Crossing the Chasm to a Smart Grid

Put this one on your must-read list: The 2011 State of the Consumer Report by Smart Grid Consumer Collaborative (SGCC). It’s 38 pages of clear, comprehensive meta-analysis, compiling research and insights of over 80 studies and white papers. In coming weeks, we’ll dig into a few of the report’s eight major topics. � First up: early adopters.� � Geoffrey A. Moore’s 1991 best seller Crossing the Chasm examined the way in which early adopters of disruptive technologies provide the foothold for later adoption and acceptance. � Identifying those early adopters is an important first step. The report culls out three particular groups: � Technophiles: Early adopters are often high awareness, knowledgeable consumers who embrace technology. Take Best Buy’s ideal customer: someone who participates in social networks, owns a smart phone, and is a married homeowner earning over $50,000 per year. � Personal Experience: Early adopters might have lived through major storms that have caused widespread outages for several days, engendering regional support and acceptance for upgrading the grid. � Greens with Flexibility: Those committed to the environment comprise an obvious third group, but such households must also have the willingness to commit time and personal resources to the cause. Those who are just too busy or distracted lag behind their fellow environmentalists. A focus on attainable goals and simple behavioral changes will engage this group. � These early adopters, motivated by a higher sense of purpose and commitment - even a gee-whiz love of technology - will champion change and engagement, setting the adoption cycle in motion.