Thomson Reuters announced something last week that I cannot think of any other vendor having done in the legal industry – the launch of a social network tied exclusively to a group of products. The Thomson Reuters Elite Community, as it is called, will serve as a platform for customers of its Elite group of products to connect with each other in order to share ideas and ask questions. It is slated to go live in July.
The new community was announced by Elite President Cary Burch at the conclusion of the keynote session at last week’s Vantage 2013 Elite user conference in Miami. The keynote session was a glitzy, hour-long affair with a series of talks by Elite executives backed by an over-the-top display of multimedia. Even so, until that point in the keynote, nothing anyone said had elicited more than polite clapping from the room packed with several hundred law firm C-suite-ers. However, when Burch announced the imminent launch of the community, the room broke into spontaneous applause and cheers.
Apparently, their response suggests, this is something Elite customers wanted. Later, several attendees told me that, indeed, they looked forward to the community as a way to connect with other Elite users worldwide and share advice and knowledge about the products.
Screenshots of the community show an interface with elements reminiscent of LinkedIn and Facebook. Users will set up profiles and upload photos of themselves. When they log in, they will come to a page showing their “wall,” displaying their posts as well as the groups and subjects they follow. As with other social networks, users will be able to connect with one another through invitations.
Users will be able to join product- and region-specific user groups, as well as to follow discussions by their subjects. The idea is that, through these groups, users will exchange ideas and best practices. The community will also provide company updates and access to events such as webinars and chats.
Elite customers will be able to access the community through the Elite customer portal.
See also my earlier post from the Vantage conference: Thomson Reuters Elite Readies Launch of WorkSpace.
By way of disclosure, please note that Elite paid for my airfare and lodging to attend the Miami conference. The above is not intended to be an endorsement of any Elite product but rather a report of what I learned.