Cox & Kings Marketing Mix

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Marketing Mix of Cox & Kings analyses the brand/company which covers 4Ps (Product, Price, Place, Promotion) and explains the Cox & Kings marketing strategy. The article elaborates the pricing, advertising & distribution strategies used by the company.

Let us start the Cox & Kings Marketing Mix:

Product:

Cox & Kings has a wide variety of offerings and services which it provides to its customers. Cox & Kings provide travel related services under following categories

• Leisure Travel

• Corporate Travel

• Forex

• VISA Processing

• Travel Insurance

Cox & Kings has recently spun off its foreign exchange business into a separate non-banking financial services company. The new floated company is called Cox & Kings Financial Services. Under Forex services the company provides one stop complete services to students going for abroad studies under its “Students Forex Services” business.

Cox & Kings provide end to end travel services including flight, hotels and car booking, Visa Processing, Insurance, and Passport assistance. Leisure travel include outbound, inbound, and domestic travel as a part of its marketing mix product offerings. Outbound travel generates up to 65% of Cox & Kings’ revenue and it is the market leader in this segment with about 30% market share. Outbound and domestic businesses sell travel packages worldwide destinations and Indian location respectively. Inbound business caters to the destination management services which caters to all ground tour arrangement. Cox & Kings provide value added services for corporate travels such as organising and catering all aspects of Conference, Business Meeting, Event Management, Seminars, Product launches and Incentives.


Image: company website


Price:

Cox & Kings follows the strategy of “Product-Line pricing”. Under this strategy and given the highly competitive environment of tourism industry Cox & Kings provides a competitive pricing for the services offered to different consumer segment. It charges premium for the value-added services from the corporate customers and offers bundled packages for students under its forex business. To hold on to its corporate clients Cox & Kings incentivises using imaginative reward programs like trade fair discounts and customized business travel solutions at an optimized budget. Cox & Kings also offers discounts to leisure travellers such as seasonal discounts and destination based discounts. To target a segment or receive transactional fee from merchants it also gives discount to a certain group of customers like discount for credit/debit card holders and women travellers discount. Thus competitive pricing is the foundation of its marketing mix pricing strategy. Cox & Kings also deploys optional-feature pricing. Under optional feature pricing, it keeps basic travel features like flights and hotel priced competitively, however it charges premium of additional services like individual tours, luxury tours and adventures.


Place:

Cox & Kings provide travel related services to about 250 points at 160+ locations in India through its extensive network of branch sales offices, franchised sales shops, sales agents etc. Cox & Kings provides travel related services to destinations across five continents and more than 50 countries. International locations are bundled in groups of Europe, USA, Far East, Australia & New Zealand, Africa, Islands of Indian Oceans, Middle East, Russia, and South America. The inbound business is expected to grow by 12% in 2016-17 because of the push from government of India to make India a preferred tourist destination. Cox & Kings will be looking to increase its coverage of locations in India and coming up with attractive and imaginative packages for the increasing inbound tourists to India. Outbound tourism is also expected to grow so keeping an eye on this business, Cox & Kings has invested GBP 6.4 million for 49% stake in Malvern Enterprises UK.


Promotion:

Cox & Kings adopt both online and offline medium to market its brand and service offerings. Cox & Kings advertise its commercials on traditional media like TV ads as well as on digital media platforms like YouTube as part of its marketing mix promotion strategy to create a high recall image. Cox & Kings has packaged its service offerings with imaginative names like “Bharat Dekho”, “Duniya Dekho” and “Flexihol” to create instant impression on consumers. The company uses photographs of exotic locations on its web page and other media platforms to attract instant attention of viewers. Cox & Kings photography competition is also one of the ways in which the company tries to compete for the mindshare of consumers. Cox & Kings bundles its product with other partners for the endorsement like partnership with movie franchises which help it in getting endorsement from big movie stars in India.


Since this is a service marketing brand, here are the other three Ps to make it the 7Ps marketing mix of Cox & Kings.


People:

Cox & Kings operates in an industry which has the requirement of high degree of in-person contact with consumer. Hence, people are the key asset of the company and are critical for its business interests. Cox & Kings has more 5000 trained professionals across the globe. A dedicated workforce serves in the different sections of the company, like Alliance and Marketing section, Stores section, Accounts section. The company also runs a 24x7 call centres across the globe. A strong emphasis is given on before and after sales service and so teams of employees must undertake regular comprehensive training program conducted and facilitated by the company. The comprehensive training program is focussed on developing technical and inter personal skills required in travel industry. Cox & Kings has an extensive network of 185 GSAs/PSAs in India who only sell its service offerings through exclusive tie-ups. The company also maintains a network of GSAs/PSAs at various global locations.


Physical Evidence:

Cox & Kings has many branch sales offices located in Mumbai, New Delhi, Hyderabad, Chennai, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Ahmedabad, Kochi, Jaipur, Nagpur, Pune, and Kolkata and 56 franchised shops catering to domestic and inbound travels to India. Cox & Kings has subsidiaries in Australia, UK, UAE, Japan, USA and New Zealand, branch offices in Moscow, Maldives and Tahiti and representative offices in Spain, Italy, Germany, Sweden, France, and South Africa. Cox & Kings has made joint venture agreement with IRCTC in 2008 to provide luxury train travel in India. The packages can be booked online through the company’s portal as well as offline from company’s offices. The online portal provides brochure for every package and travel related services provided by the company. Also, the Cox & Kings online portal is designed to facilitate users to complete their all processes in a single window using a simplified booking system eliminating the need of comparing prices and services from multiple suppliers on multiple windows and using excel sheet for collating and analysing the information.


Process:

Cox & Kings has several diligent processes in place for ease of business. Company values customer as mission critical and thus has deployed “Customer Relationship Management” (CRM) tool at the heart of operations. The system keeps track of customer bookings and feedbacks and provides a user-friendly analysis of customer’s needs and wants. This helps in designing packages to which customers are most likely to respond. The system in Cox & Kings also helps in designing personalised cover letters to improve the odds of business transactions. Cox & Kings’ IT infrastructure provide comprehensive technology solutions and technical support to its franchisees such as easy access virtual office system, disaster recovery system and in-house helpdesk. The database can be accessed 24x7 from any location. Company focusses on maximizing holiday and business travel experience of its customer through a strong global network of ground operators. Cox & Kings operates 24 hours call centres which provide advice, expertise and tools to its franchisees and backup in case of emergency and urgent queries. Hence, this concludes an overview of Cox & Kings marketing mix.


About Cox & Kings:

Cox & Kings is a multi-national travel company from India. Cox & Kings was founded in 1758 by Sir Richard Cox and has a distinction of being one of the most established and oldest travel company in the world. Originally incorporated as one of the agents for British army stationed overseas, it evolved to become a premium travel brand for Indian subcontinent. Cox & Kings is headquartered at Mumbai in India and its annual revenue for the year 2015-16 was INR542 crores. Cox & Kings has operations in 19 countries apart from India through its subsidiaries, branch offices and representative offices. According to World Travel and Tourism Council’s report of 2017, Indian tourism sector is world’s 7th largest in terms of GDP has been growing at an annual rate of 8%. Tourism industry in India is highly fragmented as unorganised sector has 80% market share, Cox & Kings is largest in organised sectors with 13% market share of overall Indian tourism industry.

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