An Exploratory Role Analysis Of Opinion Leaders, Adopters, And Communicative Adopters With A Dynamically Continuous Innovation

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Mary F. Hazeldine
Morgan P. Miles

Keywords

communicative adopters, change agents, dynamically continuous innovations

Abstract

Since Venkatraman’s (1989) research on communicative adopters, little attention has been directed toward this segment of consumers who are often very important actors in the adoption process.  This research is designed to examine whether Venkatraman's (1989) communicative adopter concept is applicable to dynamically continuous innovations, in this case, Graphic User Interface (GUI) computer software. The communicative adopter group was found to be significantly different than all other groups on all constructs except homophily.  Consistent with Venkatraman's (1989) research, the communicative adopter segment can be called "Change Agents."  Each of the three segments, opinion leaders, adopters, and communicative adopters, is important to marketers of new GUI computer software, but this research suggests that the best prospects in terms of marketing efforts are the communicative adopters.  The results extend research in this area and provide support for theory development.  Issues with respect to managerial implications, such as market segmentation strategies, are also discussed.

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