Marketers who launch innovative products need to identify consumers who are willing to learn about, buy, and use these innovations. To optimize marketing campaigns, practitioners need to know the characteristics of this key segment in the diffusion process. Previous research, however, provides confounding results about antecedents of innovativeness because of two limitations: (1) previous studies have conceptualized innovativeness on different levels of abstraction (2) previous studies have not taken into account the influence of the product category. The present paper suggests a conceptual framework to overcome these shortcomings. Based on this framework, the paper suggests a theoretically founded cognitive model of domain-specific innovativeness for a product category with a utilitarian benefit. This model is empirically tested in the field of automotive interior. To this end, 521 German car drivers were surveyed. The results of structural equation modeling show that domain-specific innovativeness for utilitarian products is mainly influenced by specific need for cognition, special interest media usage and domain-specific opinion leadership.Domain-specific innovativeness Need for cognition Media usage Automotive industry Utilitarian benefit
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