A week ago in London, our co-founder, Thomas Rankin, unveiled something we've been working on for quite some time to a lucky crowd of industry leaders.
Now we share this news with you. Hang onto your hats, it's explosive.
The start of anything great is typically brought on by a problem in dire need of a solution. That's the simplistic explanation, but there is so much more to killer ideas that go the distance. Identifying a gap in the market is far from an obvious task, let alone taking on the mission to solve for it.
Our self-imposed vocation here at Dash Hudson is to make the lives of social marketers easier by providing them with the most sophisticated, cutting edge tools. Our ambition for helping our customers do their jobs better and more efficiently is what keeps us up at night. It's what revs up our engines. It's what fuels our fire.
So imagine how shook we were when we noticed they were experiencing image-sourcing woes. On top of that, they were having difficulty cracking what types of content their own consumers really cared for. Because intuition and creative departments can only go so far. Our all-encompassing, robust Instagram platform has been providing our peeps with deep insights and sharp, elaborate tools, yet lacked a remedy to this mounting issue.
We know that our users care about photos and content curation a lot. "Instagram is important to our customers," says our co-founder and CEO Thomas Rankin, "but they're trying to get smarter around photos and videos." That's when a chance encounter with a weiner dog (ask us about that in person) changed everything and sparked the next phase of Dash Hudson.
Enter Dash Hudson Vision. We needed to develop a tool that would intelligently facilitate performance through curation, and solve for understanding what photos and videos audiences really care to see. In a world where there are myriads of visual touchpoints and where images are conversation drivers, marketers are increasingly revolving content strategy around photos. It was time to create something that would be even bigger than big data.
Social media marketing has relied on equal parts numbers and intuition since businesses first began dabbling in it. What brands have previously been deciding on a hunch needs to now be executed with unquestionable conviction. Consumers are increasingly savvy and, let's face it, spoiled with information. Going about regular Instagram content marketing initiatives is no longer enough.
With Dash Hudson's shiny new product, Vision, we're bringing computer vision technology to the table. A software that is able to read, analyze, and understand content. While brands previously had to "rely on historical analytics and make decisions based on gut instinct, creative acumen, and the subjective opinions of others," asserts Thomas, Vision now brings forth real-time insights on which to base data-driven creative decisions.
Vision analyzes all your branded content —from your own social content, your UGC, your website, or any photo shoots you want to put under the microscope— with image recognition technology. The platform is then able to understand what photos will resonate on your visual touchpoints based on real-time insights, and continuously keeps learning what types of photos your audience cares about seeing. This facilitates a quick, streamlined, efficient curation process through performance prediction that is one hundred percent tailored to your brand.
"We're really excited about its potential for not only making teams more efficient in terms of finding things and making decisions, but in terms of performance as well," muses Thomas. In fact, we've been privy to most visual marketing hurdles experienced by brands, a top concern being content segments. Because "it's not about sharing just one type of picture that works for an audience, it's figuring out the blend of things that is going to engage people and tell the brand story," he continues, "and often times, what we see is that the investment mix is just wrong."
Brands often attribute too much importance to a specific content segment that isn't actually resonating. Dedication to the right images and finding a balance of visuals that engages well across the board is precisely the visual content marketing assistance that Vision can provide.
The possibilities are endless with Vision. We've previously seen how it can assist the Urban Outfitters brands in differentiating their content mix from one another, as well as how it can help the Gap brands improve their content performance. Beyond serving your own account, Vision can also be an incredible tool for deciding future influencer partnerships. By pulling in UGC, it analyzes whether or not an influencer's content is the right fit for your audience, as you can immediately see and understand whether their posts resonate with your own followers.
There are no limits to finding visual marketing uses for this software. This is big picture stuff.
And for those who are weary of technology replacing humans, fear not. Vision's visual analytics are business intelligence tools that bring social marketers the best image options to make their jobs easier. As Thomas puts it: "it simply brings you the information and then lets you make the decision. Even when we make recommendations, they're often across a broad different type of photo." It's all about getting to a decision faster. Not about deciding for you.
Indeed, the future of social media marketing is actually happening right now. With Dash Hudson Vision.