In today’s age of information overload, having the right market intelligence tool can be the difference between financial success or fallout. Comprehensive market intelligence tools allow you to spend less time on repetitive manual tasks and more time on higher-level analysis and strategy—in turn giving you the competitive advantage for optimal performance. 

Below, we examine Factiva and Crayon, two tools that are designed to aid market intelligence efforts through slightly different value offerings. We will also compare both with AlphaSense, to show how our platform fills in the gaps and meets all of your business research needs. 

We will use the following criteria for our comparison:

  • Features 
  • Reviews and ratings
  • Pricing

First, here’s a quick overview of each platform:

Overview

Factiva

Factiva is a global news search engine that monitors companies and gives users access to business intelligence and research insights. It’s owned by Dow Jones & Company, a subsidiary company of News Corp. 

Access to Factiva gives users a massive archive of over 33,000 premium trusted sources, including global newspapers, magazines, reports, publications (such as The New York Times, The Financial Times, Reuters, and the Wall Street Journal). 

Factiva is a rich source of business news, trade reports, press releases, historical equity stock quotes, market indexes, and journals. Moreover, it can provide users with government data, information on potential global trends, politics, and events.

Factiva users can take advantage of the database to perform business functions such as:

  • Conducting competitive intelligence
  • Data mining and advanced analytics 
  • Corporate communications and media monitoring
  • Sales intelligence and business development
  • Application development
  • Customer engagement and marketing 
  • Conducting research and strategy

Factiva provides access to public and private company profiles, financial data, and documents—while making it easy for users to share this information internally. The platform also allows users to perform advanced searches and filter information using smart indexing tools. 

Factiva’s direct relationship with Reuters and Dow Jones & Company makes it a valuable tool for companies looking for a media intelligence tool. It helps users track the latest news updates in specific industries or companies and provides access to a wide breadth of quality media content. 

However, Factiva has significant limitations in its content sources and may not be suitable for users looking for a full-scale research solution. Without access to premium and proprietary content sets like broker reports or expert transcripts, it can be challenging to gain a complete view of a market, industry, or trend. Additionally, Factiva does not utilize artificial intelligence (AI) in its platform, features that are often instrumental in saving time and money and accelerating research practices.

Factiva’s key use cases include:

  • Media monitoring and corporate communications
  • Sales funnels and business development
  • Competitive intelligence
  • Application development
  • Advanced analytics and data mining
  • Business development and sales intelligence
  • Customer engagement and marketing 

Factiva Pros

  • Has access to over 33,000 news archives and sources worldwide
  • Great for media monitoring and intelligence
  • Supports third-party integrations and APIs
  • Supports collaborations and newsletters
  • Customizable dashboard and alerts
  • Robust search and filtering tools
  • Trend tracking and news sentiment analysis

Factiva Cons:

  • Sometimes displays duplicate news and report entries
  • Does not support simultaneous logins
  • Links created inside the Factiva platform cannot be accessed outside of it
  • Lacks AI search capability to optimize searches
  • No broker research, expert calls, or ESG reports available
  • Data is not always accurate
  • Functions more as a media intelligence tool, not a robust market intelligence tool

Crayon

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Crayon is a competitive intelligence tool that businesses can use to track the digital footprint of their competitors, as well as their marketing, product launches, and pricing. Crayon collects insights from both online and offline sources, curating and storing them in an indexed and searchable format.

Crayon gathers the following key competitor data points:

  • Market strategy
  • Web and online positioning, including branding and web copy
  • Product packaging strategies
  • Product pricing strategies
  • Customer support and reviews
  • Public relations, news, and events
  • Partners and investors
  • Content and media strategies
  • Human resource strategies
  • Sales enablement

This data is gathered from website updates, SEC filings, customer reviews, support documents, and other publicly available sources. Crayon then utilizes advanced artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) functionality to capture and curate essential information and generate actionable insights, saving precious time on research and analysis.

Crayon provides both real-time data and historical analysis of your competitors, allowing you to track their evolution over time. Moreover, Crayon is designed to seamlessly integrate into your workflow, allowing team members to receive alerts, newsletters, and relevant data across Slack, Salesforce, Microsoft Teams, and other internal tools. 

Although many companies across industries can use Crayon’s platform to keep up with market trends, drive better sales, and reduce customer churn, this platform has several important limitations.

Because Crayon still uses human analysts for data processing, scalability is a challenge. Therefore, if you have a large amount of competitors to track, or if your competitors keep shifting, Crayon may not be the right tool for you. 

Crayon also lacks certain critical data sources that are necessary for full-scale market research, as it only provides access to public low-value data and functions primarily as a web listening tool. This means it has limited usage outside of competitive intelligence. Finally, though Crayon has AI capabilities, they are much less robust than that of their competitors.

