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Launching a New Social Network onto the Mass Market: Barriers to the Adoption of Digital Communication Innovation

Student: Aleksandra Chuprakova

Supervisor: Oleg Karasev

Faculty: Faculty of Communications, Media, and Design

Educational Programme: Advertising and Public Relations (Bachelor)

Year of Graduation: 2021

Since the ultimate success and long-term viability of online social networks depend on their cumulative use, the main practical challenge in the early development of a digital communication product remains increasing the number of users and deepening their social integration. Placing this product within the research field of Rogers' diffusion theory of innovation, we problematise the process of new social network adoption through the concept of chasm in the priority user segments of innovators and the early majority. Delayed or rejected adoption of an innovative product is conceptualised in terms of innovation resistance theory (IRT). The resistance-communication-acceptance (RCA) model is used to describe the acceptance process of a digital communication innovation, highlighting the barriers of basic resistance and offering practical recommendations for bringing a new social network to the mass market.

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