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Early Adoption, It’s So Mainstream

As we set out on our Webby Talks tour this fall, we had a pretty good idea that “The Frenzy for First" would resonate with the digital companies we visited. From funding Kickstarter projects, to lining up for exclusive baked goods, to real-time marketing, and queueing for apps, first was definitely not the worst when it came to staying on trend this past year. And today, we’re excited to share the results of a survey we conducted with Harris Interactive that has proven that early adoption is just as big as we thought it was.

With 56% of Americans saying that they have been the first amongst their network to try a new product, technology, or service, these findings reveal a seismic cultural shift, as the historically small community of early adopters expands to a much broader audience.

Social media is the catalyst, with the “firsters,” as we’ve dubbed the early adopter populationnot only eager be the first to try new technologies, but also equally excited to share their experiences online. 45% of social media users say that they’ve shared photos or thoughts about a new product/service they’ve tried.

And it’s easy to see why we’re so eager to share: With an overwhelming 62% of respondents saying that they are at least somewhat likely to make a purchase based on a friend’s social media post, there’s a lot of status at stake.

Social media has democratized influence, and the larger base of early adopters go online to share their opinions, purchases, and experiences with intent. 67% say that they believe what they share online shapes others perceptions about them – and they’re probably right, because 70% indicated that their perceptions of others are influenced by what they’re posting online. 

So with concrete proof that early adoption is at an all-time high, we wrap up our Webby Talks tour this season. And when you read about this phenomenon all over the Internet, just remember that you heard it here first. 


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