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The Future in a Crowd's Wisdom

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This post was provided by Ari Popper, President, BrainJuicer NA, ari.popper@brainjuicer.com

This past week, an article in the NYTimes: Betting on the Odds, by Steve Lohr, caught our eye.

The article reveals interesting developments:

"Fortune 500 companies are using prediction markets to improve forecasting, reduce risk and accelerate innovation by tapping into the collective wisdom of the work force...For years, public prediction markets have been used for politics, like the Iowa Electronic Markets and Intrade, where buyers and sellers bet on which candidate will win a particular race. And there are prediction markets where people place bets on news events (Hubdub, among others), video game sales (simExchange) or movie box-office receipts (Hollywood Stock Exchange)."

James Surowiki's fantastic book The Wisdom of Crowds inspired us to create an award winning market research methodology for concept screening that embraces and leverages the "wisdom of crowds".

Companies gain real value in the "fuzzy front end" of the innovation funnel when they employ this methodology with consumers. Traditional methodologies for concept screening in the front end of innovation can deliver less than expository results for what is often a costly and time consuming investment. We conduct "predictive market" studies with consumers to help marketers, innovation and NPD teams unlock and inject "wisdom of crowds" into their decision making processes. With such a high percentage of new products failing, predictive markets are proving to be a remarkable way for companies to proceed confidently and quickly at the Front End to accelerate and improve their innovation process.

We are thrilled to see predictive markets methodologies gaining traction. We look forward to continue stimulating dialog at the Front End of Innovation Conference about this exciting approach to concept screening.

Posted by Ari Popper, President, BrainJuicer NA, ari.popper@brainjuicer.com

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