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For CIOs

Sourcing Innovation From Crowds

December 10, 2008


  • By Chris Townsend
  • with Navi Radjou,
  • Josh Bernoff,
  • Gil Yehuda,
  • Christopher Andrews,
  • Edward Radcliffe

Why Read This Report

Crowdsourcing has become a media darling — which, rather paradoxically, represents a major threat to the very innovation vendors that market it. Why? Because trendiness breeds misinformation, confusion, and poorly reasoned use cases — making enterprises increasingly skeptical of crowdsourcing's value. The lesson for vendors: Honest-to-goodness customer education and business value supersede super-cool features and snazzy marketing tactics as winning market strategies. Rather than hyping it, vendors must help enterprises focus on four critical aspects of crowdsourcing — people, objectives, strategy, and technology, in that order. The heavy lifting of customer education is the only way to generate innovation value in each engagement and with it the word-of-mouth buzz that builds a strong brand and creates snowballing market share.

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