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Why People Might Not Want Your Product (Even if it Saves Thousands of Lives)

๐ŸŒˆ Abstract

The article discusses the factors that affect the adoption of innovations, using historical examples like the adoption of lemon juice to prevent scurvy and the Dvorak keyboard. It outlines the five key factors that influence the diffusion of innovations, as identified by Everett Rogers: relative advantage, complexity, compatibility, trialability, and observability.

๐Ÿ™‹ Q&A

[01] Factors Affecting Innovation Adoption

1. What are the five key factors that influence the diffusion of innovations, according to Everett Rogers? The five key factors are:

  • Relative advantage: The degree to which an innovation is perceived as being better than the idea it supersedes.
  • Complexity: The degree to which an innovation is perceived as relatively difficult to understand and use.
  • Compatibility: The degree to which an innovation is perceived as consistent with the existing values, past experiences, and needs of potential adopters.
  • Trialability: The degree to which an innovation may be experimented with on a limited basis.
  • Observability: The degree to which the results of an innovation are visible to others.

2. How do these five factors relate to the historical examples of lemon juice and the Dvorak keyboard?

  • The lemon juice innovation had a clear relative advantage in preventing scurvy, but it took a long time to be adopted by the British Navy.
  • The Dvorak keyboard has objective advantages over the QWERTY keyboard, but it has not been widely adopted due to factors like complexity (the need to relearn typing) and compatibility (existing familiarity with QWERTY).

3. Why is addressing all five factors important for the successful adoption of an innovation? Focusing on just one or even four of the five factors may not be enough for an innovation to be widely adopted. The article states that "to a greater or lesser extent, they all need to be addressed" for an innovation to succeed.

[02] Implications for Crowdfunding and Ecommerce

1. How are the five factors relevant to crowdfunding and ecommerce? The article suggests that the five factors are "super relevant to crowdfunding, as well as ecommerce in general." Innovators need to consider all five factors when bringing a new product or service to market, whether through crowdfunding or ecommerce.

2. What specific strategies can innovators use to address the five factors in crowdfunding and ecommerce? The article provides some examples, such as:

  • Designing for relative advantage, complexity, and compatibility
  • Offering free trials or demos to increase trialability
  • Leveraging online reviews and social media to increase observability

3. Why is it important for innovators to focus on more than just the technical merits of their product or service? The article emphasizes that "perception is everything and everything is relative." Innovators need to consider how their innovation is perceived by potential adopters, not just its objective technical advantages.

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