Indian Railways Marketing Mix (4Ps) Strategy

Published by MBA Skool Team, Last Updated: April 19, 2020

Marketing Mix of Indian Railways analyses the brand/company which covers 4Ps (Product, Price, Place, Promotion) and explains the Indian Railways marketing strategy. As of 2020, there are several marketing strategies like product/service innovation, marketing investment, customer experience etc. which have helped the brand grow.

Marketing strategy helps companies achieve business goals & objectives, and marketing mix (4Ps) is the widely used framework to define the strategies. This article elaborates the product, pricing, advertising & distribution strategies used by Indian Railways.

Let us start the Indian Railways Marketing Mix & Strategy:

Indian Railways Product Strategy:

The product strategy and mix in Indian Railways marketing strategy can be explained as follows:

Indian Railways is a government run organization which runs the rail network in India and connects millions of people. Since Indian Railways is a service industry, the various services offered as a part of its marketing mix product portfolio are:

i. Passenger Services

ii. Freight Services

iii. Mobile Ticketing Services

iv. Parcel Courier Services

v. Catering and tourism Services

vi. Parking Lot Services

vii. Other services like cloakroom, restroom, etc.

The Passenger Services by Indian Railways have various components viz.

a. Station Categories – Suburban Group, Non-Suburban Group and Halt Group.

b. Travel Classes – AC First Class, Anubhuthi (top-end class of Shatabdi Express), AC Two tier, First Class, AC Three Tier, Executive Chair Car, AC Chair Car, Sleeper Class, Second Seater and Unreserved/General.

c. Train Types – Superfast, Express, Passenger, Suburban, Metro, Luxury, Mountain.

The main services offered by Indian Railways is to provide good, safe and clean rail connectivity to passengers from one place to another.


Image: flickr.com/photos/kichus/


Indian Railways Price/Pricing Strategy:

Below is the pricing strategy in Indian Railways marketing strategy:

Indian Railways follows a microeconomic pricing strategy where the distance travelled is same but at different price for different class of consumers. The services that are offered varies as per the class you book – sleeper class or AC class, etc. For Tatkal booking system, extra charges are levied. Concession in fares by Indian Railways are enjoyed by privileged consumers like politicians, railway employees, etc. Freight Services operate on the basis of weight, type, size of the parcel along with other factors like the type of service one opts for. The freight services are divided into three categories – Scale R, Scale P and Scale S that is followed for charging of freight for booking of parcel traffic under different types of parcel services. Overall their price segments are quite affordable and one of the cheapest in the world as they have different price segments that cater to the needs of one and all.


Indian Railways Marketing Strategy comprises of not only its Marketing Mix, but also segmentation, targeting, positoning, competition and analysis like SWOT. Also read Indian Railways SWOT Analysis, STP & Competitors

Indian Railways Place & Distribution Strategy:

Following is the distribution strategy of Indian Railways:

Indian Railways covers almost 115,000 kilometres throughout India and is one of the largest rail networks in the world. They cover every corner in the country, from rural areas to metropolitan cities. Their total track runs over a distance of 65,000+ km on route and 120,000 km on track length. International train services are also available to the neighbouring countries – Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh and Bhutan.

This shows the wide geographic reach of the Indian Railways.


Indian Railways Promotion & Advertising Strategy:

The promotional and advertising strategy in the Indian Railways marketing strategy is as follows:

Indian Railways has never been engaged in aggressive promotional policy as it enjoys a monopoly market. Although recently it has been engaged in campaigns for other reasons like cleanliness, tourism, etc. In 2010, Ogilvy had flagged off the first large-scale corporate campaign for Indian Railways. That was strategically done to showcase the organisation as that connects people, places and hearts for Commonwealth Games. Recently Paper Boat came out with an interesting advertisement that focussed on reminding people about their travel experience with Indian Railways. It also promotes itself through IRCTC which is a subsidiary of its parent company Indian Railways and other websites. IRCTC has a mobile app that is being used for booking and other related services.


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


People:

Indian Railways had not been at a very efficient place in the employee aspect. Factors like after sales service play a predominant role in how the customers frame an opinion about the brand. It has been an over-centralised organisation and the need for certain functions to be delegated has been understood by the higher authorities. Efficient work in this aspect would result in better operations in train and freight services as well as getting more customers. Indian Railways are slowly being more active on most of the social media platforms as per the need of the hour. Customers are encouraged to tweet their complaints and based upon the emergency of the situation, relevant actions would be taken. This has been an efficient way to revolutionise their grievance redressal system. Indian Railways Railways receive complaints on various platforms and to make it more effective they have planned to integrate the feedbacks received from various channels. A unified helpline number has been developed to make the feedback process easier for the customers.


Process:

Indian Railways follow an easy process when it comes to delivering the service to customers. There are multiple platforms via which customers can book tickets and avail the benefits offered. Tatkal system has been introduced specifically for people who travel on a short notice or have been kept on a waitlist. So, the process is quite user friendly as we can access the portal services 24*7. The tracking process and delivery process of freight services are user friendly too.


Physical Evidence:

The presence of Indian Railways has been quite evident as its establishment lies way back in 1853. The reserved tickets and receipts act as physical evidences for all the services offered by the organisation. Hence this concludes the marketing mix of Indian Railways.


About Indian Railways:

Owned by Government of India and operated by Ministry of Railways, Indian Railways is described as the “transport lifeline of the nation”. It is the fourth largest railway network of the world. It was first introduced in 1853 from Bombay to Thane. Indian Railways was organised into regional zones in the year 1951.

This article has been researched & authored by the Content & Research Team. It has been reviewed & published by the MBA Skool Team. The content on MBA Skool has been created for educational & academic purpose only.

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The names and other brand information used in the Marketing Mix section are properties of their respective companies. The companies are not associated with MBA Skool in any way.
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