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  • Kindström, Daniel; Kowalkowski, Christian; Nordin, Fredrik (Emerald Group Publishing Ltd., 2012)
    Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to explore strategies for visualizing the value of service-based offerings in a B2B context. By taking a process perspective on the offering life cycle, this paper also aims at distinguishing which visualization strategies are most appropriate using at which life-cycle stages. Design/methodology/approach – The study employed a qualitative, multiple-case study research design involving five manufacturing firms. Findings – Primary findings are that firms need to make use of several different visualization strategies depending on, among other things, the key stakeholders and also where the firm's offering is currently positioned in the service-based offering life cycle. Research limitations/implications – While the empirical data is from only one sector – i.e. manufacturing – managers from other B2B sectors should have an interest in the results and the key aspects identified. Further research could also establish linkages to performance metrics. Originality/value – Visualization strategies have been relatively rarely studied from a B2B perspective, and the process dimension, especially, is novel.
  • Holmlund, Maria; Törnroos, Jan-Åke (Emerald Group Publishing, 1997)
  • Kowalkowski, Christian; Windahl, Charlotta; Kindström, Daniel; Gebauer, Heiko (Elsevier Inc., 2015)
    Both academics and practitioners emphasize the importance for product firms of implementing service-led growth strategies. The service transition concept is well established, namely a unidirectional repositioning along a product-service continuum—from basic, product-oriented services towards more customized, process-oriented ones—ultimately leading to the provision of solutions. We challenge this service transition assumption and develop alternative ones regarding how product firms should pursue service-led growth. Using ‘problematization methodology’, and drawing on findings from thirteen system suppliers, we identify three service-led growth trajectories: (1) becoming an availability provider, which is the focus of most transition literature; (2) becoming a performance provider, which resembles project-based sales and implies an even greater differentiation of what customers are offered; and, (3) becoming an ‘industrializer’, which is about standardizing previously customized solutions to promote repeatability and scalability. Based on our critical inquiry, we develop two alternative assumptions: (a) firms need to constantly balance business expansion and standardization activities; and (b) manage the co-existence of different system supplier roles. Finally, we consider the implications for implementing service-led growth strategies of the alternative assumptions.