به سوی یک چارچوب ارزیابی ارزش مشتری در بازارهای B2B: مطالعه اکتشافی
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|23901||2013||11 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||10513 کلمه|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Industrial Marketing Management, Volume 42, Issue 8, November 2013, Pages 1307–1317
This paper examines the key processes and activities of customer value assessment in business-to-business (B2B) markets. Given that an increasing number of B2B firms are providing combinations of products and services, or integrated solutions, the present study examines customer value assessment from the solution supplier's perspective. Specifically, based on an exploratory field study and in-depth interviews with 18 managers in three different firms, the present study identifies five key processes (i.e., value potential identification, baseline assessment, performance evaluation, long-term value realization, and systematic data management) and 11 related activities involved in customer value assessment in B2B markets, and integrates them into a managerially grounded framework. The findings from this study contribute to the literature on customer value and solution research, and provide useful insights for managers on how to assess the value delivered by their offerings to customers.
Creating and delivering superior customer value is considered one of the cornerstones in business-to-business (B2B) marketing (e.g., Anderson et al., 2009, Lindgreen et al., 2012 and Ulaga, 2011). Research on value-based purchasing, (Anderson & Wynstra, 2010), value-based selling (Terho, Haas, Eggert, & Ulaga, 2012), pricing (Liozu & Hinterhuber, 2013), and value (co)creation (Edvardsson et al., 2011 and Jaakkola and Hakanen, 2013) emphasizes that business marketers need to better understand how to create, communicate and deliver value to their customers. This is particularly prominent in the context of “integrated solutions”, (e.g., Jacob and Ulaga, 2008, Storbacka, 2011 and Windahl and Lakemond, 2010), that aim to offer greater potential for value creation beyond the individual product and service components (Evanschitzky et al., 2011 and Ulaga and Reinartz, 2011). Yet, understanding on how the value potential of solutions can be evaluated is limited, and frameworks to understand how suppliers and customers can assess their value are needed (Ulaga and Eggert, 2006 and Anderson and Wynstra, 2010). In the customer value literature, considerable effort has been expended to examine how suppliers create and deliver value to customers (e.g., Payne and Holt, 2001, Lindgreen and Wynstra, 2005 and Haas et al., 2012); however, less research has been conducted to examine the process through which the realized customer value is assessed (Woodruff & Flint, 2006, p. 188). Customer value assessment refers to quantifying and communicating the value created for (and with) customers (c.f. Anderson et al., 2006 and Payne and Frow, 2005). Prior research has advanced our knowledge by developing specific tools and identifying best practices for customer value assessment (e.g., Anderson et al., 1993, Anderson et al., 2006 and Ulaga and Chacour, 2001), but they are designed predominantly for physical products, and have difficulties with assessing the value of complex and service-intensive offerings. Consequently, scholars have contended that “improved ways of measuring the delivery of customer value are required” (Payne, Storbacka, & Frow, 2008), and highlighted developing new methods for customer value assessment as a key research priority (e.g., Lindgreen et al., 2012 and Payne and Holt, 2001). In the solutions literature, delivering integrated combinations of products and services instead of individual components is regarded as a key to differentiation and higher margins (e.g., Evanschitzky et al., 2011 and Ulaga and Reinartz, 2011). However, research explicating how solution offerings deliver value to customers, or improve their businesses, is scarce. In fact, several studies in the solution domain suggest that industrial firms often struggle to develop the skills and processes needed to quantify the value of solutions (Sawhney, 2006, Sharma and Iyer, 2011 and Storbacka, 2011). In practice, customer value assessment represents an “Achilles heel” for many industrial firms that provide combinations of products and services, i.e. hybrid offerings and customer solutions (Tuli et al., 2007 and Ulaga and Reinartz, 2011). Accordingly, more understanding is needed on specific processes and activities that relate to customer value assessment. This study focuses on examining customer value assessment from the solution supplier's perspective. Specifically, we examine the processes and practices that suppliers undertake in their value assessment activities. To address this both academically and managerially relevant issue, we examine the following research questions: 1) What are the key processes for customer value assessment? 2) What are the specific activities that comprise each key process? Given the sparse literature on customer value assessment in B2B markets, we answer these questions through a qualitative in-depth study that applies a grounded theory approach (Glaser & Strauss, 1967). Based on insights generated through in-depth interviews with 18 managers from three industrial firms, we develop a tentative framework for customer value assessment comprising five key processes: value potential identification, baseline assessment, performance evaluation, long-term value realization, and systematic data management, and 11 related activities. The findings from this study contribute to the extant literature on customer value in B2B markets (e.g., Lindgreen et al., 2012) and solutions research (e.g., Evanschitzky et al., 2011) by shedding light on the key processes and activities that relate to customer value assessment. From a practical perspective, this study offers important insights for managers on how to assess the value that solutions deliver to customers. The rest of the manuscript proceeds as follows. First, we review the extant literature on customer value in B2B markets and the solutions literature, and consider current approaches to customer value assessment. Second, we present our qualitative study and, based on the findings, tentatively propose an empirically grounded framework for customer value assessment in B2B markets. Finally, we present our conclusions, and suggest managerial implications and areas for future research.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
Customer value is one of the key concepts in marketing, and assessing the value delivered to customers is a major challenge for industrial firms that provide solution offerings. In this exploratory study, we empirically examined the process of customer value assessment from the perspectives of three solution suppliers. Based on the findings generated through in-depth interviews with 18 managers, this study suggests a tentative, process-based framework for customer value assessment comprising five key processes: value potential identification, baseline assessment, performance evaluation, long-term value realization, and systematic data management. We have examined these processes in detail, and propose their application in both research and practice. Given the increasing importance of customer value assessment, we hope that our exploratory study offers new insights and fuels further research on this critical area.