A U.K-based company called Vyking has created a new form of video advertising, specializing in the use of artificial intelligence to gauge emotion. This means that video viewers may now be advertised according to their facial movements and reactions, giving marketers more insight into their target audience.
Vyking is composed of software developers with more than 100 years of combined experience, as well as seasoned digital advertising professionals. The company has developed Emotion, a new technology that can be deployed and operated though any existing webcam.
Once it's in use, Emotion analyzes micro-expressions on the faces of its subjects in response to what they're viewing. From here, the technology measures and classifies the emotional responses, condensing all of the information onto an easy-to-read dashboard for advertisers. Additionally, Emotion can detect age, gender and ethnicity.
Specific emotional states can supposedly be read by Emotion, including elation, anger, concentration and surprise. Eye retention can even be gauged by Emotion, giving users insight into how visually pleasing their ads are.
The end result of all of these statistics is data - enough data for video advertisers to "pinpoint high engagement moments and optimize creative processes," according to Vyking.
Additionally, Vyking has now made Emotion readily available to clients who want to deploy it on mobile devices. Similar to the desktop version, Emotion's mobile edition takes advantage of the existing camera on devices, such as smartphones.
"We understand the importance of being able to track engagement across devices and in changing physical environments," Vyking writes on its website.
For convenience, Emotion's API allows users to add emotion and engagement analytics into their existing data platforms. This means that third party applications can be used to track consumers' emotional engagement while interacting with digital content.
While it may all feel a bit invasive in terms of privacy, Vyking CEO and Co-Founder Matthew Klimpke told TechCrunch that his company isn't out to spy on consumers. Instead, he specifies that Vyking's program is opt-in, meaning Emotion won't hijack a webcam at random and begin storing user images.
Vyking, which is based in London, also has a video advertising branch that specifically works with companies looking to reach consumers through this form of digital marketing.