Facial recognition and content marketing – the eyes don’t lie

One outcome of the growth in content marketing is the question of whether, or how much, people trust it. To help provide some answers, the BBC’s new content-marketing division Storyworks has divulged some interesting new research.

Storyworks, which launched last year, spoke to Digiday about how it uses facial recognition technology to gauge consumer response.

It asked subjects to look at Storyworks campaigns for clients including HSBC and Dassault while specialist software monitored their faces via a webcam for changes of expression. Emotions it could interpret included sadness, puzzlement, happiness, fear, rejection and surprise.

The research highlighted the fact that people felt better when the branding was most obvious.

Without doubt facial recognition is an good way of understanding consumer reaction. The point the BBC makes is that it is perhaps better than measuring clicks and impressions. True, but only if you analyse everybody who is looking at the content.

They somehow managed to get 5,000 people to reveal their inner thoughts, but you wonder how they convinced them to switch on their webcams.

Seeing as many regulators want to make native advertising more transparent, it should come as a relief that consumers seems to prefer this way, too.

AOL to buy into Taboola

For those of a certain age, it is impossible to see the letters AOL and not recall the CDs offering software and internet hosting back in the early days of the 21st century. For others, it is best known for its merger with Time Warner, described by some as the worst deal in history.

Now, the Verizon-owned company is looking at buying a stake in sharing platform Taboola. 

As part of the new partnership, Taboola will distribute links on AOL properties, including AOL.com, TechCrunch, Engadget and the Huffington Post.


The eyes don’t lie: facial recognition and content marketing¬†appears in Content24, the online magazine for London content-marketing agency FirstWord.

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