We have been receiving many inquiries about how we are better than our competitors. We thought we would put together a brief competitive analysis.
In early 2017 we learned about the enormous damages done by counterfeiting. Especially in Pharmaceuticals, close to 1 million people die worldwide every year due to counterfeit medicines.
We thought maybe there is some technology out there which we can promote to help prevent so many deaths. We started to research, and to our surprise, there was hardly anything which was foolproof.
Almost all the companies believe that using holograms or some kind of unique pattern or unique graphics or Unique Id (serialization), they can prevent the counterfeits. But, in reality, it is very simple to clone these unique labels and pass a counterfeit check.
The sticker or hologram based security assumes people will automatically know how to distinguish between a genuine and non-genuine check. It actually backfires, because if a counterfeiter just creates a better-looking hologram, his product will be considered authentic by a consumer and a real product may be regarded as fake by the same user.
In case of mobile-based authentication, everyone again is giving all the emphasis on the uniqueness of the sticker or code or UID, and the truth is – they can be easily cloned to pass the authenticity check.
Based on our analysis, the right way to solve this problem was to monitor the scan patterns, as counterfeiter has no control over the consumers. And the scan pattern analysis on the product item, when looked at in a holistic way, becomes unique and impossible to mimic in the real world.
It is very similar to the way bank monitors the credit card usage pattern, so even if someone steals your credit card, their new purchase pattern raises the RED flags.
Our smart tags are backed by AI
We designed a system which monitors more than two dozen scan patterns using a combination of heuristic and machine learning modules and looks for patterns which can raise RED flags. For example, one simple pattern would be – scans on the same code in a small time interval, but from 2 different geographic locations, in the real world this would be impossible unless the code has been cloned, and our system would immediately raise RED flag for such codes.
Now, this type of pattern monitoring can very well help bring down the counterfeits, but we wanted even more certainty. So we designed the second algorithmic coupled code which can only be accessed after purchase, and it is a one-time scan code, meaning if this code is scanned we know for sure that the item, it belonged to, is purchased, and we lock the first code too.
The first code (pre-purchase code) helps a consumer to know the authenticity of the item before purchase.
The second, post-purchase code, can only be accessed by the user once item is purchased, as this code is inside a sealed package or may be covered by a peel-off or scratch-off layer, helps consumer participate in the brand’s loyalty rewards and internally also marks the product item as purchased, and locks the corresponding pre-purchase code.
Control the customer drop off rate – no app download required
Using our codes, the problem of counterfeiting can be solved. However, the question arises, will the consumers really scan the codes?
We found that if we ask users to download a mobile app first, then the majority of users will drop off. So we designed our system to be completely app-less. Our codes can be printed as QR or NFC, which can be scanned by any smartphone (with a camera and inbuilt NFC capability) without the need of downloading any app.
Loyalty Engine and eWarranty Engine
Now, the other challenge was – how to make people scan the codes; this is where we work with the brand to show appropriate marketing message to the consumer, such as “Scan for Authentic”. We also work with brands for proper consumer education via various channels. On the second code, we introduced the Loyalty and eWarranty engagement, with a message such as “Scan for Rewards” or “Scan to Register Warranty” along with scratch-off or peel-off layers on the code. This incentivizes consumers to “scratch and scan” the post-purchase code.
Authentic customer data is the new weapon for brands to stay in the competition
The brands have double gains with our two tags system – elimination of counterfeits and retail consumers onboarding into the digital world of the brand.
Since the consumer provides the contact information to avail rewards or warranty, brands have chances to engage the consumer further via digital marketing.
So the investment on NeuroTags basically pays off many times by increasing the consumer signups and then re-engagement. Also, removing the counterfeits from the market increases overall sales.
We also have introduced the automated re-engagement rules which brand can customize to auto-engage users based on their consumption pattern, e.g., a wine lover would love to be reminded of whenever her wine stock requires refilling, and a small discount or extra reward from the brand just before that can seal the deal that she will buy the same brand wines next time.
We have also introduced the eCommerce buttons, which also helps users to re-buy by scanning the product item.
Additionally, we also provide on-demand AR capabilities without app download to engage the users further and help viral the product.
NeuroTags Vs. Competitors
|Competitive Summary||Competitors in the market||NeuroTags|
|Works without a need to Download App||Usually No||Yes|
|Clone detection and red flagging (continuous AI Cloud monitoring) – without this counterfeiting doesn’t stop||No||Yes|
|User onboarding (signup) and life-cycle management system||No||Yes|
|Integrated Loyalty Engine, eWarranty and Gaming Engine||No||Yes|
|Integrated Digital Marketing Automation||Usually No||Yes|
|Overall Consumer Engagement
(projected level of use)
|Needs an app or have other frictions (Low)||Very High
(over 5X industry average)
|Integrated supply chain visibility (track and trace)||Usually No||Yes|
|Integrated Analytics Dashboards for Leadership||Usually No||Yes|
|Cloud-based, Scalability||Usually No, usually Limited||Yes, Unlimited|
Following table shows how NeuroTags empowers brands in the physical world (retail sales)
|Capability||Online Sales via marketplace (Amazon, etc.)||Direct Online Sales (Brand)||Classic Retail Sales||Retail Sales with NeuroTags|
|Brand controlled consumer data||Weak||Strong||Weak||Strong|
|Strong anti-counterfeit platform||Weak||Strong||Weak||Strong|
|Brand controlled post-sale suggestive upselling||Average||Strong||Weak||Strong|
|Brand controlled “Life of customer” – marketing programs||Average||Strong||Weak||Strong|
|Promote brand loyalty programs||Average||Strong||Weak||Strong|
|Customer feedback loop||Average||Strong||Weak||Strong
Please contact us to know more about NeuroTags offerings.