic (2015) some additional channels of marketing are also present through which it becomes quite easy for the firms to share information and ideas in a proper manner. In the modern era email marketing is mainly adopted for the marketing purpose. Further, the total number of email users has increased at present and this is the main reason due to which email marketing is mainly preferred. The actual numbers of email users have reached close to 3.5 billion and majority of the firms operating in the market are utilizing the concept of email marketing so as to conduct the marketing practices in a positive manner (Businesswire, 2019).

The main effectiveness of the email marketing is that it provides remarkable experience to the target market and at the same time they can easily obtain right kind of information that is linked with products and services. However, Bilgihan and Bujisic, (2015) have argued that the main and most important problem associated with email marketing is that most of the emails goes to the spam or junk box of people in the target market and therefore, this digital marketing practice is not able to attain the desired outcomes. Paying attention to technicalities and using a recognizable name of sender are some effective ways through which companies can reduce the degree of their spam or junk mails.

As per view of Elsharnouby and Mahrous (2015) companies that are focusing more on the digital transformation are able to indulge into the practice of the highly engaged customers in the market (Elsharnouby and Mahrous, 2015). Further, it is a well-known fact that engaging customers in the business practices is a very difficult task in case of every firm and in this case digital marketing practices assists a lot in better customer engagement and in turn it brings favourable results also. It has been witnessed that highly engaged customers purchase 90% more frequently and they prefer to spend 60% more purchase (Lund, 2019).

2.3The importance of providing satisfactory customer experience

In the modern era, the competition among almost every industry has become very intense and now it is no longer easy for businesses to attract new customers and retain the existing ones. To gain competitive advantage over other businesses operating in the market, an organization is required to focus on enhancing the degree of customer experience in the best and every possible manner (Digitalist, 2017).

As per the view of Rowley, (2016) customer experience is also considered as important for business because the concept directly contributes in areas such as customer retention and enhancing their long term loyalty. Companies which are able to delivering high quality and satisfactory customer experience face less challenges and difficulties in context of carrying out smooth and desired flow of all operations and processes.

To sustain in the highly competitive market or industry, it is now the responsibility of every business enterprise to determine and understand the way in which people in the market perceives their brand. According toBatat, (2019) customer experience is now considered as a very important aspect of companies because it influences the overall degree of customer satisfaction to a great extent. Companies are required to emphasize on providing satisfactory experience to the customers with an objective to enhance the degree of loyalty in the long-run. Generations of additional revenues and increase in the base of loyal customers are some other benefits associated with providing effective and adequate experience to customer during and after purchase.

However, Quinton and Simkin, (2017) have argued that providing adequate experience to customers is not an easy task and there are different types of factors  which needs to be taken into account. For example, companies are required to understand the need and expectations of customers to provide satisfactory customer experience and this cannot be termed as easy job to carry out. It can be asserted that with the passage of time, the demand, taste and preferences of customer’s changes quickly and this creates issues and complications for organizations.

As per the view ofDörner and Edelman, (2015) customer experience is vital because it directly contributes to the overall sustainable growth of an organization. In addition to this, companies cannot sustain in the long-run by providing bad or inadequate experience to people in the target market. Customer experience is also significant for businesses because it encourages repeat purchase and enhances the degree of customer loyalty.

Mogos, (2015) has argued that the selection of right and suitable strategies for improving customer experience is difficult and important task for companies. Nowadays, many businesses are using digital platforms not only for marketing their services and products but also with the purpose of enhancing the degree of customer experience to the greatest possible extent. The reviews and feedback from the customer or clients are now encouraged by the businesses over different online channels with an objective to understand the changing needs and deliver satisfactory products, services and experience on the basis of the same. Knowing the customer well is also a very useful strategy which is taken into account by businesses to enhance the experience level of customers.

2.4. Issues in improving customer experience

According to Chaffey and Smith, (2017) in the present scenario, most of the companies have transformed their marketing practices from traditional to digital practices. Furthermore, the customers or clients in the market have also become digital to a great extent and the result of this is that their overall demand with regards to products, services and other related offerings have enhanced to a greater extent. Nowadays, the new age digital clients want personalized and customized services and products each and every time they deal with a company. The primary and most important reason behind this is that nowadays there are different options and alternatives available and this has further created issues and complications for businesses in context of retaining the customers.

However, Kunz et al. (2017) have argued that now companies are required to provide personalized experience to the customers and this is a challenging task. The corporate world and decision making process of consumers has changed to a great extent and today most customers wants businesses to treat them as an individual personality. In addition to this, customer also seeks for delivering satisfactory experience and services to them.

According to Larsson and Viitaoja, (2017) businesses are also required to answer the questions asked by clients or customers in the best possible manner to enhance the degree of customer service experience. However, the issue or challenge here is that every time companies do not have adequate response against their issues and quarries and this result in affecting the degree of customer experience in a negative sense. Factors such as customer services delivered by a business enterprise also have a considerable impact on customer experience and this need to be taken care of by organization. On the contrary to this, it can be argued that delivering fast, effective and satisfactory services is not an easy task for businesses.  

2.5Different tools and techniques of digital marketing

As per the view of Kotler et al. (2016) digital marketing is defined as the process in which different types of electronic platforms or devices along with internet is used by companies with an objective to market their services and products. As per the view of Bowie et al. (2016) with the passage of time, the internet has become more accessible and this has further resulted in increasing the number of people who are going online. In the last five years, the use of internet has increased with 5% among the adults and this can be termed as a very potential growth opportunity for the marketers.

