The value co-destruction process: a customer resource perspective

Anne M. Smith (Centre for Strategy and Marketing, The Open University Business School, Milton Keynes, UK)

European Journal of Marketing

ISSN: 0309-0566

Publication date: 11 November 2013

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to adopt a conservation of resources (COR) theoretical approach to examine the process of value co-destruction (VCD) emanating from the misuse of customer resources by organisations.

Design/methodology/approach

A critical incidents approach was adopted where 120 customers recounted their negative experiences. The analysis identified both the nature of resources and processes involved.

Findings

From a customer perspective, the VCD process is triggered by a failure of the resource integration process to co-create expected value (resources). This involves customers in unexpected primary, and often secondary, resource loss. Loss “cycles” or “spirals” develop impacting negatively on well-being. Customers' attempts to restore their resources through coping strategies typically involve loss of well-being for the organisation.

Research limitations/implications

The research is limited to a relatively small sample of UK customers involving diverse contexts. However, COR theory provides a framework for a better understanding of customer perceived value, the value co-creation and co-destruction process.

Practical implications

The findings offer a new perspective to practitioners for understanding customer expectations and behaviour. There is a need to re-evaluate and re-design value propositions in line with organisational capabilities and customers' resource needs.

Social implications

Organisations' misuse of customers' resources negatively impacts on “well-being”: a phenomenon of increasing interest at the societal level.

Originality/value

This study is the first to empirically examine the concept of VCD, as perceived and experienced by customers, from a resource ecology perspective. It contributes to the growing body of work deriving from the service-dominant logic approach to value co-creation.

Keywords

Citation

M. Smith, A. (2013), "The value co-destruction process: a customer resource perspective", European Journal of Marketing, Vol. 47 No. 11/12, pp. 1889-1909. https://doi.org/10.1108/EJM-08-2011-0420

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Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2013, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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