Brands are spending large amounts of money on sponsorships, in particular in sports, which are seen as a unique way of engaging emotionally with fans. Ideally the brand will be featured prominently in an image of a star player scoring a key goal for the home side and reap the benefits of being connected to a moment of collective glory.
Anecdotally brands get “a lot” of exposure for their sponsorships of teams and athletes via images shared on social media, but up till now, no one has been able to quantify this valuable audience.
Luckily for brands, the convergence of existing computer vision technology and the recent advances in machine learning are changing the game. Large-scale analysis of social media images to identify brand logos and gather useful information about audience and engagement is now emerging as a credible approach to earned media measurement, especially for sport sponsorship. It is now possible to look inside the image to detect faces, objects and brand logos at a scale, speed and accuracy that was impossible a few years ago. These new approaches reveal huge audiences and high levels of engagement that were previously invisible.