Marketing is defined as the concept in which companies focus on connecting with the target audience in a right manner and at the right time. The process of marketing is also directed towards increasing the awareness of services and products offered by a business in the marketplace. According to Payne et al (2017) marketing has become essential for companies operating at any level because it helps in developing a strong demand among the consumers.

Considering customer experience as one of the main element it has been found that different factors are present that shapes the actual level of the experience. Considering the customer experience framework it has been found that different factors are present that are important from the point view of enhancing the customer experience level. The key factors are requirement, price, availability, convenience, service, quality, fashion, social responsibility and the brand (Reimers, et al. 2016). Further, it has been found that the relevance of each and every factor is quite high.

Organizations are now investing considerable amount of resources, time and efforts in areas such as marketing and promotion. However, Gill and VanBoskirk, (2016) have argued that the selection of right and most suitable marketing techniques and tools is very important to attain the desired goals and objectives.

According to HaoSuan Samuel, et al. (2015) different valid factors are present that contributes a lot in making good customer experience. Along with this, customer experience level is enhanced when their need and requirement is satisfied in the best possible manner and at the same time business performance also improves. For example, customer requires information about the product. If using media the information is easily accessible then it will improve the performance and experience. Mainly it has been found that digital technology contributes a lot in enhancing the level of the customer experience.

The practice of digital marketing has directly link with the level of customer experience. Further, when any firm is efficient enough in providing positive experience to the target market then it leads to better customer engagement also. As per view of Zhang, et al. (2016) the digital marketing platforms such as Facebook, twitter, LinkedIn, email marketing etc when adopted proper manner then the chances of providing positive customer experience to the target market is very high. Moreover, high level of customer experience provides reasons to the customers where they can access the services of the firm in the best possible manner.

Support is also another main factor that is most important in the field of customer experience. Generally different brands operating in the market are providing support to the customers through the digital marketing practices. It allows accessing the detailed working about the services so that accurate working can be promoted. Information about the product can be access by customers, comparison between services can also be done accurately. 

In today’s corporate world, customer experience is also considered as one of the biggest and most potential tool of marketing. The rationale behind this is that offering high quality and satisfactory level of customer experience through marketing practices and strategies directly results in attaining the expected goals and outcomes.

However, Sahu et al. (2018) have argued that the concept of customer experience is more intense and broad in comparison with areas such as offering quick response to the customers and delivering high quality services to the customers. Every department working in an organization is now responsible for contribute efforts and resources in attaining high degree of customer experience.

Individuals sitting at home can easily access information like marketing data through which products are purchased by them. Through the different platforms that are utilized by the marketers information sharing has become easy where Facebook, Instagram, email marketing are supporting a lot to share right information with the users. As per view of Kotler, et al. (2016) in the field of customer experience information matters a lot where it has been found that when right kind of information is shared with the target market regarding product or service then it leads to better customer experience and vice versa.

Generally when marketers are not at all able to share right information on right time with the end users then it mainly brings unfavourable results (Kotler, et al. 2016). Hence, through this it can be stated that the digital platform provides proper convenience to the users by sharing correct information as per their requirement.

However Liu, et al. (2016) argued that sometime customers find the information shared as not at all useful and in this case the experience level becomes quite ineffective or poor. For some companies operating in the market they have to face large number of difficulties in providing proper experience to the target market. Hence, in this case the practice of digital marketing can be easily adopted and with the assistance of such practices customer experience level can be enhanced. Mainly it has been identified when experience level of customers is positive then in such case the brand loyalty level also increases (Reimers, et al. 2016).

For instance, the marketing department is responsible for conducting different types of marketing practices and strategies in context of digitalization. The use of various digital marketing platforms are now providing companies with an opportunity to enhance the degree of customer experience by getting more personalized and customized. For the growth and success of a business enterprise, optimization of customer experience is treated as one of the main and most important opportunity available in front of marketers (Jackson and Ahuja, 2016). It can be stated that the need and significant of customer experience cannot be neglected in any case and therefore, it is the responsibility of every department including marketing to carry out efforts with regards to the same.

Figure 3: Customer experience framework

Source: JaganNemani, 2015

With the adoption of digital marketing practices it has become possible for every firm to share every type of crucial information with the target market whether it may be related with price, quality of the product, or any other unique attribute that is present in the product range.

As per view of Fernandes and Remelhe, (2016) when every type of important information is shared with the customers through the various platforms then also the customer experience level enhances. Along with this, it has been found that need and actual expectations of the every individual differs from each other and marketers have to ensure that every practice carried out by them meets with the expectations of the target market. Sometime the content or the information shared with the help of digital marketing is not accurate and in this case marketers have to face large amount of difficulties in providing positive experience to the target market in a proper manner (Fernandes and Remelhe, 2016).

According to Barreda, et al. (2015) the digital marketing practices are also representing that the marketers are socially responsible to reflects the product offering of company in order to satisfy their need. With the assistance of digital platform brand can highlight that its practices are socially responsible and in turn it provides large number of benefits to the business in the market. Business organization operating in the market has started a lot to focus on the elements of the digital marketing for sharing better customer experience (Barreda, et al. 2015). The main part is to decide which element is a prior and can be utilized for conducting the business practices in the market.

Sometime it becomes one of the main challenges in front of the businesses where they have to find whether to opt for content creation, mobile marketing, email marketing or any other specific practice can be adopted for digital marketing. In short, it can be stated that the contribution of digital marketing in providing customer experience is direct and at the same time it supports marketers also to share right kind of information with the target market in a proper manner (Kucukemiroglu and Kara, 2015).

