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Crossing the Chasm: Marketing and Selling High-Tech Products to Mainstream Customers Paperback – July 25, 2006

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Geoffrey A. Moore is the author of Escape Velocity, Inside the Tornado, and Living on the Fault Line.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 227 pages
  • Publisher: HarperBusiness; Revised edition (August 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060517123
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060517120
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.6 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (74 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #70,406 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Managing Director, Geoffrey Moore Consulting
Venture Partner, Mohr Davidow Ventures
Chairman Emeritus, TCG Advisors, The Chasm Institute and The Chasm Group
Member of the Board of Directors, Akamai Technologies and several pre-IPO Companies


Geoffrey Moore is an author, speaker and business advisor to many of the leading companies in the high-tech sector, including Cisco, Cognizant, Compuware, HP, Microsoft, SAP, and Yahoo!.

Geoffrey divides his time between consulting on strategy and transformation challenges with senior executives and speaking internationally on those same topics. His latest book Crossing the Chasm the Third Edition is Moore's book for business leaders in the high-tech sector. This third edition brings Moore's classic work up to date with dozens of new examples of successes and failures, new strategies for marketing in the digital world, and Moore's most current insights and findings. Moore has written numerous other books including Escape Velocity, Moore's sixth book for business leaders in the high-tech sector. Inside the Tornado addresses the challenges faced by management when competing in hyper-growth markets and those faced by investors when managing a high-tech stock portfolio (The Gorilla Game). The two additional books both address the organizational challenges faced by established enterprises, in one case posed by the volatility of the technology sector overall (Living on the Fault Line), in the other by the need to reignite innovation in mature franchises (Dealing with Darwin). Escape Velocity rounds out these efforts in service to established enterprises by laying out a comprehensive program for engaging with next-generation trends while maintaining their core franchises.

Moore is an active public speaker who gives between 30 and 60 speeches per year, split roughly evenly between industry events and company-specific meetings. His speaking practice is global, addressing a spectrum of topics of interest to the high-tech sector, including high-tech market dynamics, business strategies, innovation, organizational development, and industry futures.

Earlier in his career, he was a principal and partner at Regis McKenna, Inc., a leading high tech marketing strategy and communications company, and for the decade prior, a sales and marketing executive in the software industry. He has a bachelor's degree from Stanford and a doctorate from the University of Washington, both in English Literature.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Lars Bergstrom VINE VOICE on March 20, 2004
Format: Paperback
Long established as a classic, the drawing depicting the different classes of customers and their adoption rates are commonly used in the industry. I personally thought I already understood it, just from osmosis. However, reading the book taught me more about the characteristics of those customers, how you gain penetration into their markets, and most importantly how you manage a team and produce a product into those markets.
There are also lessons in there about establishing a beachhead and how to choose your target customer that dovetail nicely into some more modern work around persona identification in software development and the need to identify just one target persona for your application at a time. This is a great marketing book -- even if some of the specific company examples are somewhat dated -- whose concepts readily translate into not only management but directly into product development and vision.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Jennifer McLean on December 19, 2006
Format: Paperback
This is the book that launched my career in technology and drove me to establish a more strategic approach to marketing and business. Geoffrey Moore was ahead of his time and offers priceless information on how to stand back and re-evaluate your market approach. If you know nothing about business strategy or marketing OR you consider yourself an expert, Moore's models stand the test of time and give you the tools you need to not only do your job but offers the insights that can help build consensus within a company. Apply these models to your corporate and product strategy; use it as a point of discussion with other senior executives to FINALLY drive a coherent strategy. This book changed they way I think about the business of technology it will for you too.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on November 3, 2006
Format: Paperback
I am a senior product manager and found most of the concepts very relevant. In particular I was impressed by the fact that we have to target a focused customer segment to initially establish the product and then branch out to target a wider customer segment. But it requires lot of self-discipline. The instinct is to throw a dart in 100 different directions and hope that it will stick. Similarly in marketing we tend to market our product in different segments and hope that we will be successful in one of the segments.

Bottom-line...A great read, but implementation is a challenge.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Amit Deshpande on December 27, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The author's emphasis is on distinguishing between the selling and marketing tactics for the early innovators versus the mainstream customers. There is a chasm between the innovators and mainstream market and the author dedicates the book outlining the various steps a high tech company should perform to successfully navigate through the chasm.

Some key points and lessons learned:

- It is important to maintain momentum in order to create a bandwagon effect that makes it natural for the next group to want to buy in.

- Early adopters want a change agent while the early majority looks for productivity improvement for existing operations - they want an evolution not revolution.

- Vapor vare should be avoided during chasm crossing - Vapor vare is pre-announcing and pre-marketing a product which still requires significant development.

- Resistance is a function of inertia growing out of the commitment to the status quo, fear of risk or lack of compelling reason to buy.

- Crossing the chasm requires moving from an environment of support among visionaries back into one of skepticism among pragmatists. It means that moving from product related issues to unfamiliar ground of market oriented issues AND moving from the familiar audience of like minded specialist to uninterested generalist.

-It is the market centric value system - supplemented ( but not superseded ) by the product centric - One that must be the basis for the value profile of the target customers when crossing the chasm.

-Elevator Speech Template
1. For (target customers - beachhead segment only)
2. Who are dissatisfied with (the current market alternative)
3. Our product is a (new product category)
4.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By BP on June 25, 2009
Format: Paperback
This business book captures in a few pages my over arching outlook on how change happens in the world (and just so happens to be a good way to approach launching high tech innovations).

I refer to it often as a baseline for clients and anyone I am talking to to understand the process they are about to embark upon. This book came out a long time before Malcolm Gladwell popularized similar ideas in The Tipping Point.

I recommend it highly to all my clients so we can agree to speak the same language about product development and the world we are trying to launch a product or change initiative into.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By N. Harshbarger on November 2, 2006
Format: Paperback
I found the information provided by Mr. Moore to be very informative and usable by anyone trying to grow a new product and company in today's business environment. It makes you think about how best to strategically position your product to enter the larger main-stream market. I have used the information in this book at two different start-up companies. It is worth your time!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Ulas Tuerkmen on July 16, 2013
Format: Paperback
Crossing the Chasm is referenced by pretty much every book on startups
out there, and rightly so. Geoffrey Moore looks at the problem of
creating a sustainable company from an initial technology and vision
from a marketing perspective, which is usually lacking in new
enterprises with an idea and some venture money. The author mentions
in the introduction that some companies have Crossing the Chasm as
required reading, which makes a lot of sense, because the book
considers the complete enterprise, and not just the marketing
department, in its discussion of how to cross the chasm.

So what is the chasm? Technology wants you to change, and people
respond differently to this demand. The technology adoption lifecycle
is a curve that classifies people based on their response, from
innovators who try out everything to see whether they work, to
visionaries (also called early majority) who expect quantum leaps from
new technology, to pragmatists who want to make sure they get their
money's worth, to conservatives who switch to a new technology only
when they have to. Moore urges the reader not to think that the
transition of a technology company's marketing strategy from one
segment to the other is necessarily fluid and without existential
risks. There are gaps between each segment, but the one between
visionaries and pragmatists is the widest one, with many a promising
company having fallen there and not managed to get back up. Even if a
company has successfully marketed to the innovators and visionaries,
becoming sustainable requires getting a foothold in the pragmatist
segment, which in turn requires the mentality of the whole company to
change.
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