Selling Hitech & Innovation Products vs FMCG Products — Why are they different
We often discuss that Hi-tech and Innovation Products are highly sophisticated and follow a technology S-curve as far as its evolution is concerned, additionally the customers for these products follow an adoption curve as propounded by Everett & Geoffrey Moore.
It would be best if we try to explain the difference in Hi-tech product vis-à-vis FMCG products using both these curves, as they shed a light on something which is fundamentally different between the 2 categories of products.
The important thing is to align or superimpose both the technology curve and adoption cycle together. As we can see, In case of Hi-tech products, the product is constant evolving and follows the S-curve, which also means that the product being experienced by each of the segments is completely different. Therefore, the product being experienced by the innovators would be in stark contrast to the product being experienced by the late majority. This would mean a completely different marketing and product strategy for each group. This is inherently unique for Hi-tech products.
Lets take the example of a daily use product like Soap like Lifebuoy, we use it everyday and its part of our lives. If one were to draw the technology curve for the Soap bar, it would most probably be a straight line with minor modifications. Maybe, the lather produced is more or the scent might have been improved or the soap might have been made tear free. But they are practically the technological improvements one can think off, which might have occurred over the lifecycle of the soap. Now, when we superimpose the technology curve with the adoption cycle, this is where we see the big difference between Hitech products and our standard FMCG products, in case of soap, the product being experienced by every segment of the market whether its innovators or the laggards is practically the same.
Whereas, in the earlier case as we saw, the product being experienced by the different segments of the customers was very different. As the product is evolving and thus each segment is experiencing a different product. This, has a lot of implications on the way the product is marketed to the customers.
This is exactly what sets Hi-Tech products apart from FMCG products.
Learnings from the course “Hi-tech and Innovation Marketing” during my time at B-School