According to Elwalda, et al. (2016) the practice of digital marketing directly helps in sharing knowledgeable information with the target market. Further, before purchasing any type of products customers access different areas where they can easily obtain information regarding products or services in the market. Hence, digital marketing is considered to be the most effective platform that supports a lot in providing right information to the target market so that they can purchase the products easily. This is effectiveness of the digital market that supports in providing right experience to the customers also (Elwalda, et al. 2016).

According to Van Belleghem, (2015) the role of digital marketing has become very important in terms of improving the overall experience level of the customers. In the present scenario, people want to get associated with the brands which have the potential to make them happy and satisfied to the greatest possible extent (de Ruyter et al. 2018). The result of this is that companies are now required to use different tools and techniques to provide personalized and satisfactory experience to the customers.

Chapter 3- Research Methodology

3.1 Introduction

This chapter focuses on the selection of different tools and techniques that support the researcher in conducting the proper study. However, the selection of methods focuses on addressing the overall nature of the research or the type of research that needed to be carried out.

3.2 Research approach

One of the key RM techniques is associated with the research approach. It is defined as the procedure that comprises of several steps with the broad assumptions with detailing the methods that are used for collecting, analysing and interpreting the data (Quinlan et al. 2019). There are two different types of research approach, i.e. inductive and deductive approach (Kumar, 2019). For the present dissertation, the selected approach is an inductive approach where aim and objectives have been formulated to explore the topic, i.e. assessing the influence of digital marketing in enhancing the experience of customers. However, with this approach data collection method is adopted to explore the phenomenon and theory is developed. Furthermore, the inductive approach does not entail ignoring the theories with formulating the research questions and objectives. Thus, the selection of this approach intends towards generating the meanings from the collected set of data to determine the relationships towards building the theory.

3.3 Research philosophy

Another technique in research methodology is associated with research philosophy that mainly indicates the belief or norms through which data regarding the topic should be gathered and analysed. There are different research philosophies such as interpretivism, positivism, realism as well as pragmatism that enable the researcher to decide the effective approach that must be adopted by them to accomplish the business objectives and research questions effectively (Quinlan et al. 2019). The researcher has selected interpretivism philosophy for the study as it focuses on interpreting the views and data that have been gathered within the study. The justification of selecting this philosophy is that interpretation of data has been presented through formulating the themes. With the selection of this philosophy, researcher easily interprets the individual belief regarding the usage and influence of digital marketing towards enhancing the experience of customers in the fashion retailer.

3.4 Research design

Research design is another technique of research methodology that focuses on drafting blueprint of the overall study and gives proper direction to the researcher to conduct the study in a proper manner. Thus, it is stated that research design is termed as an effective framework that has been formulated to gain answers to each and every research question (Briggs and Coleman, 2019). There are different forms of research design such as descriptive, causal, experimental, cause and effect etc. that are used by the researcher to conduct the research practices successfully. For the present research, the selected research design is a descriptive design where the researcher solely focuses on conducting in-depth research on the topic with gaining massive information and data. With the implementation of this research design, the researcher should be able to provide insights regarding the overview of using digital marketing in the fashion retailer company (Flick, 2018). Therefore, the selection of descriptive research design in the present study is that it assists in undertaking appropriate planning of the resources and their procurement at the right time. On the other hand, selected research design also focuses on the proper documentation of the different activities at the time of implementation of project work so that researcher may acquire the relevant information accompanying the study.

3.5 Data Collection

Data collection is among one of the most important technique through which relevant information and data are being collected for the study with the help of available sources. Basically there are two sources of data collection that are primary and secondary. The main sources of data that are used for acquiring the primary information is associated with questionnaire, survey etc (Lalić and Pope, 2018). The primary sources of data collection focus on collecting the reliable, accurate and first-hand information on the selected topic that help in overcoming the procrastination and duplication. On the other hand, secondary sources of data collection include obtaining information from the published sources such as reports, articles, newspaper etc. Through comparing both the sources it has been identified that primary source is measured to be more reliable source information as the primary data indicates that they are not being used in any other study. Considering the present study it has been assessed that both primary and secondary sources of data collection has been used (Kapur, 2018). Questionnaire has been used for collecting the primary data from the employees of Penney’s regarding addressing the influences of digital marketing on the experience of customers. On the other hand, literature review has been drafted with the help of using secondary sources such as addressing journal articles where statement of different authors has been taken into the consideration.

3.6 Sampling

In order to accumulate the primary information and data in the research, it is required to select the appropriate sample size. Selecting an appropriate sample size is fruitful for the business as it ensures obtaining of the relevant and required information. Sampling is defined as an effective process of choosing respondents from the population in the universe in order to attain information.  There are different types of sampling techniques that are used for selecting the sample size in the study. The common techniques mainly comprise of simple random, systematic and stratified, convenience as well as purposive sampling (Gregory, 2019). Sample size of 50 customers of Penneys has been selected through random sampling technique. Along with this, interview of 3 managers working in the company has been taken (Refer to Appendix). The sample size has been selected with the implementation of simple random sampling technique. It is one of the major forms of probability sampling where each and every individual in the population gets the chance of being selected into the study. However, the selection of this sampling technique is significant for the study as it overcomes the level of biasness that allows the respondent to deliver relevant information.

