Irisys develops behavior intelligence solutions for environments in an array of industries worldwide. Delivering faster checkout lines, cleaner facilities, higher-security perimeters and more, Irisys’ solutions are deployed throughout the globe’s leading retail operations, publicly and privately owned buildings, airports, security systems, quick-serve restaurants and other facilities.

Business Issue

Duffey was originally brought on board in 2010 to launch the company’s emergence into the North American market. Since then, Duffey has expanded its strategy to harness an integrated channel approach that influences audiences globally and validates Irisys as the market expert.

Using a combination of traditional public relations and business marketing strategies, Duffey has continuously elevated Irisys’ corporate- and product-level reputations above those of its competitors.

Although Irisys is the world’s largest provider of people counting and queue management devices, with more than 300,000 devices deployed, it operates within a highly competitive global marketplace.

To remain at the top of the pack, Irisys must constantly innovate its product offerings and evolve its message. Irisys asked Duffey to help them launch its latest scientific advancement, Thermal 2.0, at the largest annual retail show in North America – the National Retail Federation’s annual BIG SHOW in New York City.

The challenge? For the first time in years, Irisys was not on the main exhibition floor.

Duffey’s charge was to generate a multi-channel marketing and branding campaign incorporating stand design elements, media relations, social and digital storytelling that brought Irisys out of the background to ensure the company would not get lost in the sea of 30,000 exhibitors and attendees.


Duffey and Irisys began laying the campaign’s foundation in September with an aggressive media relations and social media campaign called “Thermal is Cool.” Through white papers, case studies, and thermal-treated imagery, Duffey implemented an engaging narrative that not only maintained Irisys’ position as the globe’s No. 1 supplier of retail intelligent devices, but also as an innovator evolving with the latest state-of-the-science thermal kinetics advancements.

Duffey also leaped ahead of the NRF pack by announcing Thermal 2.0 and other product upgrades, including its Gazelle 2 people counter, a full month in advance of the show. This strategy resulted in pre-show media coverage among top-tier industry outlets as well as generating interest for on-site interviews and product demonstrations.

Irisys’ show visibility was enhanced through a 3:30 Duffey-produced animated video that looped on an 80” screen, visible from the conference floor’s entrance. The purpose of the video was two-fold. The first, and main purpose, was to give the stand some “sizzle” – drama, light, motion, and a modern detail that attracts attention in a cluttered environment. The second was to give more real estate to communicate influential messages that we didn’t have space to produce on the actual stand.

The last key ingredient was to incorporate an enticing on-site social media promotion that elevated Irisys from competitors at NRF 2016, encouraged exhibit visits, drove both social and on-site interaction, and increased social following.

The “Aren’t We Cool” campaign leveraged both the thermal branding and launch of an upgraded device, Gazelle 2, by utilizing two standalone cutouts of thermal-treated gazelles in a grazing position. These visually stimulating cut outs were unique to Irisys, and added interest to passerby attendees, serving as a key ice breaker for lead generation. Participants simply took a photo with the gazelles and posted it to Twitter utilizing the hashtags #ThermalisCool and #NRF16. Winners were selected daily and received either a Yeti cooler or tumbler.


Using this approach, Duffey’s bold thinking and highly-targeted implementation paid off. Irisys’ ask to rise above the crowd was more than realized by securing a record-setting lead capture total of nearly 240 prospects, about a 60% increase over 2015.

Key thought-leadership and product-spotlighting media coverage was secured in top-tier retail industry media throughout the campaign, including: Chain Store Age, Progressive Grocer, Supermarket News, NRF STORES, The Shopping Centre (UK), Journal Dunet (France), Retail Touch Points, Retail Info Systems News, Retail Wire, Retail Customer Experience and others.

Additionally, Irisys’ partners and staff were thrilled with the excitement generated by the exhibit and build-up campaign.

Jordan Britchford, Irisys Global Marketing Manager said: “We couldn’t be happier with the efforts of the whole Duffey team. They were a pleasure to work with. The whole Irisys team has nothing but praise for them, and we were all very impressed.”


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