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Friday, 18 February 2011

Supply and demand

One of the biggest complaints I hear about living in Vietnam is customer service. And at the same time, I often hear about the gentle nature of the population and a sense of being eager to please. So you can see how I struggle to reconcile the two.

Perhaps it's simply a symptom of the change that is happening here. We are coming from a time when services and goods had their pick of clientele. But as we swiftly move to a more commoditised marketplace, it is becoming apparent that to survive in this marketplace there will have to be a greater benefit than simply being in existence. It's been wonderful to see the bar raised across the board though as new stores pop up and even the street-side cafes start to update to actual store fronts. Maybe it has just been exposure and training. With more MNC's, returning Vietnamese, growing tourism, the rise in overseas travel, we are seeing exponential increases in opportunities for training and the rise to global standards.

Regardless of the cause, as Vietnam becomes a greater part of the global market, added value beyond just the product or service itself will become vital. There is simply too much supply and choice available for Vietnamese consumers for them to feel compelled to purchase anything less than exactly what they want.

What will be the response? Will we follow the trend of more values based marketing or more experiential marketing? No reason why you won't see both.

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