KPIs for Emotions?

Artificial intelligence (AI) is a hot topic this year already with Apple recently buying a startup that asseses emotions by reading facial expressions as consumers respond to marketing campaigns.

In a similar way to how one would read the facial expressions of someone sitting across from them to understand what they "mean" (remember we speak more about what we think with non-verbal indicators than we do with actual words), San Diego-based Emotient "delivers insights in the form of three key performance indicators (KPIs):

Attention - Is your advertising or product getting noticed?
Engagement - Are people responding emotionally?
Sentiment - Are they showing positive, negative or no emotion?

These insights, according to the company's website, add business value to advertising, media, consumer packaged goods and other industries. By learning how a consumer is reacting to a brand's marketing campaigns (video, specifically, in this case), a company can, theoretically, tweak the messaging in real-time or use the insights for emotion-driven marketing. Similar to how marketers currently use behavior data to segment audiences, brands can test one promotion or message with customers who had postiive facial expressions when viewing the last campaign and a different promotion or message to someone who viewed them negatively.

This type of technology certainly comes with privacy concerns (here's a great article worth exploring), but the brand benefits are outstanding. Alongside user profile info, a brand would be able to essentially tie KPIs for different campaigns with the person's sentiment, engagement and attention (e.g. they bought when they reacted positively to a video campaign and started engaging with other brand messaging more often as a result) - with so many testing situations stemming as the result of those insights. 

(Photo credit: Emotient)