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What does Crossing the Chasm mean?

“Crossing the chasm” is a marketing term coined by Geoffrey A. Moore in his book “Crossing the Chasm: Marketing and Selling High-Tech Products to Mainstream Customers”.

The term refers to the challenge that technology companies face when trying to transition from serving early adopters of their products to reaching a broader market of mainstream customers.

According to Moore, there are five groups of customers who adopt new technologies: innovators, early adopters, early majority, late majority, and laggards.

The first two groups, innovators and early adopters are typically receptive to new technologies and willing to take risks in trying them out. However, the early majority, which represents the largest market segment, is more skeptical and requires more evidence of a technology’s value before adopting it. This “chasm” between early adopters and the early majority is where many technology companies fail to make the transition and reach a wider market.

To cross the chasm, Moore recommends that technology companies focus on a specific target market, such as a particular industry or customer segment, and create a beachhead in that market by providing a complete solution that addresses the specific needs and pain points of that market.

This allows the company to build a reputation and gain traction with early adopters in that market, who can then serve as references and advocates for the company as it expands into other markets.

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