An interview with Ms. Sophie Wang, VP of Intelligent Business, DeepGlint
Artificial intelligence and big data technology have quietly and overwhelmingly changed our lives. DeepGlint is a technology company focusing on the development of artificial intelligence algorithm and applications. Its clients are spread over various fields including wellness, retail, finance, sport, urban life and more. DeepGlint collects and analyzes big data with accurate algorithms to help clients gain insights into their guests, understand their own business situations, optimize product mix and marketing strategies, predict market trends, and reap business success. SpaChina interviewed Ms. Sophie Wang, VP of Intelligent Business of DeepGlint. She reveals to us how artificial intelligence and big data technology are applied to the health and spa industry in particular.
Sophie holds a Master’s degree in Fashion, Experience & Design Management from SDA Bocconi School of Management, Italy. Her career started with new brand creation, design, sales and overseas promotion in a large state-owned enterprise. After that, she had five years of experience in developing her own brand, Darling, at home and abroad, and served as a consultant or senior executive for a number of international luxury brands, like MaxMara, LaPerla and Tod’s Group. Sophie has rich experience and resources concerning the integration of online and offline operations and the development of the fashion industry. She always desires to bring customers a high ROI experience. Currently, at DeepGlint, she is mainly responsible for applying artificial intelligence and big data to help offline retail enterprises realize intelligent digitalized operation and management, improve sales and efficiency, and achieve a long-term healthy development.
Please introduce DeepGlint to us, including your team, core technologies, business areas, main clients, products and services, etc.
DeepGlint is a leading company in the industry specialized in artificial intelligence technology, focusing on the development of artificial intelligence algorithms and applications. We are committed to transforming artificial intelligence, Internet of Things and big data technology into intelligent products and services, and providing our clients with diverse products and solutions including software, intelligent hardware and cloud services fit for different business scenes. DeepGlint has a wide range of clients from different industries and fields. Our main business sectors include Smart Finance, Smart City, Smart Business, and Smart Sport.
Our self-developed technology in terms of visual perception, intelligent data mining and high-performance computing is globally leading. We have won awards in various artificial intelligence algorithm competitions home and abroad.
DeepGlint is headquartered in Beijing and has branches in Shanghai, Chengdu, Hefei and Guangzhou. Our team is composed of a large number of senior professionals from China and overseas alike who possess rich business operation experience and a strong technical background.
In terms of wellness resorts / spas / beauty salons, how do you help them gain insights into their guests and improve their products, services and experience?
We comprehensively present the guests’ information to our clients, help them identify their core guest groups, grasp the changing trends, and understand the different concerns and consumption motivations of their guests. As a result, they can better understand their guests and then provide personalized services or recommend the right products to each individual. Guests’ experience are surely improved at the end of the day.
At wellness resorts, spas and beauty salons for example, at the entrance, DeepGlint intelligent business system can immediately and accurately show the age and gender of the guests and tell whether they come for the first time or not, whether they also visit other chain stores or not, whether they come alone or with others, whether they are guests or staff, and their visit frequency, etc. By analyzing the moving line diagram and thermodynamic diagram of the guests, the system then clearly and quickly show the crowded and uncrowded areas of the place, the service quality of the staff, whether different types of guests have visited the core business area or not, their length of stay and interaction information, and to what kind of products they pay attention, etc. All this information gives our clients a better understanding of how to improve guests’ experience and satisfy different types of consumers. Combined with the right products and marketing approaches, income will surely increase.
At spas and beauty salons in particular, we can also evaluate the effect of their show windows and advertisements, calculate the conversion rate of people passing by the door, analyze the interaction status at the core area, allow staff to update guest information in the system, and remind clients to do proper preparations in advance so as to provide personalized experiences upon their arrival. The multi-dimensional, highly valuable, precise and personalized data that we offer can effectively guide our clients to adjust their business strategies and management approaches in time.
In addition, we help clients to form more connections with the guests even when they leave the store via advanced scientific and technological methods.
To sum up, with the power of our smart business system, we are able to support our clients to optimize and innovate their product portfolio, improve services, break through traditional business models, embrace internet thinking, and take advantage of industry experience and resources, and thus create more profit.
Apart from guest information, what other data and service support can you provide to your clients?
To help our clients gain insight into guest information and characteristics is surely very important, but it is still just a part of business big data analysis. Any single piece of data must be analyzed interactively with other different types of data to achieve better results.
