Competitive Analysis Of CRM Strategies Using Analytic Hierarchy Process
Volume: 18 Number: 1 Year: 2018

Thani Jambulingam
Maheshkumar P. Joshi
Ravi Kathuria


In the era of increasing need for customer-centric marketing, the growth of technology such as the Web-based customer relationship management (CRM) has enabled pharmaceutical firms to develop new capabilities to sustain competitive advantage with superior marketing strategies, which include formulating unique, direct relationships with customers. To compete by integrating the online technologies across all aspects of a firm's operations, translates into the need for developing new skills as traditional ways of competing become insufficient. Towards this end, pharmaceutical firms have seized the opportunity to institute relationships with customers (physicians and patients) with the use of the Web. Our research focused on developing a technique that would allow for benchmarking Web-based CRM strategies of firms in any industry. We used the US pharmaceutical industry as a setting to demonstrate how our technique can be used to avoid the typical blind spots of competitor analysis. We used a method called Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) to analyze seven firms, selected by executives from the pharmaceutical industry, to compare their Web-based CRM strategies. Results suggest that three of the seven firms were far ahead in the adoption of the Web related to the CRM. One had more focused efforts in patient relationship where as another had a very high focus on physician relationship. The proposed technique can be utilized for competitive analysis in any industry. Implications and future research directions have been discussed.

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