The hotel industry has been on an economic rise for the previous decade because of several factors such as better marketing strategies, well trained personnel, excellent communication skills among the industry stakeholders, tailor made packages for various tourists, together with global increase in the rate of tourism.
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The Banyan Holdings limited was a noble idea born out of the need for tourists to relax within an environmentally friendly hotel, customer centered, culture sensitive, together with a green conscious habitat.
The Banyan is a fig tree that epitomizes peace according to ancient mandarin culture because of its evergreen leaves that create a relaxing shade upon which one can soothe his senses. It was out of this that Mr. Ho Kwon Ping and Ms Claire Ching established a single Hotel in Thailand. With proper marketing skills, he built a brand.
The brand has grown to become one of the leading hotels of choice for international tourists visiting Asia together with local tourists longing to experience a romantic, friendly and serene holiday either as individuals or as group. For tourists wishing to stay at a luxurious yet affordable hotel, Banyan Hotels have been the place of choice due to its strong brand name.
The product has now become global with branches in Seychelles and Europe. With tenets based on a green economy, the world is now a global village with interests that assure the world citizenship of businesses that are environmental conscious together with customer friendly. Banyan Hotels have this in their procedures and merchandise.
Ho Kwon Ping established the Banyan entity in 1994. This is with the Banyan Tree as its brand. A gap that existed in the hotel industry triggered its establishment. The target market was clients who needed privacy and intimate accommodation at affordable costs (Wirtz & Lovelock, 2009).
Today, it is ranked as one of the best luxury resort in Asia with 15 resorts and hotels, 35 spas, and 38 retail shops in more than 40 locations in 20 countries, a feat that even the big hotels took years to establish (Wirtz & Lovelock, 2009).
The success of this resort firm is linked to its brand and the extension made to the brand, the swift marketing strategy, communal participation and incorporation of the world marketing programs. This addresses diverse concerns such as
- The factors that contributed to accomplishment
- Evaluation of Banyan Tree’s brand marketing procedures
- Brand and product portfolio
What are the main factors that contributed to Banyan Tree’s success?
The success of Banyan Tree arises from a good plan and presentation in its marketing programs. The marketing programs were both interior and peripheral. The internal marketing programs focused on the need for a friendly communal and monetary working area where external marketing strategies focused on tapping into the affluent class that needed a green conscious environment that was as reasonably priced as other resorts but quite exceptional in their delicate tastes.
Before its establishment, there existed a gap in the hotel industry between the giant chain international hotels like Hilton and other luxury resorts like the Shangri-La. The big difference in the accommodation costs created an invented market. Ho provided affordable individual villas, well-designed romantic escapade for guests, tailor made customer packages as well as a skilled personnel that would influence upon the visitors (Wirtz & Lovelock, 2009).
The choice of the brand name was well tailored by the international advertizing agency. The logo plan of the Banyan Tree and the marketing phrase “Sanctuary for the Senses” promoted the merchandise and procedures of the resort (Kapferer, 1997). Focus was not on luxurious accommodation but on romantic experiences that was valued by its clients. This anchored well with the need for international tourists seeking such services.
The design and delivery of the products and services
Some of the merchandise and procedures offered were unique for example the Banyan Tree Spa that offered aromatic oil for face together with body massage. The services tailored by employees were dynamic and according to the natives’ culture and traditions complying with the brand that focused on relations and closeness.
Dinner could be offered in a Thai boat accompanied by Thai musicians, wedding packages that Buddhists officiated and even wedding ceremonies conducted under water in the corals. These are some of the unique services in a natural setting. The services aimed not only at customer satisfaction but also the business reaped maximum profits from the customers.
Aggressive internal marketing
The locals got employment from the resort from which they earned a living and retained the special heritage. The employees were trained fundamentals to good service delivery with some accorded the “Banyan Tree Experience” to build the brand in them (Kapferer, 1997). Lucrative welfare policies motivated the employees to consistent good performance.
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Incorporation of the local communities and the interest of the public
The villas were developed from indigenous material provided by the locals. The local artisans were engaged in the manufacture of local art and handicrafts. This merchandise encompasses garments, jewellery, clannish art compounded with spa frills like incense candles. The merchandise was availed for sale at the “Banyan Tree Gallery” (Kapferer, 1997). By incorporating the local artisans in the drawing and assembly projects, the locals identified with the brand as a means of earning an income (Kapferer, 1997).
