The establishment and management of Chinese hot-pot restaurant chains have over time shadowed the western mode of business administration. Hai Di Lao Hot Pot is an example of a distinctive Restaurant chain established by its own team of management coupled with specialized promotion and marketing tactics. Marketing can be referred to as the action or business of promoting and selling products or services. Being the ground-breaking chain that it is today, Hai Di Lao applied catering management to help it establish a proficient image. Image is an important tool for marketing since it creates an illusion/picture of the restaurant. The objective of this case study is not only to introduce the Hai Di Lao Hotpot administrative approach but also to study the secrets of its success dynamically from a marketing and service promotion perspective, as well as to study its innovative service framework and apply it in our similar hot-pot restaurant venture.
Attention to the quality of service offered can improve customer satisfaction and retention. In addition, human resource management factor can modify the performance of employees by addressing a wide variety of their wants and creating the necessary ethical working environment, thereby increasing their motivation to work. Professionalism is a major factor to consider in Hai Di Lao Hotpot restaurant business especially in the recruitment of employees. In order to offer quality services, employees should be highly trained and qualified. This tactic has been successfully implemented by a hotpot restaurant located in Zhengzhou, Henan province in China, which, as a result, has started to attract online attention with the hashtag ‘Hotpot Restaurant Requires 985 Diploma in Recruiting Waiters’.
The perception that customers have on the quality of service and productis a crucial ideology that has been proved to be efficient in this type of business. According to Cronin & Taylor, a highly perceived quality facilitates a higher customer satisfaction and leads to consumer retention (58). This indicates that most customers prefer quality services and products over quantity. Simply put, the better the quality, the higher the chances the customer will be content with the service/good and eventually come back and purchase more. Preceding studies of marketing have emphasized on the fact that the main competitive advantage of the hotpot restaurant is the enhancement of customer satisfaction and retention (Chen 26). The relativity between perceived quality, customer satisfaction, and customer retention will not only aid develop the model of customer decision making but also provide propositions for the necessary stakeholders to acquire more customers. Moreover, modern ways of online advertising such as the use of social media has greatly contributed to efficient promotion of business brands, products, and services. The use of Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter among other social media platforms can also be applied in the hotspot restaurant business to reach more audiences, thereby increasing the number of customers. This can be achieved by pushing information of the rendered product or service to the targeted consumer demography.
Another factor to consider in marketing is the quality of the physical environment. According to Kotler, physical environment refers to the “atmospherics”, as perceived through the customer’s five senses namely visual, aural, olfactory, tactile, and gustatory (5). The physical environment plays a crucial role in improving the brand image, thereby enhancing the behavior of the customer. This can be attained through using attractive interior design and decoration coupled with background music, hygienic dining areas, and trained employees among others.
Cronin Jr, J. Joseph, and Steven A. Taylor. “Measuring service quality: A reexamination and extension.” Journal of Marketing 56.3 (1992): 55-68.
Kotler, Philip, and Sidney J. Levy. “Broadening the concept of marketing.” Journal of Marketing 33.1 (1969): 10-15.
Chen, Chen, Huawen Shen, and Daisy XF Fan. “Hai Di Lao Hot Pot: From Employee Stimulation to Service Innovation.” Journal of China Tourism Research 11.3 (2015): 337-348.