Diffusion of Innovation Theory

Or, is this thing most excellent or what?

So this really smart guy, Everett Rogers, wrote a paper in 1962 that still proves true today. It places people into 5 categories for the purpose of understanding how we behave in response to an introduction of new technology. It’s illustrated in many ways but I like this one.

Where are you on this curve?

This curve has been studied and verified by marketers for over half a century and the ones who fully understand how this affects purchasing tend to guide their company to success. They don’t have to be purveyors of the technology; they can be consumers of available, applicable innovations.

Without getting into the weeds about this subject, suffice to say that while someone might be an innovator in their personal life, they could be a laggard in business; or vice versa.

I attended a marketing workshop last week and I could not believe that some of the other attendees were resistant to the idea that people make buying decisions based on emotion. While there’s proof that facts do come into play, it takes a back seat to emotion in decision making. This holds true with both business and consumers.

So where do you think you land on the diffusion of innovation scale? Give that some thought. Come back for more next week.

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