This paper examines the basis for the primacy advantages that pioneers
enjoy, then applies it to the strategic plight of followers. The authors develop
and test a Model of Innovation Learning that shows how individuals relate
their understanding of new products to those with which they've had previous
exposure. In an application of the model to the introduction of a new packaged
good, three factors - relative advantage, expertise, and familiarity are
found to have statistically significant effects on perceived distinctiveness;
and perceived distinctiveness is found to be a predictor of perceptual separation
and primacy advantage. Suggestions are given to assist in strategy formulation
decisions for followers.
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