Competitive Intelligence from the Technology Adoption Lifecycle Stage 3

Authored bycascade

Three Insights about the Early Majority: Is It Safe Yet?

Moving a new product into the mainstream requires you to reduce the perceived risk associated with it by potential customers. The so-called Early Majority (also known as Pragmatists), representing about 35% of the entire market, represents the first stage of mainstream adoption. This risk-averse group looks for relatively proven solutions that are already in use by their peers, making it challenging to break into this customer group:

  1. The Opportunity. The Early Majority represents a large portion of the total market and the key to securing mainstream adoption; once they have been won over, this group can also be extremely loyal.
  2. The Challenge. Because this is essentially a group of followers, it is vital to demonstrate to them that others are already successfully using the solution; reference customers and case studies play an important role here.
  3. The Influence. As a product begins to take hold among the Early Majority, it gains momentum within this group and begins to exert some influence over Late Majority customers described in the next phase, especially within the same market vertical.

This is the third of five blog entries about the customer stages that make up the Technology Adoption Lifecycle. The first two relate to the stages of a product market’s development before it enters the mainstream: “Innovators: The Bleeding Edge” and “Early Adopters: The Search for Business Value.” The two posts that follow this one conclude the series by illustrating how market forces tend to change as the product seeks to attract customer groups that are slower to adopt new technology: “The Late Majority: Reluctant to be Led,” and finally, “Laggards: The Last to the Party.”

By Sean Campbell
By Scott Swigart

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