I look at product adoption from at least two sides. First, you want to look at it at the micro level. This level refers to the customer and is what you refer to in your notes. How does the lead become a customer, and how can we map the process to identify improvement opportunities?
The second level is the macro level, of course. At the macro level, we look at product adoption as the process by which a product ideally goes from unknown to popular. This level is more related to identifying a market niche and successfully exploiting it. This process is also understood in phases to assign metrics and measure performance.
There are plenty of models and studies about how people adopt products. There are a few constants and patterns from an empirical perspective (which is my preferred perspective almost always).
Here are some insights:
1- Some people are more attracted to trying new things than others. Finding out who they are and the main reasons they would be open to trying something new is critical to your product design and launch.
In digital product development, we ask two key questions: what tasks frustrate people, and which are more frequent? Find those, and you’ll have an initial target of people willing to try out your solution.
2- Repurchases are the primary metric. An adage in the product development world says marketing’s job is to get people to try your product, but it is R&D’s job to get them to repurchase it. If they buy again, it is a sign that the product is more than interesting.
3- Building hype is an art, but managing word of mouth is engineering. Hype happens when you start making noise beyond your niche. Your initial target is expanding, and you are learning about new case uses and users. You want to become part of people’s culture, i.e., their day-to-day.
It would be best if you made it easy for your existing customers to share their success with your product. Testimonials, reviews, and referrals need to be designed and incentivized. This is how you create social proof, which is essential for your product to be adopted en masse.
4- Advocacy and ownership are the most advanced stages in the product adoption process. A rite of passage between you and your users, where they gain ownership over your product and win with you.
This is the better way to implement an influencer strategy. Get people to love your brand and product and make it a part of their narrative and portfolio.
*Product adoption stages *
*The stages of product adoption are generally considered to be Awareness, Interest, Evaluation, Trial, Activation, and Adoption. *
· Is this a linear process, or can users move forwards and backward? Or even skip stages?
· What influences users to move through the different stages?
· Which product adoption strategies, tools, and processes can companies use to help move users through each stage?
· How can they influence or cater to the different profiles of product adopters along the adoption curve (Innovators, Early Adopters, Early Majority, Late Majority, Laggards)?
· Given that there will be users within every stage at any given time, how can companies prioritize their efforts and resources to ensure maximum adoption?
· *(Very briefly, as this is not the focus of this piece*), which metrics should internal teams responsible for product adoption be tracking at each stage?
· What makes a good product adoption process (i.e., continuously learning about your users) versus a weak one?
*Product adoption in action *
· Can you give some concrete examples of product adoption methods in action? i.e.,* Install a chatbot to help users find answers to common FAQs when onboarding.
· For each example, which stage/s of product adoption, or which adopter profile, does it best cater to, and how does it help move users through the stages of adoption?