Computer Vision Search: How Can Brands “See” Invisible Fan Photos?

The Power of Skittles: One home-based cookie business shares the fun design idea of another cookie baker who inspires her. How many times will the Skittles logo and packaging be shared without cookie fans feeling like they are advertising?

Yummy.

Check out the Skittles cookies that just popped up in my Facebook News Feed. There are no actual Skittles fruit candies in the cookies — though I personally think that would be an improvement. The Skittles logo and brand packaging are what’s celebrated here.

This is a classic case of a passionate unpaid brand ambassador sharing her love for her favorite candy. But what’s fascinating from a marketing perspective is that nowhere in the original photo from Karen’s Cookies is there any mention of Skittles. We just see them — in super duper enlarged form — and its famous advertising slogan “Taste the Rainbow.”

When the picture is shared by another mom-owned cookie business, Sinful Squares, Skittles are mentioned in the caption. If Skittles were to do a traditional text search for all its brand photos on Facebook, it would easily find the second photo, but never see the first (the more important one since Karen is the “pioneer” advocate).

With computer vision, it is possible for brands to “see” what’s inside of the billions of photos shared on Facebook, which just announced a major redesign of its News Feed to make its picture display larger and more prominent.

Unless there is a special contest or incentive, most consumers don’t bother to tag pictures with the names of brands or products. They genuinely love their favorite brands, for sure, but it seems like “work” or an artificial gesture to type in the names.

A similar case is this viral photo of an amazing wooden sculpture of Pearl Drums. Very few people bother to mention the “Pearl” name when they share this pic with their social networks.

Tree Trunk Music — This rustic tribute to Pearl Drums has made a huge splash on Facebook.

Brands interested in finding their true number of social network ambassadors need to consider these untagged photos that won’t show up in a traditional search.  Pongr’s computer vision technology can be used as a visual search engine for brands to find their logos, packaging and products in photos shared across the Web.

Have you seen any brands make any fun cameos in your friends’ photos lately?

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(Pongr’s computer vision technology and mobile Photo Response Marketing platform helps brands turn any of their existing logos, CPGs, visual media and advertisements into an always-on direct response program – and integrates brand photo contests to their CRM. Check out Our Story.)

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