Aravind Eye Care System: Providing Total Eye Care to the Rural Population
(12 pages of text)
The case deals with poor acceptance of Aravind’s eye care service by the rural population in the South Indian state of Tamil Nadu. One of the factors causing poor acceptance is the lack of awareness among the rural population that many cases of blindness are curable. Fear of surgery and cost are the other major barriers to acceptance by these consumers. Aravind is the largest eye care provider in the world and has pioneered many process innovations that have reduced the cost of eye treatment substantially. The company has a culture that encourages responsive service by a trained and motivated staff. It has experimented with a number of options to educate and provide eye care service to rural consumers. The manager must examine options in the areas of promotion and service delivery to enhance the acceptance of eye care service by rural consumers.
Students learn about the promotion options suitable for rural markets and the relevance of consumer perception of source credibility. The case is useful for understanding the differences in effectiveness of promotion options in rural and urban markets.
The case encourages students to explore innovative ways for service delivery to rural markets. Students will understand that the different options available for service delivery vary in cost and effectiveness. The tasks to be performed by the different entities of each service delivery option are to be identified and examined for their impact on the offering to the consumer.
Students will understand the variation in types of services and the implications for marketing decision making. Eye care is a service that has a high credibility attribute compared to offerings that are high on experience or search attributes, and this influences the approach used for promotion.
Student will learn to appreciate the issues faced by rural marketers, including the difficulties faced in reaching rural markets and the unwillingness of rural consumers to easily accept promotional messages. The influence of personal, trustworthy sources of information on rural consumers limits the use of mass media. The high cost of reaching dispersed rural communities is also appreciated in the case.
The case helps students appreciate the use of IT for effective service delivery in dispersed markets.
Health Care Services
Tamil Nadu, India, Large, 2010
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