The villas were totally from indigenous material in the remote areas. The merchandise used in the resorts, as toiletries were recyclable. The resort initiated “The Green Imperative Fund” that supported community-based programs like building schools, promoting crafts of the locals and restoring devastated coral reefs (Kapferer, 1997). The fund also set up a marine conservation office to oversee current and potential areas susceptible to degradation.
Can Banyan Tree maintain unique position in the overcrowded resort market?
Most of the resorts are initiated in isolated areas that expose the clients to quiet environment. Its aim of preserving the environment grants it a uniqueness that lacks in most resorts. The luxurious resorts are expensive and sport oriented while Banyan Tree is less expensive and romantic (Kapferer, 1997).
Activities that involve the community help in promoting merchandise and procedures of the resort. Its activities and products are eco friendly. The wastes products are recyclable, indigenous materials used to produce goods sold in the gallery.
The resorts contributed to the local economy by offering employment to the locals as well as benefiting the environment. The guests who visited the resorts voluntarily contributed to the “Green Imperative Fund” (Kapferer, 1997). A feedback on the success of their contributions was often given that motivated them. The experiences that the clients had in these resorts appealed to their senses. The services offered at Banyana Tree satisfied the clients.
Discuss the brand and product portfolio of Banyan Tree, Angsana and the color of Angsana of beach resort and city hotels, spas, galleries and museum shops fit as a family
The main idea of Banyan Tree is the delight in romance when travelling and the wonders present in dissimilar sections in the world. Marketing programs and public relations were the ways through which the firm used to create awareness about its brand. Globally, “Banyan Tree became a member of Small Luxury Hotels” and the foremost hotels in the world (Kapferer, 1997). The target consumers for Banyan Tree were well-off customers.
To achieve this, it decided to use agents who specialized in exclusive luxury holidays. Angsana was introduced after the lavish resorts were stable. This brand was more reasonably priced and fashionable than the Banyan Tree. It ran as a stand-alone spa business in other hotels. The colors of Agsana, a merchandise line of Agsana, were to enter the tourism trade.
A fine way of marketing is positioning. It refers to finding strategic ways of creating awareness about your brand in ways that will place it different from the competitive entities. A sturdy brand means a better image quality for a firm thereby keeping the competitors at bay (Kapferer, 1997).
For effectual administration of a brand, the characteristic aspect of the brand ought to be managed. This refers to the real characteristics like the merchandise, pricing, and wrapping among many others. The elusive aspects refer to procedures that generate emotions about the merchandise or service.
Brand positioning aims at detailed consumers for the merchandise or procedures introduced. Activities involved in the brand must have a fundamental aim. Therefore, it must be exclusive and dissimilar from the competitors. Its sustainability, significance to the market, and appropriateness must be ensured. Firms should also profit from brand positioning. Brand positioning should realize support and financial goals for the entity.
Brand identity plays an essential role in marketing the merchandise and procedures of an entity. It reflects what the audience easily identifies because of the logo, color, and symbols. It creates a clear difference in the mind of the audience from other competitors. It gives a full impression of activities of a firm. Brand equity relates to the value a firm receives from the brand (Kapferer, 1997).
The Banyan Hotels and resort have established an unrivaled niche in Asia in the Hotel trade. Presently, the prime Hotel chains in the globe such as the Hilton fail to rival it in Asia. The founder of the Holding, Mr. Ho Kwon together with the Co-founder Ms. Claire Ching had a lucid and defined vision that has seen them accomplish enormous strides in the trade (Wirtz & Lovelock, 2009).
They typify how a clear vision undergoes successful marketing to reap the benefits of their dream. With a skilled marketing team, Banyan Holdings transformed this grand idea into a brand name, which experiences universal acclamation. This is because it has collected tributes from the UN. A brand is a special feature that is associated with either a merchandise or procedure. If the service is quality, the brand sells, if the product is quality, the brand disposes itself.
Kapferer, J., (1997). Strategic brand management: creating and sustaining brand equity long-term, 2nd Edtn. London, UK: Kogan Page.
Wirtz, J. & Lovelock, C. (2009). Services Marketing in Asia, A case Study. New York, NY: Prentice Hall.