Thomson Reuters

Gaining customer-driven insights via the crowd

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Thomson Reuters, a multinational media company, wanted to improve its Web of Knowledge online tool through customer-driven product insights. Experience of traditional customer research had proven to be slow, costly and often ineffective. With InnoCentive, the company found an approach that led from insights to a functioning prototype application for the Web of Knowledge product within a few months.

Run as a Two-Step Challenge program, the first Challenge captured the crowd’s creative use cases for the Thomson Reuters Web of KnowledgeSM product and revealed data visualization to be a key improvement. The second Challenge was able to deliver an elegant app that could be tested and scaled quickly.

“By engaging with expert technologists in the scholarly community, we are able to expand the way users interact with the data in the Web of Knowledge.”

Gordon Macomber
Managing Director, Thomson Reuters Scholarly and Scientific Research

The Challenge

  • Seeking authentic customer feedback and actionable solutions is a struggle with traditional consumer research tools.
  • Thomson Reuters wanted direct insights that were unfiltered, but structured enough to be useful and actionable.

The Solutions

  • Thomson Reuters used InnoCentive in a two-stage program to get customer-driven product insights, followed by solutions around those insights.
  • An Ideation Challenge provided an open call for ideas for how to improve their product; this was followed by a challenge to build the winning suggestion.
  • The winning solution was a data visualization application, in the form of elegant and well documented code written in Java from a solver in Hungary.

The Results

  • There were 8,292 visits to the challenge and over 900 participants in the challenge.
  • TThis solution could be implemented quickly without a heavy demand on in-house resources – and it was perfectly suited to specification, due to a carefully crafted challenge design.
  • InnoCentive’s services not only allowed Thomson Reuters to achieve their goals, but also enabled the delivery of the winning insight by returning this problem to the crowd.

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