Even within your market, people and organizations are wildly different in how they make purchasing decisions.  There are five different kinds of customers as you move along the product adoption lifecycle.  However, at a very early stage, you can broadly categorize your segment into two very different customer groups – early adopters and the mass market.  A small percentage of the total market, early adopters are adventurous innovators who view technology as an opportunity to gain a competitive advantage.  They are typically younger, social, risk tolerant, and give useful feedback.  The mass market is usually the opposite – risk averse, skeptical, and slower to adopt.  Instead of seeing your product as an opportunity for advantage, they adopt technologies only to keep up with the times.  Marketing to the two groups is very different and it’s not uncommon to succeed in selling to early adopters but to fail with mainstream customers.  When you first start selling, make it your mission to find and sell to early adopters.  Get them on board early in your product development cycle, so you can get feedback and start generating revenue.  When you’re ready, hit the mainstream customers by adjusting your messaging and pitch.

Matt Sand

Author Matt Sand

Passionate about making a difference through innovation and entrepreneurship.

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