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Value Merchants

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Business-to-business markets--what the authors call "business markets"--account for a huge proportion of the total GNP in the United States and in other industrialized nations. However, many companies competing in business markets--typically commodity markets or those susceptible to commodization--must continually resist the relentless price pressures of their clients' purchasing managers. Incented to reduce their firm's procurement costs, purchasing agents argue that their supplier's product or service is a commodity, i.e. an easily replaceable equivalent. In such an environment, business market firms typically struggle to convince customers of the "value" of their offerings rather than simply focusing on the price. This book presents a compelling approach that allows suppliers to demonstrate and document superior value compared to the next best alternative from the customer's perspective, thereby elevating the sales force's role to an advisory position. Many of the examples will come from outside the USA. Audience: Senior management teams and senior managers in marketing and sales in the business-to-business world, in such markets as agricultural equipment (e.g., John Deere), automotive parts (e.g., Bosch), chemicals (e.g., Dow Chemicals), and oil and gas (e.g., Shell) as well as personal computers (e.g., Sun, Dell, Microsoft), telecommunications (e.g., Cisco, Lucent, Level 3, BT), and financial services (e.g., Amex, Morgan Stanley).
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About the Author

James Anderson is the William L. Ford Distinguished Professor of Marketing/Wholesale Distribution at the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University (IL); he is also a Fellow at the American Psychological Association, and has worked as a research psychology in corporate marketing at DuPont. Nirmalya Kumar is Professor of Marketing, Director of Centre for Marketing, and Co-Director of Aditya V. Birla India Center at London Business School; he taught previously at Columbia University, Harvard Business School, IMD, and Northwestern University. James Narus is a Professor of Marketing at the Babcock Graduate School of Management, Wake Forest University (Charlotte, NC); he is a member of the American Marketing Association, and has also worked in the corporate research division of DuPont.

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