Five start-ups innovating for John Lewis, Diageo and Camelot

Brands are increasingly working with start-ups to try and find tech-oriented solutions to their problems before someone else does.

Collider: start-ups and brands gather at the accelerator programme
Collider: start-ups and brands gather at the accelerator programme

Diageo, Camelot, Puma are among the brands partnering with Collider, an accelerator that focuses on growing start-ups before matchmaking them with brands or agencies.

Speaking at Collider’s demo day, marketers from the partner brands revealed their handpicked start-ups from 2015’s crop.

Pixoneye – scanning selfies for insight

Demo day winner Pixoneye is an image-recognition service with a difference. Pixoneye scans consumers’ smartphone snaps for information that tells brands about their likes and preferences.

The idea is that normal demographics no longer work in the mobile world – for example, a 35-year-old man posting pictures of himself surfing and drinking cocktails on the beach is unlikely to have the same interests as a similarly aged man posting baby photos.

As yet, it seems the start-up hasn’t ironed out the many privacy issues that are likely to arise with its tech. But the company is already working with Dunnhumby, Ogilvy and Havas to improve its offering.

Burst – analytics for Vine videos

Burst taps in on the growing appetite for short-form video content. The start-up provides brands with an analytics suite showing data on how their videos are performing on Twitter, Vine, Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat.

Diageo is already working with Burst, with innovation chief Sara Springer commenting: "What struck me was two things – they can offer deep and robust understanding of a totally new media space. And their offer extends beyond analytics, bringing creative and strategic expertise to the conversation."

Storesense - tracking shoppers for insights

More retailers are experimenting with beacon technology as a way to find out what consumers are thinking while in-store, but Storesense claims to offer "actionable" insights right out of the box.

The company tracks shoppers around a bricks-and-mortar store, and aims to find out why a shopper might leave without buying anything and which departments they visit. The idea is to help retailers boost the shopper experience – without a "ham-fisted" salesperson getting in the way.

Marketing understands the start-up is currently in early discussions to trial its tech with a number of retailers, including John Lewis.

Real Life Analytics – making digital screens smarter

For Camelot’s head of interactive and mobile, Alex Schajer, Real Life Analytics could finally give the lottery brand insight into who stands in front of its screens.

Real Life Analytics builds digital screens kitted out with advanced software that both tracks who is standing before, and shows content in real time.

According to the start-up, retailers can know who is in their store in real time, and can target content accordingly.

Schajer said: "I immediately fell in love with this product – we could recognise who was in front of our screens and deliver engaging content to them. It’s finally using data to get a better idea of who is in our stores."

Ignidata – rewards for millennials

One increasingly popular way of carrying out market research is for brands to reward consumers for their time and engagement.

Portuguese start-up Ignidata partners with high-quality content providers, who give consumers access to paywalled content in exchange for completing a brand survey. Brands get "real-time results", and consumers get access to premium content.

The idea is to target millennials, the piracy generation which wants "everything to be free, right now". The start-up has pilots running with brands including Puma, Vodafone Portugal and News UK.