3.7 Data analysis

Analysis of data is also regarded as one of the effective technique of research methodology that often engages in undertaking the process of assessing the data with the help of using an analytical as well as reasoning technique. Basically, there are two techniques of analysing the data, i.e. qualitative and quantitative technique. With the help of using the qualitative technique researcher often engage in presenting the data in non-numeric form i.e. through devising a theme and interpreting the acquired data (Basias and Pollalis, 2018). On the other hand, the quantitative technique focuses on using statistical tools and techniques to demonstrate the results of the study. With the help of considering nature, it has been identified that the qualitative technique has been used for analysingthe data where the information obtained through the questionnaire are represented through formulating the themes. Along with this, different charts and diagrams are used for representing the acquired data and expected findings. 

3.8 Ethical consideration

Research ethics is regarded as another significant aspect that needed to be considered by the researcher at the time of carrying out the study. For maintaining the ethics different actions has been taken into consideration such as level of confidentiality has been maintained at the time of acquiring information or data from the respondents (Green, 2019). On the other hand, third party access has also been denied so that it may not lead to undertaking undue advantage by accessing the confidential and private data of the respondents.

Conclusion

Hence from the research methodological chapter it has been found that all the tools have been selected on the basis of the topic selected. Further, with the help of primary and secondary data it is possible to obtain right information that is valuable for the research especially with the help of interview and questionnaire design also. The various areas covered in the chapter such as data  collection, data analysis, research approach, research design etc are very crucial.  

Chapter 4: Data analysis

4.1 Introduction

Data analysis is the most significant chapter in the research as it represents the results obtained from conducting the research. In the present chapter researcher has obtained response of Penney’s customers and at the same time interview of the company managers has been taken. Hence, this data has been represented in the present chapter where results have been represented with the help of charts and tables.

4.2 Customer response analysis

Q1 – Age

Figure 4: Age Chart

Table 1: Customers age

#

Field

Choice Count

1

Below 25 years

38.00%

19

2

25 -30 years

26.00%

13

3

Above 30 years

36.00%

18

     

50

Analysis: Primary data obtained from the customers of Penney’s has supported in knowing their respective age. 19 out of 50 customers lie under theage of below 25 years, 13 lies under 25-30 years and 18 above 30 years. This information is indicating that customers of Penney’s with different age group have participated in the research and they have provided their valuable information also.

Q2 – Gender

Figure 5: Gender

Table 2: Gender information

1

Male

46.00%

23

2

Female

54.00%

27

     

50

Analysis: Data obtained has supported in knowing that 27 out of 50 individuals are female and 23 are male. This information is indicating that more female customers of Penney’s have participated in the research in comparison with male and they have provided their valuable data also.

Q3 - Do you think that enhancing the degree of customer satisfaction and experience is vital for the success and growth of companies?

Table 3: Importance of degree of customer satisfaction and experience

1

Yes

72.00%

36

2

Can’t Say

16.00%

8

3

No

12.00%

6

     

50

Analysis: The primary information obtained has clearly demonstrated that customers perceive their satisfaction and experience as the most important for the growth of the firm. 36 out 50 customers supported this fact and they replied that in case if any particular brand is able to provide remarkable experience to the customers then in such case it becomes quite easy for the organization to grow and it provides long term benefits. 8 customers were unable to provide any response. 6 customers were not at all in favour of the fact and they responded that customer satisfaction and experience is not vital for the business success.

On the other hand, results derived from the secondary research are also same where in the modern erawhen any business enterprise is able to provide remarkable experience to the customers and their satisfaction level is high then in such case it is fruitful for the firm.

Q4 - As per your opinion, digital marketing practices affect your buying behavior to a great extent?

Table 4: Influence of marketing on buying behaviour

1

Strongly Agree

30.00%

15

2

Agree

32.00%

16

3

Neutral

14.00%

7

4

Disagree

16.00%

8

5

Strongly disagree

8.00%

4

     

50

Analysis: From the primary information gathered it has been found that digital marketing practices of Penney’s has affected the buying behaviour of the customers  where 15 out of 50 customers strongly agree with this fact, 16 agree, 7 neutral, 8 disagree and at last 4 strongly disagree.This information is indicating that the presence of effective digital marketing practices have contributed a lot in the success of the firm. Along with this, customers feel that with the effective digital marketing practices Penney’s can easily influence their buying behaviour and at the same time it can provide long term benefits to the firm also.

Apart from this, the results of the secondary research are also same where it has been identified that with the presence of modern digital marketing practices it is possible for the every organization to influence the purchase behaviour of its customers and at the same time it leads to high level of customer attraction also. Therefore, the results of primary and secondary research match with each other.

Q5 - What according to you are the kinds of social platforms utilized by Penney’s for communicating with their target audiences?

Table 5: Social media platforms utilized by Penneys

1

Instagram

44.00%

22

2

Facebook

32.00%

16

3

Pinterest

6.00%

3

4

YouTube

6.00%

3

5

Others

12.00%

6

     

50

Analysis: From the primary information obtained it has been found that for digital marketing various platforms are utilized by Penney’s. Further, 22 customers out of 50 said that Instagram is the main page that is utilized by the firm for marketing purpose. At present the company has 676 followers, 10565 posts on the Instagram page (Instagram, 2019). 16 customers said that Facebook is one of the page that is utilized by the firm.At present 5,905,055 people likes the page of the company (Facebook, 2019). 3 said Pinterest where at present 193,459 followers of the company are present (Pinterest, 2019) and at last 3 said that YouTube is the main channel that is utilized for digital marketing purpose.

6 said that other challenges are utilized for digital marketing such as blogs etc.  This information is indicating that multiple channels are utilized by the firm for digital marketing purpose and this has become one of the main strength of the business in terms of building relationship with the target market. It is supporting a lot to Penney’s to stay ahead of its competitors in the market and at the same time business goals have been accomplished.

