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Services Marketing

The objective of this course is to prepare students for advanced careers in marketing management by enabling them to understand and ultimately being able to influence consumers' behavior by means of advertising and other marketing communications, while maintaining high ethical standards. In doing so, students will first be introduced to important key concepts and theories of consumer psychology. Next, students will be exposed to the concept of integrated marketing communications as well as the planning, creation, and capturing the effectiveness of advertising campaigns. Upon successful completion of this course, students should be able to:
Course code
Course type
BSc Course
Weekly Hours
FS 2021
Prof. Dr. Tillmann Wagner
Please note that exchange students obtain a higher number of credits in the BSc-program at WHU than listed here. For further information please contact directly the International Relations Office.
Service strategy
  • Firms’ relationship strategies
  • Customers’ psychological mechanisms
  • Roadmap to customer loyalty

Service design

  • People
  • Processes & technology
  • Physical evidence

Service delivery

  • Enforcing service rules
  • Frontline employees
  • Emotional labor
  • Co-consumers & crowding

Service outcomes

  • Objective vs. subjective measures
  • Customer dissatisfaction responses
  • Service failure & recovery
  • GAPS model of service quality
Date Time
Thursday, 11.03.2021 11:30 - 15:15
Tuesday, 06.04.2021 11:30 - 15:15
Friday, 30.04.2021 14:00 - 17:00
The objective of this class lies in enabling students to comprehend and apply key psychological and managerial approaches to create valuable customer-firm relationships by means of effective services. Successful participants of this class should be able to:
  • Outline the psychological principles underlying prosperous customer-firm relationships.
  • Differentiate between the mindsets of firms’ relational versus transactional strategic orientations.
  • Reflect on the central relevance of customer loyalty and its relation to experienced service quality and customer satisfaction.
  • Acknowledge the critical role of frontline employees and the principles of functioning service delivery.
  • Design effective services to nurture loyal customers.
  • Analyze and interpret critical service outcomes.
  • Implement mechanisms to recover successfully from service failures.
Optional background readingZeithaml, Valarie A., Mary Jo Bitner, and Dwayne D. Gremler (2017), Services Marketing: Integrating Customer Focus Across the Firm, 7th ed., New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.
Online lectures, independent study tasks, online consultations
Final written exam (100%)
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