Crayon Pros

  • Automated real-time alerts
  • Can offer more personalized competitor insights
  • Includes helpful win/loss analysis tools
  • Cutting-edge AI and ML capabilities for data research
  • Offers in-depth analytics and metrics 
  • Integrates with multiple tools, including Slack and Microsoft Teams
  • Collects info from both online and offline sources
  • Custom reports and battlecards
  • Intuitive and navigable platform

Crayon Cons

  • No expert call library
  • Less scalable than similar tools due to use of human analysts for data processing
  • More error-prone due to use of human analysts
  • No way to track peers’ R&D intelligence on the platform
  • No SEC filings, financial reports, and earnings estimates 
  • No industry-specific reports or thought leadership
  • No broker research
  • Content hosted outside its platform; it only provides URL links 
  • Lacks advanced search capabilities, such as keyword and synonym recognition, thematic search, and sentiment analysis
  • Generative AI is limited to auto-summarizing news articles
  • Not well-suited for users with many competitors or whose competitive landscapes are frequently changing

AlphaSense

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AlphaSense is a secure, all-in-one market intelligence and generative AI platform built for robust financial and market research. This tool is ideal for firms looking to accelerate research, enhance productivity, and gain a competitive edge using AI and automation. 

Consistently ranked as an industry leader by TrustRadius and G2, AlphaSense was also recognized by Forbes as a top 50 AI company in 2023.  

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Here’s how AlphaSense helps you extract insights and access both high-value internal and external content with the power of artificial intelligence—all in one single platform. 

Extensive Out-of-the-Box Content Library

AlphaSense comes equipped with an extensive collection of external market intelligence and research that comprises over 10,000+ private, public, premium, and proprietary data sources. Our platform is purpose-built to speed up your team’s access to information on all the relevant topics and companies driving your market.

Our external content sources include news wires, trade journals, and SEC and global filings. Besides that, AlphaSense also gives users access to two proprietary and premium content offerings. These are:

  • Expert Insights – 35,000+ expert transcripts featuring one-on-one calls with competitors, customers, professionals, industry experts, and former and current executives. You can also request bespoke 1:1 expert calls for less.
  • Wall Street Insights® – A collection of broker research from Wall Street’s leading firms, covering global sector themes, industries, and companies from 1,000+ sell-side and independent firms, available within the AlphaSense platform. Research professionals can even preview the contents of a broker report, saving them wasted time and money on potentially fruitless research.

In addition to these sources, AlphaSense enables you to upload, index, and search through your own content. That includes:

  • Internal research, notes, and presentations
  • Reports from industry and market intelligence providers
  • Newsletters, web pages, and RSS feeds
  • Meeting and conference notes

AI Search & Summarization Technology

AlphaSense comes with the following industry-leading AI capabilities:

Smart Synonyms™

Smart synonyms product

Smart Synonyms™ is a proprietary AlphaSense feature that uses AI technology to recognize both the keyword and search intent behind any query. 

AlphaSense uses advanced algorithms to eliminate noise from your search (i.e., content with matching keywords but ultimately irrelevant to your search objective) and leverages variations in language to pinpoint the exact information you need.  

Sentiment Analysis

Sentiment analysis, a natural language processing (NLP)-based feature, parses through content and identifies nuances in the tone and subjective meaning of text. It then uses color coding to help readers identify the document’s positive, negative, and neutral sentiments.

This technology assigns each search term a numerical sentiment change score to help users track any slight change in market sentiments across time. Users can take advantage of it to make better-informed investment decisions and improve their risk management strategies. 

Generative AI

smart summaries for companies

Unlike other consumer-grade generative AI (genAI) tools trained on publicly available data, AlphaSense takes an entirely different approach. Our industry-leading suite of generative AI tools is purpose-built to deliver business-grade insights and leans on 10+ years of AI tech development. Our proprietary AlphaSense Large Language Model (ASLLM)—trained specifically on business and financial data—matches or beats the leading third-party LLMs over 90% of the time. 

Our suite of tools currently includes:

  • Smart Summaries – this feature allows you to glean instant earnings insights—reducing time spent on research during earnings season, quickly capture company outlook, and generate an expert-approved SWOT analysis straight from former competitors, partners, and employees
  • Enterprise Intelligence – a first-of-its-kind offering that delivers AlphaSense’s AI-powered search and summarization capabilities to customers’ internal organizational knowledge.
  • AlphaSense Assistant (in beta) – a generative AI chat experience that transforms how users can extract insights from hundreds of millions of premium content sources 

Integration Capabilities

Even the best companies fall victim to silos. But forward-thinking organizations know to avoid this pitfall by leveraging the advanced collaborative tools found in modern market intelligence platforms.

Seamlessly Integrate with Other Tools

AlphaSense works with the apps and tools you already use to help you be more productive with less effort. Connect with integrations to Box, Sharepoint, OneNote, or leverage our API suite to securely upload your proprietary content.

APIs

API capabilities provided by your market intelligence platform allow you to build your own tools to get maximum ROI from the content sources you can now access. For example, AlphaSense offers the following APIs for users to leverage our proprietary technology and content across other parts of their strategies:

  • Alert Feed API: Real-time data feed based on saved searches & alerts.
  • Search API: Solution that provides real-time, programmatic access to AlphaSense search infrastructure to query and filter the database of documents from a third party domain.
  • Ingestion API: Integration, processing, and enrichment capabilities for internal or custom content sets.
  • AI API: Enrichment capabilities that enable company recognition, sentiment, themes and KPI services for internal content.

