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Hanken School of Economics Working Papers, Hanken School of Economics

No 542:
Marketing and the Logic of Service: Value Facilitation, Value Creation and Co-creation, and Their Marketing Implications

Christian Grönroos () and Annika Ravald ()

Abstract: The discussion of a service-dominant logic has made the findings of decades of service marketing research a topic of interest for marketing at large. Some fundamental aspects of the logic such as value creation and its marketing implications are more complex than they have been treated as so far and need to be further developed to serve marketing theory and practice well. Following the analysis in the present article it is argued that although customers are co-producers in service processes, according to the value-in-use notion adopted in the contemporary marketing and management literature they are fundamentally the creators of value for themselves. Furthermore, it is concluded that although by providing goods and services as input resources into customers’ consumption and value-generating processes firms are fundamentally value facilitators, interactions with customers that exist or can be created enable firms to engage themselves with their customers’ processes and thereby they become co-creators of value with their customers. As marketing implications it is observed that 1) the goal of marketing is to support customers’ value creation, 2) following a service logic and due to the existence of interactions where the firm’s and the customer’s processes merge into an integrated joint value creation process, the firm is not restricted to making value propositions only, but can directly and actively influence the customer’s value fulfilment as well and extend its marketing process to include activities during customer-firm interactions, and 3) although all goods and services are consumed as service, customers’ purchasing decisions can be expected to be dependant of whether they have the skills and interest to use a resource, such as a good, as service or want to buy extended market offerings including process-related elements. Finally, the analysis concludes with five service logic theses.

Keywords: Service logic; service-dominant logic; service marketing; marketing theory; (follow links to similar papers)

37 pages, August 28, 2009

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