Laugh Tracker


How do we drive family travel to Tennessee?

We knew parents want nothing more than to hear their kids laugh — because it’s proof they are happy.


To eliminate the subjectivity of travel reviews, we identified an entirely new metric to rate travel experiences — laughter. We created a first-of-its-kind wearable device that measures laughter and excitement to determine how much fun kids have in Tennessee. We put the devices on hundreds of kids across 31 locations in Tennessee. Equipped with a microphone, GPS technology and cloud computing, the device recorded audio samples in 10-second increments and sent them to a neural network, where artificial intelligence (AI) software determines if a sound is laughter. We concurrently captured heart rate data to measure excitement — ultimately identifying the specific activities within attractions that generated the most laughter and excitement for kids. VMLY&R developed a custom experience on Tennessee’s brand site to create a planning tool for moms, showcasing the data collected and attraction review directly from kids.

  • 2,023,723 data points analyzed
  • 1,667,760 seconds of laughter recorded
  • 80 average laughs per hour (per kid)
  • 3.5x more laughs than average
  • Influenced 157,733 hotel bookings
  • $42.2 million in direct hotel revenue
  • $142 : $1 projected return on ad spend
  • 235 million earned media impressions
  • Super REGGIE (Best of Show) at ANA REGGIE Awards
  • Gold at ANA REGGIE Awards
  • Gold at New York Festivals AME Awards
  • Innovator of the Year at Acquia Engage 2019