The paper "Blueprinting and Service Marketing" is an outstanding example of a literature review on marketing. Marketing practices have been around for ages and as per Carratu (1987), they can be traced back to 7000 B. C. But as a concept and as a school of study, its origin is relatively new. Marketing is nothing but a set of activities put together to sell a product profitably using the right mix of product, price, promotion, and place. Till very recently, it had been existing in isolation to the wider business activity and thus businesses were not getting the response they wanted.
Most of the earlier concepts in marketing are focused on profits, exchange, and transactions. Thus, the experts tried to overcome these deficiencies by approaching marketing as resource-based or asset-based. Thus now, marketing is being developed these days with a focus on relationships and customers rather than the previous discussions on transactions. (Kotler 1990; Webster 1992). And this change of focus is redefining the domain of marketing as per Sheth, Gardener, and Garett. (1988) and the marketing is returning back to the pre-industrial time of direct marketing in business-to-business and business-to-consumer markets.
Thus the relationship marketing is increasingly becoming more and more popular with the experts and industry alike. RELATIONSHIP MARKETING Relationship marketing involves the interactions and integration of different stakeholders such as customers, suppliers, and employees of the organization themselves in the organization’ s developmental and marketing activities. (McKenna 1991; Shani and Chalasani 1991). Thus the increased interactions and communications within these groups result in much more closer business relationships between them and enforce cooperation instead of the intense competition and conflict among these different groups.
Morgan and Hunt (1994) thus emphasized that mutual cooperation due to usage of relationship marketing concepts leads to higher value creation and is inherently more useful and profitable to the organization. As per Sheth and Sisodia (1995), relationship marketing helps to enhance marketing productivity by helping organizations operate with efficiency and effectiveness. There are many practices in relationship marketing practices that help organizations achieve effectiveness and these are customer retention or loyalty, efficient consumer response, and the sharing of resources between marketing partners. Thus such marketing practices thrive on close relationships between customer and supplier firms.
(Copulsky and Wolf 1990; Goldberg 1988; Katz 1988). Changes in the business markets, technology and many other environmental and organizational factors have contributed to the popularity of relationship marketing practices. Some of the important ones are presented in this paper.