Early tech adopters are a small share of the US population. Here’s why brands should target them
January 6th, 2023, Rishad Dsouza

Early tech adopters are a small share of the US population. Here’s why brands should target them

Data from YouGov Profiles shows that just over a fifth of Americans are early tech adopters (22%). Early tech adopters in this piece refer to those who are either “actively on the lookout to buy new technology devices and services” or “are always keen to use new technology products as soon as they enter the market”.

While this group forms a minority of the overall population, brands may find it particularly beneficial to target them as early tech adopters are likely to recommend the products they like to others. Over three-fourths of them agree with the statement “I love recommending things for people to try” (77%) compared to just 55% of the overall US population.

But does this tendency to recommend products materialise in practice? To answer that, we can look at a two relevant metrics on YouGov BrandIndex – WOM Exposure and Recommend. Data for the last quarter reveals that early tech adopters are noticeably likelier than the overall population to have spoken about leading smartphone brands with their friends and family.

For example, WOM Exposure scores reveal that early tech adopters have been twice as likely to speak to their friends and family about Google Pixel (14% vs 6%) compared to the overall population. Similarly, a fifth of early tech adopters (21%) say they would recommend Google Pixel to others, compared to just 13% of all US adults.

So, who are America’s early tech adopters?

Somewhat expectedly, the cohort of early tech adopters skews much younger than the overall population. Gen Z and millennials comprise seven-tenths of the early tech adopters while they make up only two-fifths of the national population (40%).

Two-thirds of America’s early tech adopters are men (66%), even though men form only 49% of the overall population.

They are seven percentage points likelier than the overall population to belong to higher-income households (15% vs 8%), but 38% of them still come from lower-income households (vs 45% of the overall population).

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Methodology: YouGov Profiles is based on continuously collected data and rolling surveys, rather than from a single limited questionnaire. Profiles data is nationally representative and weighted by age, gender, education, region, and race. Learn more about Profiles.

Image credit: Carol Magalhães on Unsplash