Imotion Analytics, a startup based in Barcelona created in 2014 from the Polytechnic University of Catalonia, aims to change the way retail businesses work by taking advantage of new technologies and analyzing customers expressions during their experience, whether shopping in a store or staying at a hotel.

According to the company, its team includes experts in software development, neuromarketing, biometric analysis and marketing. All of these ingredients lead to what imotions Analytics offers: a comprehensive study of customer behavior in psychical spaces.

The process is distilled into four main steps. First, borrowing from the IoT concept, the installation of sensors that collect video and infrared data. Then comes an initial local processing with a machine installed on-site. The third step goes to the cloud, where the company’s algorithms based on Machine Learning obtain the useful data. Lastly, reports, alerts and KPIs are generated and sent to the respective clients so they can optimize their businesses.

This kind of optimization is not necessarily new. Indeed, the IoT and Big Data boom has opened the path for many companies who offer similar services through sensor installation and the sort. However, an extra layer Imotion Analytics offers is the ability to analyze purchase behavior and satisfaction by identifying emotions through facial recognition.

The retail sector is already an aggressively competitive space, so these kinds of technologies will become essential for winning over the competition. Eventually, they might even be standard requirements for profitability. A common strategy is the use of loyalty programs, which capitalize on a satisfied customer. That way, they can improve the chances of them visiting again and even recommending the business.

That’s why Imotion Analytics is interested in measuring client’s satisfaction, but the company admits that “people don’t always say what they think, and not because they lie, but because most of our cognitive processes are unconscious.” To solve that, they’ve developed a biometric analysis technology that combines infrared with video in order to detect the emotions of clients or users by using facial recognition.

The company claims that this technology allows them to know the client’s opinion in a non-intrusive way and much more effectively than traditional techniques. “It’s a pioneering system in Spain.”

An example of the company’s platform

The hotel chain Campanile has already installed this technology to monetize its clients’ facial expressions in their reception, which led to media coverage. That’s how the hotel receives additional information that that allows it to measure its guests’ satisfaction, evaluate its performance during the client’s experience and optimize its service protocols.

Besides monitoring the emotional state, the technology can measure segmented affluences by gender and age in areas of interest. That way, “we can offer our clients information pertaining employee workload, client demography, capture and conversations ratios and other outputs that exponentially optimize the process of taking strategic decisions.”

Imotion Analytics is adamant about the fact that their services extend beyond just the hotel industry. Like previously mentioned, retail of course comes to mind, but the companies also identifies other sectors like transport, banking and culture. They’ve already had clients in all of them.