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Virtual Influencers in Video Game Industry

Who Are Virtual Influencers?

Virtual influencers are digitally created 3D characters, crafted with graphic software to emulate human appearance, behavior, and personalities, complete with unique hobbies and interests. Like their human counterparts, they amass followings on social platforms, presenting brands with compelling opportunities to engage predominantly young audiences. Virtual influencers can complement traditional influencer marketing strategies and serve as a gateway to the metaverse.

With a current market size of $4.6 billion, expected to surge by 26% by 2025, virtual influencers are increasingly appealing to brands and consumers alike. According to a survey by the Influencer Marketing Factory, 58% of respondents follow at least one virtual influencer.

Moreover, 35% of consumers have made purchases based on virtual influencer endorsements, with 40% of these buyers belonging to the Gen Z and Millennial demographics.

Virtual Influencers in Gaming

The gaming industry has seen a significant rise in popularity in recent years, with the introduction of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) technologies revolutionizing the way we play video games. This shift has also impacted the way video games are marketed and promoted, leading to a growing trend in the use of virtual influencers in the gaming industry. In this case study, we will examine the use of virtual influencers in promoting video games and their immersive gameplay, showcasing the potential and effectiveness of this marketing strategy.

One of the most notable examples of virtual influencer in the gaming industry is “Lil Miquela,” a virtual influencer launched by Brud, a technology company in the artificial intelligence space. Lil Miquela has been used to promote various video games, including the highly popular “Among Us” game. Her unique and visually striking appearance, combined with her large and engaged social media presence, made her the perfect partner for promoting the game. Through her partnership with “Among Us,” Lil Miquela was able to drive significant engagement and increase brand awareness for the game.

Another example of a virtual influencer in the gaming industry is “Kizuna AI,” a virtual influencer created by Tokyo-based company, Activ8. Kizuna AI has been used to promote various video games, including the “Granblue Fantasy” game. Her engaging social media presence and unique visual style made her the perfect partner for promoting the game. Through her partnership with “Granblue Fantasy,” Kizuna AI was able to drive significant engagement and increase brand awareness for the game.

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Riot Games utilized virtual influencer Shinlim to add a futuristic edge to their marketing campaign for the first-person shooter game “Valorant.” Shinlim’s unique style perfectly complemented the game’s sci-fi theme, generating excitement and anticipation among the target audience. The partnership between Shinlim and “Valorant” resulted in increased engagement and brand awareness.

Nintendo turned to virtual influencer Koopa to help market their latest addition to the Mario Kart franchise, “Mario Kart Live: Home Circuit.” Koopa’s playful and quirky persona was a perfect match for the game’s lighthearted tone, spurring interest and excitement among potential players. The collaboration between Koopa and “Mario Kart Live: Home Circuit” resulted in a significant boost in engagement and brand recognition.

Devolver Digital partnered with virtual influencer Noodle to bring the multiplayer game “Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout” to the forefront of popular culture. Noodle’s quirky and fun-loving attitude was a great fit for the game’s playful theme, generating excitement and anticipation among the target audience. The partnership between Noodle and “Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout” resulted in a significant increase in engagement and brand awareness.

CD Projekt Red leveraged virtual influencer Ava to elevate their marketing campaign for the highly anticipated open-world game “Cyberpunk 2077.” Ava’s edgy and futuristic style perfectly matched the game’s sci-fi theme, creating interest and excitement among potential players. The collaboration between Ava and “Cyberpunk 2077” led to increased engagement and brand recognition.

Electronic Arts utilized virtual influencer Zero Two to give their marketing campaign for the battle royale game “Apex Legends” a futuristic edge. Zero Two’s edgy and cutting-edge persona was a great match for the game’s sci-fi theme, generating excitement and anticipation among the target audience. The partnership between Zero Two and “Apex Legends” resulted in a significant boost in engagement and brand awareness.

Virtual Influencers in Marketing

The use of virtual influencers in the gaming industry provides several benefits compared to traditional influencer marketing. Virtual influencers can be customized and styled in a way that resonates with the target audience, providing a more targeted reach. In addition, virtual influencers are cost-effective compared to traditional influencers, allowing brands to promote their video games at a fraction of the cost of traditional influencer marketing.

Another key benefit of virtual influencer marketing in the gaming industry is the ability to build a brand’s image in a way that resonates with the target audience. Virtual influencers can be designed and styled to fit the theme and aesthetic of the video game being promoted. This creates a stronger and more impactful connection between the brand and its target audience, leading to increased engagement and sales.

Virtual influencer marketing has proven to be a highly effective marketing strategy in the gaming industry. Through the use of virtual influencers, video game developers and publishers are able to reach and engage with their target audience in new and impactful ways. By customizing virtual influencers to fit the theme and aesthetic of the video game being promoted, brands can build a stronger and more meaningful connection with their target audience. The use of virtual influencers in the gaming industry provides several benefits compared to traditional influencer marketing, including cost efficiency, targeted reach, and the ability to build a brand’s image in a way that resonates with the target audience. As the gaming industry continues to evolve, it is likely that the use of virtual influencers will become increasingly prevalent and impactful.

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