Use this Technology Adoption Curve slide to visualize the behavior of individuals and organizations when adopting new technologies. This theory has evolved since first put into practice for farming to include consumer products and technology. More recently Geoffrey A. Moore, in his book Crossing the Chasm, used this model as the foundation for how to market high tech products during the early start up period. The process of adoption is illustrated with a bell curve and contains five defined groups of people based on specific demographic and psychological characteristics.
The characteristics of the five groups include:
Innovators. The initial users of a new product or technology tend to be more educated, prosperous, and risk-oriented than other members of the market. They are enthusiasts who love technology, and often adopt something simply because it is new.
Early Adopters. The early adopter market tends to be younger and more educated than the mainstream market. They are leaders who apply emerging technologies to the opportunities that are important to them.
Early Majority. The first mainstream users to adopt a new product or technology tend to be more conservative than early adopters, but are open to new ideas. They will not take on the risk of being a pioneer, but will embrace a technology once its gotten some traction. This group is at the beginning of a mass market acceptance.
Late Majority. This segment of the market tends to be older, less educated, fairly conservative and less socially active. Late adopters dislike constant innovation, but will begin to use new technologies after widespread acceptance.
Laggards. The final adopters of a new technology tend to be the oldest, most conservative, and least educated segment of the market. They don't like technology and prefer the old fashioned way of doing things. They only adopt new technologies when it's clear that the technology they are currently using is woefully obsolete.
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