Using do-it-yourself practitioners as lead users: A case study on the hair care industry

Jaesik Hahn, Amy Marconnet, Tahira Reid

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


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.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number101107
JournalJournal of Mechanical Design
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design


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