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Paper info: Salespeople's Value Creation in Customer Interaction An Empirical Study


Salespeople's Value Creation in Customer Interaction An Empirical Study


Lena Hohenschwert

Place of Publication

The paper was published at the 27th IMP-conference in Glasgow, Scotland in 2011.


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Manufacturing businesses that try to escape from commoditization and price pressure by
becoming service providers or solution suppliers try to take the opportunity to create
customer value through activities that go beyond the provision of resources to a given usage
process. If the supplier aims to get involved in activities beyond the pure delivery of a
product, a more cooperative and interactive business exchange seems necessary. The service
and industrial marketing literatures acknowledge this interactive, relational and more
intangible exchange of businesses, this study argues however, that the knowledge about the
individual level processes of value creation in these business interactions is not sufficient. In
order to understand these individual processes, consultative salespeople in the paper
packaging industry are observed in their work and interaction with their customers. The study
explores the ways the salesperson uses certain activities and resources in the interaction with
the customer in order to facilitate and create value. Five different types of value co-creation
processes have been identified problem co-creation, problem solving dialogue, solution
integration, and value-in-use facilitation and creating value-in-use experience.