Q6 - Do you think the marketing mix factor- location (place) of the store have a direct and a considerable impact on your decision making process?

Table 6: Marketing mix factor place

#

Field

Choice Count

1

Yes

66.00%

33

2

Can’t Say

22.00%

11

3

No

12.00%

6

     

50

Analysis: From the primary information gathered it has been identified that marketing mix factor such as location has direct influence on the decision making process of the consumer. Further, 33 out of 50 customers are in favour of this fact and they replied that location is the most crucial that influences their purchase decision and with the presence of right location they are easily attracted towards the products of the firm. 11 customers were unable to provide any satisfactory response. 6 customers replied that location as the factor is not regarded to be most important that affects the decision making process.

On the other hand, secondary research has also shown the similar results where different authors have said that the marketing mix elements such as product, price, place, promotion etc have influence on the purchase behaviour of the customers (Batat, 2019). The factor such as place influences the decision making of the target market where presence of right location matters a lot. Therefore, in this way it can be stated that the place of the store has impact on the decision making process.            

Q7 - What do you think is more effective- Traditional forms of advertisements (Tv, Radio, Print) or the advertisements made using Social Media (Instagram, Facebook etc.) ?

Table 7: Comparison of traditional and social media advertising

#

Field

Choice Count

1

Social Media

56.00%

28

2

Traditional methods

10.00%

5

3

Both of them

24.00%

12

4

None of the above

10.00%

5

     

50

Analysis: From the primary data obtained it has been found that social media forms of advertising practices are more convenient where 28 out of 50 customers are in favour of this fact. Further, 5 said that traditional methods of advertising are mainly more convenient and it helps a lot in building healthier relationship with the target market. 12 said that both social and traditional forms of advertising practices are effective and company must focus on utilizing both. 5 said that none of these techniques are effective from the advertising point of view.

On the other hand, analysis with the help of secondary research has supported in knowing that digital or social media platforms of advertising are more effective and the main benefit is that it allows in developing healthier relationship with the target market. In case if any firm heavily relies on the social media platforms then it leads to success and at the same time customer engagement becomes quite easy.

Q8 - According to you, is treating every customer individually can result in enhancing the overall degree of customer experience to a great extent? 

Table 8: Treating every customer results in enhancing customer satisfaction

1

Strongly Agree

36.00%

18

2

Agree

34.00%

17

3

Neutral

20.00%

10

4

Disagree

4.00%

2

5

Strongly disagree

6.00%

3

     

50

Analysis: From the primary information obtained it has been found that treating every customer equally can assist in enhancing their experience level up to great extent where 18 out of 50 customers are in favour of this fact. 17 agree, 10 are neutral, 2 disagree and 3 strongly disagree. Customers responded that is necessary for the company to treat every individual equally as through this it is possible to enhance their satisfaction level.

On the other hand, with the assistance of secondary research it has been found that when customers are treated by the firm as per their expectations then in such case it becomes easy for the firm to enhance the degree of satisfaction level and it provides long term benefits to the company also (Boatengand Narteh, 2016). Therefore, it is quite necessary for the firm to treat every customer with proper respect and equally so as to improve the satisfaction level. Therefore, the results of primary and secondary research are same.

 Q9 - In your view which of the following factors is important when you make your decisions regarding purchase of products or services?

Table 9: Important factors regarding purchase of products

#

Field

Choice Count

1

Familiarity with the brand

22.00%

11

2

Price

28.00%

14

3

Customer services

26.00%

13

4

Convenience

24.00%

12

     

50

Analysis: Primary information obtained has supported in knowing that various factors are considered at the time of purchasing products and services. 11 out of 50 customers said that familiarity with the brand is the key factor and in the case if the customer is familiar then decision regarding purchase can be taken easily. 14 customers said that price is another main factor that is considered where customers ensure whether right prices of products and services have been set or not. 13 customers said that customer service is the most crucial factor and 12 said convenience is very important.

Further, with the assistance of secondary analysis it has been found that different crucial factors are present that are considered by the customers while taking purchase decision. Such factors are familiarity with the brand, price of the products, convenience provided by the brand etc (Batat, 2019). Hence, these factors are most important in order to influence the purchase behaviour of the target market.

Q10 - Does the promotional and marketing strategies employed by Penney’s plays a significant role in influencing your experience and buying behaviour?

Table 10: Role of promotional and marketing strategies

1

Yes

68.00%

34

2

Can’t Say

12.00%

6

3

No

20.00%

10

     

50

Analysis: From the primary information obtained it has been found that promotional and marketing strategies adopted by Penney’s has played significant role in influencing buying behaviour where 34 out of 50 customers are in favour of this fact. 6 customers were unable to provide any response and 10 customers were not in favour that marketing and promotional practices can play role in influencing buying behaviour. This information is clearly representing that marketing and promotional practices influence the buying behaviour and at the same time it provides experience to the target market.

On the other hand, with the help of secondary research it has been found that marketing and promotional practices of every firm is quite significant in terms of influencing the buying behaviour (Blasco-Arcas, et al. 2016). Further, with the right promotional strategies it is possible to meet with the expectations of the target market and it provides long term benefits to the business also.

Q11 - In your opinion, enhancing the degree of customer experience is a tough and challenging task for the companies like Penney’s?

