Two snaps up Deliver mobile marketing materials via image query with SnapTell

Posted by maggie.hunsucker November 26, 2008

The beauty of online advertising is your product is always a click away. However, if you rely on more traditional ad mediums, like print, television, or billboards, you are at the mercy of short attention spans. A customer may run across your ad while flipping through a magazine, interest piqued, but ultimately, just move on.

That’s where SnapTell might help. Users take a picture of a product or ad with their camera phone, send the image to SnapTell, and within seconds, receive information on the product – and if you’re a participating advertiser – coupons, branded media (like wallpapers or ringtones), promotional contest and prizes, and more. Unlike most mobile marketing, SnapTell is 100% user opt-in, which means users only receive your materials if they want them and more importantly, when they are motivated to use them.

SnapTell utilizes scalable image recognition technology to identify your product from the image. And despite the pitfalls of most camera phones – poor quality, low resolution, weird angles or lighting – the system is quite reliable. SnapTell maintains a large database of product and brand images, which it is able to search upon query. It can even extract text from the user’s image – a useful feature if your product is not registered in the SnapTell database already.

Advertisers can set up a SnapTell campaign though the online interface. Simply “drag and drop” product images into the database, set up the corresponding content delivery, and let Snaptell do the rest. You can even get campaign stats to see how effective your mobile marketing efforts are.

We spoke about the prospect of letting people connect items in the real world with wikipedia entries in The New Dimension - SnapTell is somewhat similar. This is also somewhat similar to using 2D barcodes, much the rage in Japan but only slowly gaining popularity in the U.S. of A.

SnapTell has some innovative partnerships with major magazines like Wired, US Weekly, and Rolling Stone, where the advertisers within the magazine pages can run their own promotional campaigns or be part of larger, magazine-wide contest, such as vacation or iPhone giveaway.


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