Published March 1, 2024 by

Written by Claud
Claud Tan

Humans are probably still years away from walking among robots on the streets or dining next to them in a restaurant. But human are getting closer with them in the social media sphere where H2R (Human 2 Robot) or virtual influencer interaction is evolving at a rapid pace.

Thousands of people around the world are taking to Instagram to follow and engage with a new wave of online personalities: virtual influencers. But exactly what is virtual influencer and what is the hype of brands considering them to be a part of their marketing campaign?

Virtual Influencers in Calvin Klein ads with supermodel
Source : Options.

What is Virtual Influencer?

In today’s digital era, the concept of a “Virtual Influencer” is no longer a futuristic fantasy but a present reality. Virtual influencers are digitally created or computer-generated characters that mimic human appearance and behavior. With advancements in technology, these characters are crafted with stunning detail, capable of expressing emotions, and interacting in real-time. They are no different with other influencer in providing entertaining content and build a relationship with their followers in digital world.

Imma in 'Find Your Courage' Campaign from Coach
Source : Branding in Asia.

Coach’s “Find Your Courage” Campaign Featuring Virtual Influencer, Imma

One of the most notable integrations of virtual influencers in marketing is Coach’s “Find Your Courage” campaign. This innovative campaign stars Imma, a virtual influencer known for her realistic appearance and fashion-forward style. Imma’s role in the campaign is pivotal, as she delivers the brand’s message of self-expression and courage, align with Coach campaign story.

Imma’s integration into the campaign’s messaging and visuals showcases the possibilities of virtual Influencer in storytelling and branding. The public and consumer response was overwhelmingly positive, with many praising the creativity and forward-thinking approach of using a virtual influencer as the face of a major brand campaign.

Cahaya Gram Virtual Influencer in Marketing
Source : dignation.

The Rise of Virtual Influencer in Brand Marketing

The use of virtual influencers in brand marketing is on the rise, with several brands integrated virtual influencer marketing even before the Coach’s Find Your Courage campaign.

Brands are increasingly attracted to virtual influencer marketing due to their cost-effectiveness and complete control over the influencer’s image without the limitations of physical boundaries.

For example, virtual influencers can deliver brand content to the audience in a novel and futuristic way, via fantastical personal stories and experiences, creating a narrative that stretches the imagination and resonates emotionally with their audience. Plus, virtual influencers give brands a total freedom in controlling over the campaign and products without worrying over influencers scheduling conflicts or potential personal controversies to resolve. It is definitely an advantage for brands for budget-friendly and efficient marketing campaign execution. 


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A post shared by Ruby 9100m (@ruby9100m)

Impact of Virtual Influencers in Marketing Campaigns

The effectiveness of virtual influencers in marketing campaigns have proven in achieving key campaign goals such as engagement, awareness, and conversions. As example, Adidas launched their Ozrah footwear and collaborated with virtual influencer, Ruby. The campaign was a success with positive engagement on social media.  Club Media, which manages Ruby, took charge of campaign’s creative and ensured the marketing materials resonated with target audience of forward-thinkers and trendsetters. Case studies of successful campaigns demonstrate the versatile application of virtual influencers across industries, from fashion to technology.

However, the integration of virtual influencers also presents challenges such as technological limitations and the need for continuous innovation to maintain realism and relatability. Despite challenges, the potential benefits and impact of virtual influencers in marketing campaigns are undeniable.

The Future of Virtual Influencer
Source : PRWeek

The Future of Virtual influencer Marketing

Consistent technology advancements in AI would enhance the realism and interactivity of virtual influencers, making them even more integral to marketing strategies. Moreover, as society emphasizes the ethical considerations and perceptions of virtual influencers, brands will need to execute campaign cautiously, balancing innovation with authenticity.

As we stand on the brink of this new era, the transformative potential of virtual influencers technology in marketing is clear. Brands who embrace virtual influencers would be able to unlock their creativity and connection with audience opportunities.

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