The agony of being an Early Adopter


Have you ever sat down at home, turned on the TV, and a loud and colorful commercial popped up for some new gadget or service, convincing you it’s the next big invention since the light bulb?

I know I have! And I’m just peacefully sitting there, trying to enjoy my dinner. But what really grinds my gears is how unrealistic the perceptions of an average person in those commercials seem to be. It’s usually a young, well-dressed and smiling individual, going mountain climbing, sky diving, or some other extreme activity, which, you see, is convincingly part of their daily life. And I just think to myself – who does that? Who leads a life like that? And then I just angrily click the channel, upset that I’ve seen yet another ‘ridiculous’ commercial.

But I’ve come to a crude realization recently. People like that DO exist, and they`re called Innovators. Simply, when you’re presenting a completely new product to the market, you need the biggest, boldest experience-seekers out there to buy it, test it, and tell all their friends about it. Like Google Glass for example. Their commercials are absurdly inaccurate representations of the daily lives of 20-something-year olds. But Google Glass isn’t targeting you average folk, it’s looking for those few who will push the product on the market, the Brand Ambassadors.

However, a Leader is  a nobody without his followers. Something, which most companies tend to forget, when entering a market with an innovative product/service. I can proudly say, that I’m an Early Adopter. That person that likes to be around the crazy friend who would go hot air ballooning over the weekend, but would rather wait for him to post pictures on Facebook and then maybe I’ll consider doing it, just maybe…

Derek Silvers, an amazing US entrepreneur, blogger, publisher and TED Talk Speaker, understands the importance of Early Adopters. His 3 minute talk on ‘Starting a movement’ reveals an astonishing, yet a simple truth – if you can’t drag the Early Adopters to the party, you likely won’t succeed in securing a position on the market with your new ‘gadget’.

So dear Marketing Gurus, enthusiasts and Brand Strategists – Please, next time you want to show me an amazing video of a peer, who’s cliff-jumping to promote a can of juice, please also consider poor old me, as I’m the average 20-something that will inevitably make or break your new product.


Teddy T


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