Table 11: Response regarding enhancing degree of customer experience is tough

#

Field

Choice Count

1

Strongly Agree

24.00%

12

2

Agree

50.00%

25

3

Neutral

14.00%

7

4

Disagree

6.00%

3

5

Strongly disagree

6.00%

3

     

50

Analysis: With the assistance of primary information gathered it has been identified that enhancing the customer satisfaction level is a challenging task for the firm like Penney’s where 12 customers strongly agree with this fact, 25 agree, 7 neutral, 3 disagree and 3 strongly disagree. This information is clearly indicating that customers are aware of the fact that influencing customer experience is not an easy task for the company like Penney’s and this is unfavourable for the firm.

On the other hand, with the assistance of secondary research it has been found that when any brand is unable to enhance the degree of customer experience then in such case it becomes quite difficult to manage the long term performance in the market (Bilgihan, 2016). Maintaining customer experience level is not at an easy task for the firm and this is the main reason due to which every firm focuses on adoption of different practices.

Q12 - The practices of Penny’s digital marketing help you in getting the required information about the brand and its products and services

Table 12: Penney's digital marketing helps in getting information

1

Yes

64.00%

32

2

Can't Say

18.00%

9

3

No

18.00%

9

     

50

Analysis: With the help of primary data it has been found that digital marketing of Penney’s has supported customers in knowing about the products and services along with the brand where 32 out of 50 customers are in favour of this fact. 9 customers were unable to provide any answer and at last 9 customers said that digital marketing of Penney’s has not supported in providing information about the brand along with the products.This information is indicating that the digital marketing practice of Penney’s are effective and it is supporting customers in providing information regarding the products and services along with the brand also.

Further, the secondary research has also shown the same results where the main motive of the digital marketing practice is to provide proper information to the target market so that they can purchase the products and services of the firm (Barreda, et al. 2015). Hence, this is the actual effectiveness of the digital marketing practice.

Q13 - In your opinion resolving the doubts, queries and concerns of customers are also important in influencing the degree of customer experience?

Table 13: Importance of doubt, query in influencing customer experience

1

Yes

76.00%

38

2

Can’t Say

12.00%

6

3

No

12.00%

6

     

50

Analysis: From the primary data obtained it has been found that resolving the doubts, concerns of customers are very important in order to influence the degree of the customer experience where 38 out of 50 customers are in favour of this fact. They replied that when the queries of customers areresolved on timely basis then in such case it provides them remarkable experience. 6 customers were unable to provide any answer and 6 said no.

Hence, this information is indicating that customers consider resolving their doubts and queries inn proper manner as it enhances their experience level. Customers have witnessed that website or online selling application is not present with Penneys like other well established brands but the company makes its profit through up-selling. The company has website where customers can see variety and stock but they are not allowed to shop online.

With the help of secondary research also it has been identified when any company is able to resolve the doubts and the concerns of the customers then in such case it enhances their satisfaction level and at the same time it provides remarkable experience to them (Boateng and Narteh, 2016). Hence, the results of the primary and secondary research are same.

Q14 - Do you think that Penney’s is required to carry out more improvement in its marketing and promotional practices to enhance the overall experience and satisfaction level of customers?

Table 14: Improvement is needed in Penneys marketing practices

1

Yes

62.00%

31

2

Can’t Say

20.00%

10

3

No

18.00%

9

     

50

Analysis: From the primary data obtained it has been found that customers feel that Penney’s is required to develop its marketing and promotional practices so as to provide better experience to the target market. Further, 31 customers said thatat present the marketing practices of Penney’s is not up to the mark and still scope of improvement is present. 10 customers are unable to answer the question and at last 9 customers said that no such changes are required in the marketing and promotional practices. This information is indicating that changes in the marketing practices can support Penney’s to develop better link with its target market.

Q15 - In your opinion the practices of digital marketing are more useful and effective in influencing the buyer’s decisions in comparison with the traditional marketing tools and techniques?

Table 15: Digital marketing is more useful

1

Strongly Agree

36.00%

18

2

Agree

38.00%

19

3

Neutral

14.00%

7

4

Disagree

8.00%

4

5

Strongly Disagree

4.00%

2

     

50

 Analysis: From the primary data obtained it has been found that the digital marketing practices are more effective in comparison with the traditional one where 18 out of 50 customers strongly agree, 19 agree, 7 neutral, 4 disagree and 2 strongly disagree. This information is indicating that preference of customers towards digital technology is quite high in the field of market. In the case when Penney’s utilize digital platforms for marketing purpose then in such case it will be convenient to influence the purchase behaviour of the customers and at the same time it will bring positive growth prospects.

On the other hand, with the help of secondary research it has been found that companies are adopting digital marketing platforms and they do not prefer traditional marketing method as they are not effective. Adoption of digital platforms is increasing as they are highly effective in terms of influencing the buyer decision (Bilgihan and Bujisic, 2015). Hence, with the analysis it is quite clear that the effectiveness of the digital platforms is high in comparison with traditional method and in case if any company relies on digital platforms then it can become easy to stay ahead of its competitors in the market.

Conclusion

Hence from the analysis it can be stated that practice of digital marketing is most crucial and at the same time it can influence the purchase behaviour of the customers. Further, with the response of customers it has been found that Instagram is the main channel that is utilized for sharing information with the target market and through this Penneys is able to provide remarkable experience to the customers. Along with this, interview of manager has supported in knowing that they believe in optimum utilization of digital platforms in comparison with traditional one for marketing purpose.

Chapter 5: Analysis and discussion

On obtaining primary and secondary data it has been found that role of digital marketing is regarded to be most crucial. Further, it has been found that marketers are taking advantage of the digital marketing platforms and through this the business performance is enhanced in the best possible manner. By obtaining data from the customers it has been identified that they are attracted towards the brand like Penneys as the marketing practices are creative and unique that influences their purchase behaviour.

