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(product development definition)
A small group of potential
users who need new products before the general market recognizes the need. If this need can be satisfied, the lead user expects significant benefits. Because lead users have a specific problem to be solved in their own organizations, they can provide valuable information and assistance to a product developing organization.
The buying organizations that consistently are early adopters of new technologies. Lead users have needs that will become general in the marketplace later on, benefit significantly by obtaining a solution to those needs, and often largely influence other firms' buying decisions. For example, Intel has been a lead user of microchip production equipment.
American Marketing Association.
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