Individuals adopt und use personal communication tools (PCTs) such as instant messaging clients or social networking sites with diverse features to communicate with others. To understand individual communication behaviors, it is important to understand which values user obtain when they use spe-cific PCT features such as sending text, video, voice messages and pictures. However, even though PCTs are used extensively, it remains unclear why individual features are used. There is little IS re-search on the criteria according to which users decide between these PCT features. Therefore, this study investigates why individuals use different PCT features. In so doing, we reveal linkages between the features and the personal values that users try to derive while using them. We draw on the means-end chain approach, which provides a conceptual framework for identifying product attributes, their consequences and associated values. To obtain these factors, we conducted laddering interviews with PCT users. The results show that users seek to obtain different types of values such as utilitarian, he-donic and emotional values when choosing between PCT features and audience sizes. This study con-tributes to value-based IT usage literature and provides implications for PCT providers by revealing the values users attain by communicating via PCT features.