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Updated A.Y. 2021-2022

This Service Marketing course aims at identifying challenges organizations face in creating and delivering high quality services. In order to reach this goal, classes are based on case studies and readings that help the students to better understand concepts and theoretical frameworks. The course is based on the following topics:

  • Introduction to Service Marketing
  • The STP process
  • Market research
  • Consumer behaviour in a services context
  • Managing relationships and building loyalty
  • Applying the 4 Ps of marketing to services
  • Analyzing the additional 3 Ps
  • Designing and managing service processes
  • Crafting the service environment
  • Managing people for service advantages

The course is set in Spring, 3 lectures a week of 2 hours each. The course is delivered in hybrid form (in presence and online through the Microsoft Teams’ platform). On-line attendance is allowed only to students with proved reasons according to last Faculty rules.


Week Day Topic References Lecturer
1 Wed Feb-23 Introduction to Service Marketing and Creating Value in the Service Economy Chapter 1 M. Cristofaro
Thu Feb-24 Understanding Service Customers and in-class assignment Chapter 2 M. Cristofaro
Fri  Feb-25 Developing service products and brands and in-class assignment Chapter 4 M. Cristofaro
2 Wed Mar-02 Distributing services through physical and electronic channels and in-class assignment Chapter 5 M. Cristofaro
Thu Mar-03 Service pricing and revenue management Chapter 6 M. Cristofaro
Fri  Mar-04 Service marketing communications Chapter 7 M. Cristofaro
3 Wed Mar-09 Designing service processes  Chapter 8 M. Cristofaro
Thu Mar-10 Product or service-product? The case of Ludovico Martelli S.p.A. - guest lecture - N. Francalanci, M. Cristofaro
Fri  Mar-11 Blueprint and in-class assignment - M. Cristofaro
4 Wed Mar-16  Crafting the service environment Chapter 10 M. Cristofaro
Thu Mar-17 Servicescape and in-class assignment - M. Cristofaro
Fri  Mar-18 Managing relationships and building loyalty Chapter 12 M. Cristofaro
5 Wed Mar-23 Managing people for service advantage  Chapter 11 A. Grubor, M. Cristofaro
Thu Mar-24 Customer relationship: increasing success in the service industry - guest lecture - P. Giacomelli, M. Cristofaro 
Fri  Mar-25 The Marketing funnel in service firms: the Walt Disney company case - guest lecture - D. Romani, M. Cristofaro
6 Wed Mar-30 Marketing practices in professional football teams: the case of U.S. Catanzaro - guest lecture - L. Noto, S. Maiore, P. Cristiano, M. Cristofaro
Thu Mar-31  Complaint handling and service recovery Chapter 13 M. Cristofaro
Fri  Apr-01 Managing Complaints About Service Quality: Lesson Learned in the Education Sector - guest lecture and Kahoot game Chapter 14 S. Tabuani, M. Cristofaro

LEARNING OUTCOMES: The learning outcome of the course is that of providing students with advanced skills aimed at analyzing the peculiarities of marketing in service firms. Which are the peculiarities of services? Which kind of marketing implications can emerge? How it can be delivered and outstanding service?

KNOWLEDGE AND UNDERSTANDING: The course aims at providing the student with the specific knowledge of services marketing peculiarities, through the transfer of advanced knowledge, both theoretically and empirically, and thanks to the support of ad hoc analytical and operational tools. To this end, ample space within the course is dedicated to the study and discussion of business cases, also thanks to industry experts’ seminars.

APPLYING KNOWLEDGE AND UNDERSTANDING: At the end of the course the student will have acquired detailed knowledge of the fundamental concepts of marketing and their applications to services. The student should be able to apply the acquired knowledge of services peculiarities to marketing. The student's analytical skills are developed and evaluated through the development and class discussion of case studies.

MAKING JUDGEMENTS: Interactive participation to lectures as well as to service marketing professionals’ seminars, will stimulate students’ critical analysis and independent judgment skills. Students will also be encouraged to collect and interpret relevant data through a direct and in-depth involvement in the study of the main issues related to services marketing. Students’ making judgement skills will also be stimulated by specific tasks required during the course, such as the analysis of case studies and team works.

COMMUNICATION SKILLS: Communication skills are developed and evaluated not only through teacher-student interaction, but also through team works, class discussion of business cases, as well as through the exam.

LEARNING SKILLS: At the end of the course the student will have acquired the ability to critically deal with marketing issues related to service firms. 


Learning material for attending students:

Wirtz, J. and Lovelock, C. (2022). Services Marketing, People, Technology, Strategy (9th edition). World Scientific, Hackensack (NJ).

Chapters: 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 11, 12, 13, and 14.


Learning material for not attending students:

(all the book) Wirtz, J. and Lovelock, C. (2022). Services Marketing, People, Technology, Strategy (9th edition). World Scientific, Hackensack (NJ).


  • Leoni, L. (2015), Adding service means adding knowledge: an inductive single-case study, Business Process Management Journal, Vol. 21 No. 3, pp. 610-627.
  • Mari M., Poggesi S. (2013), “Servicescape cues and customer behavior: a systematic literature review and research agenda”, The Service Industries Journal, vol. 33, n. 2, pp. 171-199.
  • Mingione, M., Cristofaro, M., & Mondi, D. (2020), 'If I give you my emotion, what do I get?'Conceptualizing and measuring the co-created emotional value of the brand, Journal of Business Research, Vol. 109, pp. 310-320.
  • Naumov, N. (2019), "The Impact of Robots, Artificial Intelligence, and Service Automation on Service Quality and Service Experience in Hospitality", Ivanov, S. and Webster, C. (Ed.) Robots, Artificial Intelligence, and Service Automation in Travel, Tourism and Hospitality, Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 123-133.