Purpose – This paper aims to analyse the role of market orientation in the internationalisation of small software firms. Design/methodology/approach – The study combines qualitative case studies with quantitative data from the firms in question. Findings – Market orientation in the internationalisation of knowledge‐intensive small firms consists of three elements: customer orientation, competitor orientation and value‐network coordination. Achieving a successful balance between these elements will considerably smoothen the internationalisation process. Practical implications – The results of this study suggest that small companies should consider their market‐oriented behaviour in line with their value network. The role of market orientation may also vary according to market‐pull or technology‐push conditions. Originality/value – This study is among the first empirical contributions to combine the internationalisation and market‐orientation approaches in studying SMEs. It also contributes to achieving a better understanding of the market‐orientation concept from the perspective of small high‐technology firms.
European Journal of Marketing – Emerald Publishing
Published: Nov 14, 2008
Keywords: International organizations; Market orientation; Small enterprises; Computer software; Electronic commerce; Finland
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