Along with this, on timely basis right information is shared with the customers regarding brand and the products due to which they are easily influenced towards the company. Furthermore, the managerial interview has supported in knowing that digital marketing is very important for the well established brand like Penneys.

Managers replied that company has been able to develop close relationship with its target market through the appropriate use of digital marketing and in the long run basis it has provided favourable results also. Previously Pennneys focused on the use of traditional marketing but in the era of modernization the firm has started to adopt digital marketing practices. In short, this type of marketing practice has become one of the main reason behind the growth and survival of the firm in the market.

Along with this, through the secondary research it has been found that traditional tools do not facilitate two way interactions between companies and clients and these further causes’ issues in context of enhancing the experience level of the people in the target market.

On the other side of this, the digital marketing platforms and tools provide businesses with an opportunity to interact with customers and understand their changing need and demand. Based on the information gathered from the interaction, companies carry out changes in their product and services and this further supports in enhancing the degree of customer experience and satisfaction in the best possible manner. 

For building the relationship with the target market company has identified email marketing as one of the feasible option through which it becomes easy to share right information with the target market and at the same time business performance also enhances through this. Email marketing adoption has grown at a faster pace and the development of smartphones and e-commerce has mainly increased the actual number of users regarding the utilization of the email service.

In short, it has been analysed that without email marketing it is very difficult for the marketers to enhance the overall relationship with the target market and on the long term basis it can lead to decline in the actual performance of the businesses in the market. Here, emails can be delivered to customers in two different formats which are emails to existing customers and then cold call emails can also be delivered to future potential buyers.

Along with this, with the assistance of primary research it has been identified that different digital platforms are utilized by the company like Penneys. The kind of digital platforms involve facebook, Instagra,m, Pinterest etc and they are highly effective in terms of influencing the purchase behavior of the customers.

Along with this, due to presence of high level of competition in the market it has become quite difficult for the firms to attract their target market. Hence, in this way use of digital marketing is mainly preferred by the firms as it builds trust and customers can be easily attracted towards the brand also.

Customers responded that their buying behavior is affected due to the digital marketing practices of the firm. Different platforms whether it may be facebook, twitter, Pinterest, Instagram or any other has its own effectiveness and if they are utilized by the firm in  a proper manner then it becomes quite easy to develop strong bonding with the target market.

Further, with the help of managerial interview it has been found that the digital marketing tools adopted by Penneys have high potential to provide remarkable experience to the customers. However some challenges are linked with the use of digital marketing that has to be considered like difficulty in finding return on investment, monitoring is not possible etc. Managerial response has clearly represented that investing in digital marketing platforms will be fruitful for the business on the long run basis and at the same time it will provide competitive advantage to the company also.

The analysis can be supported with the help of theory where it has been found that decision of the customers is influenced by the digital platforms utilized by the firms and this provides them remarkable customer experience. Considering the model of consumer experience framework several factors are present such as price, brand, quality, service etc that plays most crucial role and they possess the ability to influence the customer behaviour. Before purchasing any product or service these factors are considered by the consumers.

This analysis can be supported with the help of secondary research where in the modern era, information is accessed by the customers through digital platforms such as for marketing purpose Facebook, LinkedIn, email marketing and other platforms are adopted (HaoSuan Samuel, et al. 2015). Moreover, all these platforms are highly effective from the point view of sharing information and ideas with them in the most effective manner. In short technology has mainly changed the entire market scenario where it has become possible for the businesses to reach its target market in a proper manner. Like with the assistance of mobile applications and websites it has become quite easy for the firms to serve their customers in a proper manner.

For example, nowadays mobile applications and e-commerce websites are used by the individuals to buy the products and services offered by organizations. Apart from this, digital platforms such as Facebook and other related social media channels are also used by customers to acquire information about different services and goods (Jayaram et al. 2015). The overall process of comparing the products and brands has become easy and effective because of the introduction of digital channels. Companies are now making aggressive and intense use of various social media platforms to understand the changing customer needs and requirements.

In case if any customer has query regarding any specific product and in this case digital marketing is assisting in solving that query by providing information. Hence, in this case better customer experience can be provided to the users in the every possible manner. When customers are not provided with the proper support then in such case it leads to the development of the right customer experience which is not at all acceptable. For example, marketing activities does not share actual information about the product then it influences the practice.

Considering the marketing practices with the help of digital platforms it has been found that the different digital platforms whether it may be Facebook, LinkedIn or any other provides regular information regarding the services of the firm or any other crucial data that is important at the time of purchasing service or a product. Digital platforms have mainly decreased the actual time period of sharing crucial information and through this better customer experience is provided to the target market.

If customers are not provided with the right experience then in such case they cannot be influenced easily to purchase or try that particular service. So, in this case, the marketers of Penneys believes in sharing right amount of information with the help of digital marketing platforms

Lastly, the role of digital marketing is very crucial in terms of improving customer experience. With the assistance of primary research it has been found that preference of customers is high in case when they receive any sort of information with the help of digital marketing platforms such as facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest etc. The company updates them regarding introduction of new products and services, new kind of attractive offers and other information which is most crucial at the time of purchasing products.

Furthermore, before purchasing any sort of product or service customers prefer to access right information and in this case the role of digital marketing platforms is crucial. Customers perceive that in comparison with traditional media, digital marketing platforms are highly effective and at the same time the information shared with digital platforms provides them better customer experience.

