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Using sales agents in project marketing

Research output: Other conference contributionPaper, poster or abstractScientific


Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2017
EventIRNOP International Research Network on Organizing by Projects Conference 2017 - Boston University, Boston, United States
Duration: 11 Jun 201714 Jun 2017


ConferenceIRNOP International Research Network on Organizing by Projects Conference 2017
Abbreviated titleIRNOP
CountryUnited States
Internet address


Many project-based firms (PBF) provide tailored solutions to a global marketplace. Success in project marketing calls for both a systematic collection and processing of customer information and active development of customer relationships on potential markets. When the base of PBF’s potential customers is not necessarily concentrated on specific market areas, project marketing activities may be prohibitively expensive to be fully carried out in-house. To combine the ability to serve global markets with an acceptable cost level, the PBF may outsource a part of its project marketing activities to external sales agents. As the use of sales agents is insufficiently covered in previous project research, we explore how Energy Solutions, a PBF delivering solutions to the process industry, routinely utilizes sales agents in its project marketing process. Drawing on interviews carried out with 14 individuals, our analysis resulted in a categorization of sales agents based on the breadth of their involvement in the project marketing process: no agent involvement, agent as lead seeker, agent as consultant, and agent as value-adding partner. The findings highlight the different ways to involve sales agents in project marketing and complement earlier research discussing the roles of external actors in the marketing of complex systems in the global marketplace.