The Smart Business system of DeepGlint focuses on the core value to help clients give full play to their own advantages. Through five smart sectors (client management, brand management, product management, marketing management and employee management), we help our clients fulfill information digitization, capitalization and monetization, maintain sales growth, and realize efficient inventory turnover and profit margin increase. We also guide them to discover new business opportunities and challenges, and carry out sustainable development.
In order to improve efficiency, DeepGlint combines its products for different fields so as to give a more comprehensive solution. For example, our products dedicated to the commercial area are often integrated with those for security cases, or used together with non-inductive temperature measurement products, and artificial intelligence sport products.
For example, we can blacklist some high-risk visitors for the hotels and resorts by connecting with the public security system, to create a safer and more relaxed environment. We understand that there are some special guests who particularly care about their privacy and identity protection. In such cases, we do behavior warning analysis of the people around them within a selected diameter. It’s a good way to improve guest experience. In areas that are only open to hotel guests, we will suggest using our “face scanning + temperature measurement” tool to do a quick pre-screening. We can also do observation in specific areas and once any suspicious people are found, the system will immediately send an alarm to the security personnel. With all these services, the guests can enjoy their time at the hotel without any concerns.
Very often, a wellness resort features an outdoor walking & running trail. Our intelligent system is able to reproduce one’s running posture and calculate the injury risk through high frame rate motion capture and real-time processing technology, so as to help avoid sport injury caused by improper running postures. The resort’s guests can get feedback and adjustment suggestions very quickly through a simple WeChat code scan. Our accuracy rate in calculating speed, stride frequency, stride length, center of body weight, and other related parameters is more than 97%.
For health management, our virtual evaluation and rehabilitation system combines visual algorithms with hardware. It gives real-time movement feedback and guidance during exercise, customizes solutions according to individual’s moving characters, and finds out the problems and preferences of the target users, helping the resorts and hotels serve every guest in a better way. By analyzing the exercising characteristics of each guest, the system automatically recommend a personized exercise plan.
Moreover, we have developed software for offline exercise evaluation. With their mobile phones, users can do exercising tests in various places. The system will do assessments and customize movements for users accordingly. Based on the performance of users, the system can make adjustments in time. The system can even create interaction scenes to extend the experience to a wider space and thus help hotels and resorts enhance their connection with the guests.
So you can see our Smart Business system is a systematic solution. By understanding the client’s advantages and giving early warning of risks, we help them improve guest experience, optimize product combination, analyze sales trends and driving forces, quantitatively evaluate marketing impact, enhance internal transparency and maximize resource efficiency. We assist our clients to comprehensively enhance their automatic operation, and issue high-quality reports regularly according to the big data analysis to help them make rational analysis and efficient decision-making, and optimize financial and operational indicators.
How do you advise and assist SPA (or other clients) to transform the data they get into specific business solutions? Could you share with us some successful cases of cooperation between DeepGlint and your clients in the hospitality and wellness industry?
DeepGlint attaches great importance to the commercial value of big data. We help our clients expand the data collection dimensions and explore the value of the data. Through continuous optimization of algorithms and data models, we do regular automatic analysis, launch highly visualized reports and customize consulting services to help clients understand their business situation in a more comprehensive way so that they can analyze rationally and make decisions efficiently.
First, I want to give an example of product pricing. The pandemic has drawn the attention of many international brands to the Chinese market. In 2020, dozens of brands raised the prices of their products again and again in order to make up for the losses in other markets. What we do is to recommend a proper price adjustment list and increase range based on the client’s brand positioning and big data analysis via our smart business system. We also make pricing models and carry out sales forecasts for our clients for specific products. Our clients are very satisfied with the effect.
There is another example. One of our spa clients complained that their guests’ loyalty decreased in the past two months and purchased products without systematic planning. With the analysis of our smart business system and an in-depth conversation with the management team, we uncovered the reasons. A few new brands came into the market recently which have a more competitive salary system than our client. Our client soon experienced a loss of employees. The newly recruited staff lack a deep understanding of the guests, products and services, and fail to properly utilize the system. Both the receptionists and salesmen lack enough interaction with the guests. So while our client begin to adjust the salary system, we accurately suggested personalized products that target different guest groups based on a comprehensive analysis of the data we gathered in our smart business system, including guest characteristics, their interaction information, their purchase history, the inventory, and profit margin. We also developed a plan including long-term spa programs and gift boxes to win back the core guests’ hearts. Together with the intensive and accurate marketing promotions done by the client, we helped them to tide over the crisis successfully. During the anniversary, our client not only witnessed a significant sales increase compared with the same period last year, but also attract many more people to join in the membership.
