Chapter 16Capturing Context through Service Design Stories

Katarina Wetter-Edman

Karlstad University

Peter R. Magnusson

Karlstad University


There is an ongoing trend of gradually increasing the amount of services product manufacturers offer. This is often referred to as servitization. Compared to products, services are considered to have longer life cycles and larger margins and to be more resistant to the business cycle. From a marketing perspective, services can be used to differentiate and increase value to the customer. Furthermore, services can also be a means of strengthening customer relations as they entail interacting with and understanding the customer. It is, however, often troublesome for product-oriented companies to handle services, partly due to lack of methods and tools. In this chapter, we present a narrative design-based method, CTN (Context Through Narratives) that captures users' current practices, experiences, situations, contexts, and expectations and integrates these in service innovation.

Servitization has been described as a multistaged change process. Common to different servitization models is that a supplier starts with offering services supporting its existing products in order to improve accessibility, for example, providing spare parts and maintenance. At the other end of the servitization spectrum is support for (at least parts of) the customer's operations, providing total solutions. Slightly simplified, servitization can be synthesized ...

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