Colenso & Pedigree add punch to pooch selfies

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Following the success of Pedigree SelfieSTIX – a specially designed clip that lets owners attach a Pedigree DentaStix to the top of their smartphone – Pedigree and Colenso BBDO have launched the Pedigree SelfieSTIX app that lets people add fun filters to their dog’s perfect photo.

Like Snapchat lenses, but for dogs, the app easily converts peoples’ canine companions into a colourful cast of characters, including cops, aviators, university graduates, safari explorers and cowboys.

Dog owners can also expect a new release of filters around special occasions like Valentine’s Day and Easter.

Colenso BBDO creative technologist David Arcus said: “People have access to filters, so why not dogs? We looked everywhere for the tech, but it doesn’t exist – so we built it!

“We looked everywhere for the tech – but it doesn’t exist. So we built it!”

“We trained a network to recognise dog faces by feeding it thousands of images of dogs. Over time, the trained algorithm learned to recognise similar patterns across all the images – the edges of the ears, or the contrasting colours of the nose, for instance.

“Then whenever the dog looks at the camera, the app places a fun filter on its face.”

Cormac van den Hoofdakker, brand manager of Pedigree at Mars NZ, said: “We love our dogs, so why not give them access to all the fun things us humans have too? The SelfieSTIX phone clip meant that people could have meaningful moments of closeness with their dogs in the form of a perfect selfie.

“But with the app, it truly takes those selfies to the next level.”

He says the app transforms the campaign and activation into a platform that can be refreshed time and time again, driving repeat purchase of the DentaStix product.

“The app uses a unique combination of canine facial recognition technology and machine learning to track the dog’s face, which allows for accurate placing of the filters,” he said. “It then lets people share their filtered selfie through social media.”

Compatible with Android and iOS devices, the app is free to download from the App Store and Google Play.

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