The kind of promotional and marketing practices conducted through platforms such as facebook, Instagram, Pinterest have their own relevance and they also influences the buying behavior. Along with this, the response of managers have supported in knowing that company prefers digital marketing over traditional one and this leads to formation of the better customer experience. The level of customer experience is improved by updating them with the right information regarding products and services. Moreover, the unique attributes of the Penneys brand is also highlighted that leads to high level of customer experience.

The analysis can be supported with the help of secondary research where it has been identified that effective customer experience cannot be built without the presence of right digital marketing practices. The best part is that digital platforms directly supports in influencing the purchase behaviour of the target market and in turn companies or the different marketers can easily focus on attracting large number of customers in the market where operations are being carried out by the firm. Hence, through this it can be stated that digital marketing practices are highly effective for the company in the every possible manner.

In the modern era, a digital transformation in the field of marketing is now driving the customer experience. The transformation is mow forcing many companies to carry out changes in their business models and marketing processes with an objective to deliver satisfactory degree of customer experience. Over the past few years, businesses have witnessed a significant change in buying process and decision making habits of the customers.

The practices of digital marketing impacts customer experience in a direct and positive sense by putting customers on priority. At the time of developing the content and messages for digital marketing, the needs and mind set of customers are considered on a priority basis. Personalization is the key and most important thing which is required to be taken care by companies to enhance the degree of customer experience to the desired extent.

Chapter 6: Conclusion and recommendation

6.1 Discussion of findings

Hence, from the analysis it can be concluded that the practice of digital marketing contributes a lot in enhancing customer experience. Further, the company like Penney’s rely on digital platforms for conducting its marketing practice and this has supported a lot in the success of the firm. Apart from this, the key platforms such as Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook etc have provided good base to the firm so that marketing and promotion of the products and services can be carried out in a proper manner. No doubt, the market trend has changed where traditional marketing practices are not at all considered and in this case companies are moving towards digital marketing.

For conducting the research in a proper manner various objectives have been set and they have been accomplished in the research. The first objective was to understand the role of digital marketing in the modern era where it has been identified that digital marketing platforms are adopted by every firm operating in the market. With the assistance of managerial interview and questionnaire of customers it has been identified that Penney’s has adopted digital platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest etc and through this the company is able to build healthy relationship with its target market.

In short, brand awareness level has increased with the use of digital platform. Managers responded that Penney’s has started to reduce its dependency on the traditional marketing methods and its focus is on digital marketing. Further, the secondary research has also represented that role of digital marketing is quite crucial and by adopting different digital platforms companies are showing how they are different from each other and at the same time unique elements of the products are highlighted.

The second objective was to understand the different tactics adopted by the marketers for providing positive customer experience. With the help of interview and response of customers it has been found that marketers are utilizing the digital marketing tools such as Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest etc for attracting customers towards the brand. The main effectiveness is that the unique attributes of the products are highlighted and it shows what kind of experience particular brand can provide to its target market. Marketers are sharing information on continuous basis with the customers and they are communicating with the target market for enhancing customer base.

Through managerial interview it has been identified that digital platforms are supporting firm in their actual need and requirement and at the same time corrective actions are taken by the firm for satisfying those needs identified. On the other hand, with the help of secondary research it has been found that when marketers makes use of traditional marketing methods then in such case they are unable to reach target market easily. At the same time traditional marketing is perceived to be costly and no such positive return can be obtained through the use of this marketing. Hence, this is the way adopted by the marketers for delivering positive customer experience.

The third objective was to understand the link between digital marketing practices and customer experience. With the help of primary research it has been identified that positive link is present between customer experience and digital marketing. Interview of the Penney’s manager has supported in knowing that with the use of digital marketing the company is able to provide better customer experience. Further, customers perceive its brand in a positive manner and they are satisfied with the product range of the firm also. Moreover, the survey of customers has also supported in knowing that they are easily influenced by the digital marketing practices of the firm.

In case if any particular information is shared with them through digital medium then they are easily attracted towards it. On the other hand, secondary research has contributed in knowing companies are making proper use of the digital marketing platforms and the main benefit is that they are able to provide positive customer experience that matters a lot. With the help of creative practices through Instagram, Pinterest and other channels marketers are communicating with the target market that influences their purchase behaviour. Hence, in this way all the objectives associated with the research have been accomplished. 

6.2 Recommendation

On the basis of analysis some recommendations are present to the managers of the company so that it is possible to improve the marketing practices of the firm. Below are the key recommendations:

  • Firstly the analysis has supported in knowing that Penney’s is on Pinterest but people are not aware about it. This is the main limitation or the hurdle where customers are not at all accessing the information shared by the firm. Lack of awareness regarding the Pinterest page is not at all favourable for the firm. It is suggested to the company to engage into the different activities through which it is possible to aware customers regarding the Pinterest page. More awareness programs can be undertaken and this can surely enhance the customer base of the firm in the market.
  • The second main recommendation is to increase the frequency of the posts on the social media channels. By doing so it will be possible for the firm to attract more customers at global level. On daily basis new posts can be published that can support in communicating with the customers.
  • The third main recommendation is to take customer feedback on the regular interval. It may be possible that some customers may not be satisfied with the digital marketing practices of Penney’s and in this case it is possible for the firm to know the key areas where it is not performing better and at the same time improvement is needed. Therefore, customer survey can be carried out by the firm.
  • It is recommended to the firm to focus on the key factor that affects the consumer behaviour such as price, quality etc and by focusing on them it is possible to attract large number of customers towards the brand.
  • The marketing messages designed must be more informative as through this right information can be easily shared with the target market and at the same time their need can be satisfied easily.

Hence, these are some of the main recommendations that can be considered by Penney’s for developing healthy relationship with its target market.

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