Lead users play an integral part in helping engineers to identify latent needs of customers, and this approach has been used in a variety of ways within the design community. However, despite their close resemblance to lead users, do-it-yourself (DIY) practitioners have not been directly examined by the design community. A seven-step framework is presented where the first four steps resemble a typical design process and the remaining steps are relevant for the approach of identifying DIY practitioners as lead users. A case study from the hair care industry is presented to illustrate this framework. This paper establishes a connection between these two groups of customers and demonstrates how the insights of DIY practitioners, which manifest as latent needs for knowledge, can inspire research for the development of new technologies.
Using Do-It-Yourself Practitioners as Lead Users: A Case Study on the Hair Care Industry
Contributed by the Design Theory and Methodology Committee of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF MECHANICAL DESIGN. Manuscript received January 18, 2016; final manuscript received June 6, 2016; published online August 30, 2016. Assoc. Editor: Julie Linsey.
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Hahn, J., Marconnet, A., and Reid, T. (August 30, 2016). "Using Do-It-Yourself Practitioners as Lead Users: A Case Study on the Hair Care Industry." ASME. J. Mech. Des. October 2016; 138(10): 101107. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.4034086
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