Lead User Identification through Twitter: Case Study for Camera Lens Products
Editor: Miko Laakso, Kalevi Ekman
Author: Pajo, Sanjin; Verhaegen, Paul-Armand; Vandevenne, Dennis; Duflou, Joost R.
Institution: KU Leuven, Belgium
Section: Users in design and development
Lead users are a significant segment of the user population that exhibit product use related needs that cannot be met by existing commercially available solutions. They expect high benefits from actively engaging in innovation activities. To identify lead users, researchers have looked to the Web as a potential source of lead users. This paper discusses identification of lead users on the social networking site Twitter using a validated online questionnaire, that explores various facets of being a lead user including speed of product adoption, technical expertise, dissatisfaction with commercially available solutions, opinion leadership and innovation activity. The results of the documented study show that lead users in the case of lens products have a presence on Twitter and they support further exploration of automated and systematic online approaches to finding and identifying lead users, a crucial step at the fuzzy front end of innovation.