Monitoring, Analysis, and Collaboration Tools

AlphaSense is designed to help users find insights faster. In order to do that, we offer a number of tools that extend beyond search and summarization to help users accelerate research tasks.  

  • Customizable Dashboards create a centralized information hub for monitoring key companies and themes, while tailored real-time alerts provide real-time updates.
  • Smart Alerts monitor the most important themes, companies and market updates with weekly, daily, or real-time alerts.
  • Notebook+ and commenting features increase collaboration and help teams manage and share insights more effectively. Notebook+ also includes templates that streamline the process of creating deliverables.
  • Table Tools allow you to streamline your quantitative analysis by enabling you to export modeled time-series data on company financials.
  • Image Search allows you to discover insights buried in charts to quickly capture data without reading through pages of documents.
  • Snippet Explorer allows you to effortlessly look at any topic or theme and all its historical mentions in a single view.
  • Our Black-lining feature allows you to automatically identify any QoQ changes in SEC filings
  • Automated Monitoring allows you to set up real-time alerts that send instant updates on any relevant market movements, news, emerging trends, and competitor activities. We also generate snapshots of companies and topics regularly that keep you ahead of the curve with actionable insights.

AlphaSense Pros

  • Extensive content database that spans the four key perspectives, including broker research, expert calls, company documents, news & regulatory sites.
  • Incorporates AI search technology, machine learning, and sentiment analysis
  • Generative AI features, like Smart Summaries, for earnings and image search
  • Automated and customizable alerts
  • All-in-one research platform
  • User-friendly interface
  • Internal messaging and collaboration features
  • Support for APIs and integrations
  • Supports enterprise-level organizations and teams
  • Enterprise-grade data production complying with global security standards
  • Excellent customer support team, including 24/7 chat with product specialists, a live Help button on the website, and regular live AlphaSense Education webinars

AlphaSense Cons

  • Visualization tools are limited at this time
  • Collaboration tools are limited to users with AlphaSense licenses

Reviews and Ratings 

Factiva

Rating: 4.2 out of 5 on G2, 7.5 out of 10 on TrustRadius

Popular positives:

  • Access to real-time data 
  • Access to over 33,000+ data sources
  • Web design and app development features
  • Intuitive interface and great customer support

Popular negatives:

  • Duplicate news reports 
  • No direct links to some data source
  • Potential for outdated data sources
  • May be slower than other similar solutions.

Crayon

Rating: 4.6 out of 5 on G2, 7.0 out of 10 on TrustRadius

Popular positives:

  • Exceptional automated insights
  • Supports sharing of boards and competitive intelligence across teams
  • Easy to build battlecard templates
  • Supports multiple integrations
  • Dedicated customer support

Popular negatives:

  • Does not track LinkedIn
  • Content is not easily downloadable
  • Crayon’s AI may not pick up all public data available on a competitor

AlphaSense

Rating: 4.8 out of 5 on G2, 9.4 out of 10 on TrustRadius

Popular positives:

  • Comprehensive data and analysis on public and private markets
  • Real-time data availability
  • Easy-to-find relevant and high-quality results
  • Intuitive interface and great customer support
  • Smart AI-powered search leads to quicker, more accurate insights

Popular negatives:

  • Visualization tools are limited to financial data at this time
  • Lack of collaborative tools for knowledge management

Pricing

Factiva

As per third-party sources, Factiva plans start at about $3,000-5,000.

Crayon

According to third-party sources, Crayon starts at about $15,000 per year per user with no free tier or freemium options. Crayon’s pricing may also scale up as the number of competitors you need to track increases.

AlphaSense

For AlphaSense, you can pay by the enterprise or seat, depending on your unique business needs. Contact us for more information on pricing options, or start a free 2-week trial here.

A Better Alternative to Factiva and Crayon?

Crayon and Factiva are excellent research tools for users looking for a web listening tool, or who only need a tool for competitive intelligence. 

But for deeper market research and analysis, both Factiva and Crayon fall short. If you are looking for a platform that provides access to proprietary and premium content sets, and comes equipped with powerful AI search functionality, AlphaSense is the clear choice. 

Only AlphaSense curates content from all four key perspectives of market research—indexed, searchable, and available all in one place. AlphaSense’s AI is significantly more robust, with features such as sentiment analysis, generative AI, synonym recognition, and more.

When considering a tool for your market intelligence needs, AlphaSense may be the best choice for you if:

  • You want a platform that serves your entire organization to meet various strategic goals, and not just competitive intelligence and web listening.
  • You prefer a platform that eliminates tedious and manual research techniques while surfacing real-time insights relevant to your needs.
  • You want to save precious research time and dedicate it to deeper analysis and strategic planning.
  • You want access to an expansive content universe of proprietary, premium, private, and public content unavailable to many of your peers.
  • You want a platform that keeps you updated on all critical information, with customizable real-time alerts, watchlists, and dashboards.
  • You are looking for a platform purpose-built for an enterprise-level organization.