University of Oulu

Sirotkin, Andrey (2014) How to build an experience differentiation strategy for software business : customer values perspective. VTT Science 63. URI:

How to build an experience differentiation strategy for software business : customer values perspective

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Author: Sirotkin, Andrey1
Organizations: 1University of Oulu, Oulu Business School, Department of Marketing
Format: ebook
Version: published version
Language: English
Published: Espoo : VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, 2014
Publish Date: 2014-08-28
Thesis type: Doctoral Dissertation
Defence Note: Thesis for the degree of Doctor of Science (Economics and Business Administration) to be presented with due permission for public examination and criticism in Oulu Linnanmaa, at The University of Oulu, auditorium TA105 on the 5thof September at 12 o’clock noon.
Tutor: Professor Minna Isomursu
Professor Timo Koivumäki
Reviewer: Doctor Robert Sweo
Professor Jukka Heikkilä
Opponent: Professor Pasi Tyrväinen
Kustos: Professor Timo Koivumäki


This thesis takes a human values perspective on the concept of differentiation. The aim is to understand how the concept applies to experience creation in a software company, and how decisions about experiences can be made. The monograph suggests a values-in-experience differentiation concept, develops a decision-making framework and a method for introducing values into the strategic decision process. A software case-company is used to implement the tool and attest the values perspective for experience creation.

The goal of a business strategy is to establish a unique position for the company’s offerings in the minds of customers, while maintaining financial results. Historically, uniqueness was achieved by focusing on product and service features. The experience view, however, departs from the historical assumptions about the nature and sources of differentiation. This thesis examines both the assumptions and changes of differentiation by experience.

The apparent complexity of experiences requires research approaches of a matching complexity that suits the understanding of the challenges that managers face over the course of the experience creation. The thesis suggests that values provide both a stable platform and a flexible environment to guide the strategy process. The research contrasts the human values perspective with the traditional concept of needs and rational view. It proposes that the stability and the universal nature of values seem to provide grounds for combating the risks in experimentation, formulation and re-configuration of a unique position of company’s offerings.

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Series: VTT Science
ISSN: 2242-119X
ISSN-E: 2242-1203
ISSN-L: 2242-119X
ISBN: 978-951-38-8280-8
ISBN Print: 978-951-38-8273-0
Issue: 63