Is Social Computing in Product Development Still Growing?

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How are social computing technologies like blogs, wikis, portals, social media sites, idea management sites, communities, and others helping companies develop better products? How has it changed over the last several years our industry has learned more? We would like to hear from you, so please take 5-10 minutes to fill out a quick survey.

My Belief

I am on the record saying I believe the use of social computing techniques in product development is inevitable. To me, there is an obvious benefit of pairing the “team sports” of innovation and product development with technology that helps teams better share information (within the team, with other experts, and with customers).

Why What I Believe Doesn’t Really Matter

So what’s happening? You tell me. I don’t have a crystal ball, I rely on research to understand what is happening. That is why I need your help.

Please take our survey on Social Product Innovation and Product Development now!

I have worked with innovation consulting firm Kalypso over last two years on their social product innovation research and we are refreshing the information again this year. What I can share are some findings from the last two studies, and then share the results of this year’s survey when they are available.

In 2011 (see graphic):

  • About 1/3 of the companies surveyed (34%) said they planned to increase the use of social computing “significantly”
  • Another 59% said they would increase “somewhat”
  • A total of 93% indicated they were planning to increase the use of social computing in product innovation, product development, and product management
  • No respondents indicated they would decrease even somewhat
  • We did see, however, that some companies may be taking a step back to re-plan

The results in 2010 were very similar, showing companies planned to grow the use of social computing between 2010 and 2011. There is a lot more to learn from the joint studies, Kalypso viewpoints, and Tech-Clarity research. Here are some links for you to learn more:

Predictions for Social Product Innovation in 2012 (Kalypso Site)

Video: Using Social Media to Drive New Product Innovation (Amy Kenly of Kalypso From Social Slam 2012)

Social Business Collaboration and the Product Lifecycle (Tech-Clarity Research Report)

Why Does Facebook Fail for Product Development (and how to fix it) (Clarity on PLM)