Mystery Shopping Marketing Metrics and Pricing Policy Tania Miranda Rueda, Laura L贸pez Jimenez, Alexis Kosciuszko, Rohit Rebelo.
The following report illustrates a mystery shopping activity that was used as a tool to better understand Marketing Metrics and Pricing Policy. The sector chosen includes Bars and Pubs in the Grenoble area, as there are multiple establishments that specifically target students. In order to ensure a common ground among the selected bars, school proximity was the defining factor for bar inclusion. The group of four students visited a total of five bars and the Christmas Market as a seasonal competitor in a two-week period to evaluate each business based on a specific mystery-shopping guide. Observations and conclusions are detailed as follow. Bars visited were grouped in categories based on location and infrastructure. Under the pure Pub category, we found O’Callaghan’s as well as Shakesbeer. With a neat English/Irish pub design, these places focus on recreating the feeling that people would get when drinking abroad. Located at 1 and 2 Place de Bérulle which is approximately a 20 minute walk from Grenoble École de Management (GEM). At first sight –since we weren’t able to further explore Shakesbeer premises– the only element that differentiates these two pubs is their size. O’Callaghan’s has considerably more ground space than Shakesbeer pub. On the other hand, Barberousse falls under the Night Club category. Beer is not their core business. This doesn’t mean that they don’t offer beer on their drink menu, but their focus is directed towards hard liquor as well as mixed drinks. Moreover, Barberousse holds more popularity among younger crowds due to their selection of music (pop hits of the moment). Barberousse is located at 3 rue Bayard, approximately a 23-minute walk from GEM, is placed within a residential neighborhood and is limited on space. It is hard to hold large crowds and this is emphasized at the entrance by two security guards. As a combination of both pub and night club we found Sun Valley. With large premises, this bar has two different ambiances that welcome all kinds of public. On one hand, the bar has the English pub side of the site, which is usually were sports fans gather to enjoy a large variety of games. On the other hand, on the Nightclub part of this establishment, customers can find pool tables, a dance floor, a smoker’s room and a selection of pop hits music. Located at 10 Course Jean Jaurès, approximately a 10 min walk from GEM, Sun Valley holds a clear advantage. Finally, Planetalis located at 10 Place Robert Schuman (approx. 3 min walk from GEM) had to be placed in a unique category. Planetalis is set up as a “Brasserie” which makes food their core focus. The establishment itself is set up as a restaurant (2 storeys) that welcomes customers –pass lunchtime– for drinks. The size of the site easily allows live music performances that are occasionally arranged as part of evenings’ entertainment.
One of the key influences of customer behavior in defining loyalty is the customer service and value proposition offered by seller. The mystery-shopping guide for bars in
Grenoble took these metrics in consideration. The differences between the bars were easily identifiable, with the exemplary service of Planetalis and Sun Valley resting at one end of the spectrum, earning our loyalty while a deplorable attitude by the bartender at Shakesbeer was enough motivation to decide that we were never going back again. Planetalis permitted us to order pizza from another restaurant at cost, while the owner Patrick has always been part of the group, with a amiable attitude and good interpersonal skills. The same can be said about Sun Valley, where Nikolas and Patrick, the brothers who run the bar always recognize us as returning customers, offering us drinks on the house on occasion and granting us the choice of sports to be showed on one of the barâ€™s 3 projected screens. On the other hand, the bartender at Shakesbeer decided to point out that 3 glasses of beer ordered by 4 people in the bar is not acceptable as it is â€˜not the stationâ€™. The service at Planetalis and Sun Valley is quick while that of Barberouse, Bukanas and Le Marche Noel was rather slow. The former are better equipped to handle larger crowds than the latter. The customer service in itself serves as a strong differentiation and gives each bar a unique opportunity to attract customers for a better experience. The entertainment adds to the value offered by the establishment, as does the general outlook and courteous personality of personnel employed.
Conclusion. Infrastructure is dependent on the type of business therefore establishments cannot be graded with the same criteria. The customer experience plays is a critical metric that every organization must thoroughly evaluate and create a pattern of eternal improvement in order to harness patrons in an age of increasingly fickle customers.