As an individual, how you embrace innovation will directly affect how you create & deliver your innovative product. This is called Individual adoption.

Theorist & sociologist Everett Roger has proposed the “Diffusion of Innovation”, according to him each individual will go through 5 steps to accept a new product:

What is Diffusion of Innovation?

① Knowledge: The individual is aware of the existence of the innovative idea & what it needs to meet.

② Persuasion: The extent to which each individual develops a positive or negative attitude towards innovation & how innovation meets their needs.

③ Decision: The individual’s decision whether they will embrace the innovation or reject it.

④ Implementation (Implementation): The individual begins to use innovation to satisfy a need.

⑤ Confirmation: The final step for individuals to decide if they are satisfied with the innovation is when they continue to use it and recommend it to others.

You see, this process happens to each individual — one by one.

However, innovations are not accepted by all individuals in a system at the same time. Instead, they tend to accept chronologically.

Based on that, Roger divided consumers into 5 categories of people corresponding to the time sequence they adopted innovation. It is represented by the S-curve:

Innovators: The person who is willing to take risks, has the highest social status, financial liquidity (the ability to buy and sell products quickly at market prices), is social & has the closest relationship with scientific resources & interact with innovators. Their risk-taking ability allows them to accept technologies that can fail. Having strong financial resources helps absorb these failures.

Early adopters: These individuals have the highest levels of opinion leadership. They have higher social status, financial liquidity, advanced education and better socialization than late adopters. They are more cautious in choosing to accept than innovators. They use the wise choice of adopting innovation to help them maintain a central media position.

Early Majority: They accept innovation after a significantly longer time difference than innovators and early adopters. This group has average social status, exposure to early adopters, and rarely holds positions that lead public opinion in a systematic way.

Late Majority: They adopt innovation after the average participant. These individuals approach an innovation with a high degree of skepticism & after the majority of society has approved the innovation. Late adopters are generally skeptical of an innovation, have lower than average social standing, have little financial liquidity, have contact with others from the late & early adopters, have little opinion. thought to guide public opinion.

Laggards: They are the last to accept innovation. These individuals often have an aversion to innovation managers. They tend to focus on “tradition”, the lowest social status, the lowest financial liquidity, the oldest of the adopters; Only contact with family & close friends.

Because each group has a different background and approach to new things, you need to have a different approach to each customer group.

So in upcoming new product launches, consider this “innovation diffusion theory”. I believe you will have more reasonable strategies with each of your customer groups!

And you, which group of people are you in?

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