Triggers for virtual customer integration in the development of medical equipment: from a manufacturer and a user perspective

Johann Füller, Rita Faullant, Kurt Matzler

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Virtual customer integration (VCI) involves customers throughout all stages of the new product development process. Firms across industries have started to experiment with virtual user integration and expect to utilize their knowledge, creativity, and judgment. However, little research exists that looks at the motivations of customers and managers to engage in virtual product development projects. In this paper we try to identify the triggers for virtual customer integration (VCI) from the manager's as well as from the customer's perspective. Using Ajzen's Theory of Planned Behavior we aim at explaining managers' motivation for the adoption of VCI based on a sample of 104 managers engaged in the product development process of manufacturing firms of medical technology. Drawing on motive research, we test six categories of customer motivations to engage in VCI projects on a sample of 105 users of medical technology. The results show that for mangers subjective norms and attitude predict the intention to use VCI. For customers, interest in innovation and product improvement are the most important drivers, whereas monetary compensation and prestige are not significant, and surprisingly the desire to help people even has a negative impact on the participation of VCI.
Original languageEnglish
JournalIndustrial Marketing Management
Issue number8
Pages (from-to)1376-1383
Publication statusPublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes

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