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Definition: Diffusion of Innovation
Diffusion of Innovation is a theory that explains how over a period of time, an idea or a product offering gains popularity or diffuses through social system & culture. The final result of diffusion is that the people accept the new idea or product after some time. Adoption of innovation does not happen at same time for all individuals, some of them are more suitable to adapt the innovation. Also, as per the researches the people who accept innovation early have different characteristics then people who accept it late. There are 5 well known adopter categories:
Innovator- These are the people who don’t mind to try a new innovation. These people are interested in new ideas & are even willing to take more risks as compared to others.
Early adopter –These are the people acting as opinion leaders. They enjoy leadership roles. They are comfortable in adopting the new idea as they are already aware of the need to change.
Early Majority-These people do not belong to any leader category but do adopt the new ideas before an average person. These people typically require some kind of evidence before they are ready to adopt it.
Late Majority- These people are skeptical of the innovation & would not try until the innovation has been tried & tested by majority. To attract such people you need to have information such as how many people have tried the innovation & have adopted it
Laggards- These are the group of people who are hardest to convince as they are bound by tradition. They are very conservative & are very skeptical to any change. To convince them one requires all kind of statistical data, appeals & testimonials of other adopters.