For clients who have strategic cooperation with us, we not only help them understand better their current business situation, but also regularly provide them with data reports concerning the market environment, consumer comments and competitor information, so that they can always keep ahead.
Our clients who use our Smart Business products and solutions have generally achieved a double-digit, triple digit or even higher growth rate of sales in the short term. In fact, we also offer support to our clients in the long term. For example, we collect, accumulate and build a perfect big data system for them through the intelligent Internet of Things. This system not only makes them understand the current situation better and foresee the future risks and opportunities, but also enables them to quickly accumulate the intangible assets of big data and gradually realize the transformation from quantitative change to qualitative change.
In the process of data collection, data modeling and management, what devices and technology do you mainly use? What are the factors that decide the accuracy of data? How does DeepGlint ensure data accuracy?
Data accuracy is affected by many factors. The first is the accuracy of data collection, which is a big test for our hardware and experience. In terms of hardware, apart from selecting the industry’s top partners, we have developed the world’s first three-dimensional behavior analyzer, the world’s first long-distance face recognition camera and others. In addition to excellent hardware products, we also have a team of senior engineers, who work out the best configuration plan for clients according to their characteristics and needs, taking into account both the beauty and accuracy at the same time.
The core of data accuracy lies in the algorithm engine. Our founder and CEO, Dr. Zhao Yong was graduated from the Department of Computer Engineering of Brown University, specializing in computer vision and computational imaging. He is a former senior researcher of Google Research Institute and one of the inventors of Google Glasses. Under his leadership, our algorithm is in the leading position in the industry, whether for the feature recognition of people, cars and objects, or the recognition and analysis of 3D posture and other motions.
Meanwhile, we are also proud of our attitude of diligent learning and scientific truth-seeking. In all cooperation, we attach great importance to our clients’ feedback, and are keen on learning from the industry experience. This has laid a solid foundation for us to continuously renew, optimize and innovate products while ensuring high data accuracy.
What do you think of the development prospects of big data technology in the hospitality and health industry? We all know it is an inevitable trend, but how fast and deep will it develop? What is the development plan of DeepGlint in this area?
Thanks to the rapid development of artificial intelligence and big data technology, a large number of data collection and pre-analysis work can be done by artificial intelligence now instead of humans. As a result, the management team has more time and energy to make decisions based on the rich data and analysis reports. The application of artificial intelligence, big data and cloud services help enterprises process basic data more quickly, increase information flow and transparency, find out the relevance of different data and do trend predictions accurately.
From the application level, the pandemic has driven the digitization of offline business in the hospitality and health industry. We see more and more face scan entry services, robot stewards, and environment friendly smart household devices. Big data and AI are widely accepted and practiced in the whole industry very quickly yet also silently. A friend of mine shared his experience. He is the VVIP of a top international hotel group. He once came to a new property of the hotel group that he had never visited before, however, since his arrival, all the staff were able to call his name correctly and offered him services in the way he preferred, which made this picky guest quite satisfied. Since then, he has kept this hotel brand on his travel list. No doubt, this is a good example of big data application. In the past, such services could only be achieved through repeated personnel training, but now they can be quickly realized with technological tools. It improves the guest experience and their loyalty with lower cost and higher efficiency. DeepGlint is a company specialized in artificial intelligence. Our vision is to make the world a better place through technology. We only cooperate with clients who share the same sense of social responsibility and values with us, and who pay attention to brand value and have long-term development plans. For the hospitality and health industry, word-of-mouth and guest experience are the most important things. Online service can play an effective role in product promotion and market education, but it is unfailingly the offline experience that determines the outcome. We will continue to work together with our clients in exploring and cultivating the offline business scenes, helping them get a deep insight into their guests so as to effectively solve the needs of the guests and constantly optimize their operations. At the same time, we will support the hotels to create a more relaxed and safe environment and a richer interactive experience by combining in our advantages in Smart Security and Smart Sports sectors. Even when the guests leave the hotels or spas, they will still stick to the brand faithfully and passionately share their experience with others.