Finn Wynstra awarded for article on purchasing value


Finn Wynstra

The Editorial Board of the Journal of Business-to-Business Marketing has voted "Purchasing Higher-Value, Higher-Price Offerings in Business Markets" by James C. Anderson and <link people finn-wynstra _blank>Finn Wynstra as Outstanding Article of the Year for 2010.

The main criteria used in the selection process were:

  1. the overall contribution of the research to the field of business marketing
  2. the likelihood of greatest impact in the future  

The publisher Taylor and Francis generously awards framed certificates and a cash prize of $500 to the author team.

Abstract of "Purchasing Higher-Value, Higher-Price Offerings in Business Markets"

It is the responsibility of marketing and sales to get an equitable or fair return on the value that their firm’s offerings deliver in business markets. When an offering delivers superior value relative to the incumbent or next-best alternative offering, a supplier firm often would seek to claim a portion of this superior value provided by asking for a higher price relative to that of the incumbent or next-best alternative. Although this is an essential part of customer value management, remarkably little research in business markets has been done on understanding what would persuade business customers to purchase higher-value, yet higher-price offerings. To study the effects of alternative ways to promote such offerings, the authors developed two experiments.

One possibility is to give customers a greater proportion of the incremental value in relation to the increase in price. The study finds that such an “incentive to change” acts as a threshold in the minds of customer managers. An implication of this is that supplier managers may be giving more value away than is necessary.

Alternatively, “value evidence” appears an effective manipulation of ambiguity about superior value. Suppliers should conduct pilot programmes with beta-test customers to understand the value delivered by new or enhanced offerings. The results of the pilot programs, when they are carefully designed and monitored, enable the supplier to document the actual value in monetary terms that the beta customers receive. Suppliers then can use the documented results to create reference customer lists and value case histories.

The finding that reference lists of respected competitors were as effective as confirming pilot program findings in persuading customer managers to have higher purchase intentions for higher-value, higher-price offerings suggests this two-stage strategy.