Event success measurement with an Ethical Facial Analysis

Intelligent mood barometer makes event efficiency measurable

Artificial intelligence is making its way into the event industry. Based on Artificial Intelligence, Guest-One offers its customers a remarkable add-on. Using technology known as Ethical Facial Analysis, it is possible to measure the mood of an event.

Artificial intelligence (AI) – for many people, this sounds like the distant future – like uncharted territory. But this is not correct. Long before smart technologies made it into the headlines of relevant gazettes, machine learning was already changing people’s lives. In many places, the benefits of artificial intelligence are a completely uncontroversial part of everyday life. Contrary to popular belief, machine learning is not a one-way street. In most cases, both sides benefit – provider and user. In many cases, classic win-win situations even develop.

An example from everyday life illustrates this: On the one hand, multimedia platforms and streaming services such as YouTube, Spotify or Netflix use the possibilities of artificial intelligence to create so-called suggestion lists. The individual visual behavior serves as the basis for this. The quality of these lists is amazingly high – and even increases over time. The machine learns. The user benefits from attractive new offers and previously unknown possibilities.

On the other hand, this information provides multimedia players with a wide range of information that is an important basis for decision-making in the context of financing issues, for example. Artificial intelligence can be used to reliably assess which investments and productions are profitable in certain markets – and which are not.

Measure event efficiency

The example illustrates that the use of AI changes many things. Especially in the professional environment, machine learning is creating a sense of optimism. ChatGPT adds to the hype. The prototype of a text-based dialog system has brought artificial intelligence to the attention of a broad public. It is not yet clear what role AI can play in the event industry. But the fact is that opportunities and possibilities are being explored in many places. Guest-One, the Wuppertal-based guest and attendee management company, is already one step ahead in applying AI to events. “We already offer our customers a solution that makes it possible to analyze faces and moods,” reports Thomas Küfner, who as Guest-One’s managing director is responsible for development, technology and innovation. In technical terminology, this is referred to as Ethical Facial Analysis.

Parameters such as age group, gender and mood are analyzed, taking into account all data protection regulations. “Personal data is explicitly not collected,” says Küfner, wiping any data protection concerns off the table in advance. “Nor could the system.” Guest-One was able to demonstrate the possibilities offered by Ethical Facial Analysis at an event organized by the Chamber of Industry and Commerce to kick off the year 2023. The speeches of different speakers were analyzed. On the basis of the recorded parameters age group, gender and mood, the tension and attention curve of the contributions could be impressively traced. The Ethical Facial Analysis was very attentive to a guest speaker known from TV, and the atmosphere was excellent.

Objective mood barometer

The fact that the visitors followed the appearance of the prominent speaker attentively on the whole is not surprising. After all, he enjoys nationwide fame as a meteorologist, author, and weather and climate expert. Nevertheless, it is worth taking a look at the details of the data obtained, because: When the weather presenter spoke about the consequences of the climate crisis and reported on necessary restrictions on individual mobility, the Ethical Facial technology registered a significant drop in mood among the male audience in the age group over 60. And in real time.

“What conclusions are to be drawn from this information in detail is a matter of interpretation,” says Küfner. However – and therein lies the added value of the Ethical Facial technology – the system has detected a drop in mood in the specific group of people as an objective fact. “This would not have been possible by any other means.” By using Ethical Facial technology, Guest-One offers customers real and unfiltered added value. Surveys as an alternative to the use of artificial intelligence, on the other hand, often deliver distorted or embellished results.

This small practical example gives a foretaste of how this AI technology can work beneficially in all directions in the event environment in the future. Ultimately, the guests also benefit from this, because: After all, the attention values underline the importance of the guest speaker for the event.

Real-time evaluation of the data

The fledgling experience gives an indication of how artificial intelligence can be used at events. Thomas Küfner’s thoughts, meanwhile, already go beyond the realm of Ethical Facial Analysis. The technology can also be used in the context of classic attendee management and in the area of guest organization. For example, automated badge scanning and the evaluation of certain features using QR codes are conceivable. Artificial intelligence also offers new options for important networking. The details of what these will look like have yet to be worked out. Küfner has no doubt that the use of modern technologies based on machine learning will come.

With a view to profitability, Guest-One’s positive outlook is all the more valid. In technical terms, artificial intelligence – especially the field of Ethical Facial Analysis – does not make exorbitant demands. A small device the size of a set-top box and conventional video cameras suffice as analysis hardware. AI also makes no special demands in terms of personnel deployment. The real-time evaluation of the data is fully automatic. Only for the interpretation and conclusions to be made on the basis of dense information, a little time is required. But this investment directly benefits the efficiency of the next event.