Customers who smile get better service! Well, that's definitely the case if you go to a brand new vending machine that gives you a free ice cream when you smile at it! This innovative use of facial recognition technology from customer experience company SapientNitro and ice cream makers Unilever is our latest example of 3D Thinking (Number #10 in our search for 100 Examples Of 3D Thinking)
They are currently testing it at Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival and after it prompts you to smile, the machine measures the wideness of your grin using facial recognition technology! It then snaps a picture of you, and, with your permission, uploads that snap to Facebook. (You can see a gallery of smiling faces here on Cannes Sapient Nitro's Facebook Page). You then choose your ice cream reward and out it pops. The result? Customers who I suspect walk away with an even bigger smile on their faces (and, no doubt, tell others)!
So, what does this mean for businesses? It's a great example of being 'Remarkable' which is an ingredient of 3D Characteristic #2: Establish A Dramatic Difference! It personalises' the experience and creates a real buzz among customers who then go onto Facebook to see their photographs and I suspect 'Remark' to lots and lots of other people!
The whole concept of face recognition technology is an interesting one. I've thought of an even better way of using it to enhance the customer experience - There are lots of businesses who could perhaps benefit by turning the camera round and 'rewarding' their customer facing staff who actually smile at their customers!