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AI versus humans: Virtual models are posing competition to ‘real’ influencers

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Social media influencers have adopted artificial intelligence to enhance their content, but they now face increasing rivalry from AI-created personalities on platforms like Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube.

AI-created personalities on social media platforms refer to virtual characters or influencers that are designed and managed using artificial intelligence technology. These digital personas can be created to look and behave like real people, with unique personalities and appearances. They often have their own profiles on platforms like Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube, where they post content similar to that of human influencers. 

Photo courtesy: Instagram/@fit_aitana

AI-created personalities can interact with users, produce videos, photos, and other content, and even engage in marketing and advertising campaigns. They are typically managed by companies or creators who use AI and other digital tools to shape and guide their actions and brand image.

Photo courtesy: Instagram/@fit_aitana

With her pink hair and posing in lingerie, swimsuits, or gym outfits, Aitana Lopez has amassed over 300,000 Instagram followers and is known as a “gamer at heart” and “fitness enthusiast” — though she’s actually not a real person. She was developed by The Clueless, a Barcelona-based firm that bills itself as an “AI modeling agency” managed by “visionaries aiming to reshape the influencer landscape.” Sofia Novales, project manager at The Clueless, explained that the “increasing expenses linked to human influencers” contributed to the agency’s formation.

Photo courtesy: Instagram/@fit_aitana

“The advantages lie in unparalleled creative control, allowing seamless decision-making on image, fashion, and aesthetics without the need for physical photoshoots,” Novales reiterated. 

AI-created personalities on social media platforms have both advantages and disadvantages for the creators and the audience. Here’s an overview of the pros and cons:

Pros:

  1. Consistency: AI personalities can consistently post content without breaks, ensuring a steady and reliable flow of posts.
  2. Cost-Effective: Over time, managing AI personalities can be more cost-effective compared to paying human influencers, who may require higher fees for their services.
  3. Control: Creators have complete control over the AI’s appearance, behavior, and actions, allowing for precise branding and messaging.
  4. Scalability: AI personalities can easily be scaled up or down based on demand, enabling rapid adaptation to market trends.
  5. No Human Limitations: AI personalities don’t require breaks, vacations, or time off, and can be designed to engage with audiences at any time.
  6. Creative Flexibility: AI allows for the creation of unique characters and narratives that can stand out in the social media landscape.
Photo courtesy: Instagram/@fit_aitana

Cons:

  1. Authenticity Concerns: Audiences may find it challenging to connect with AI personalities, knowing they are not real individuals, which could lead to a lack of genuine engagement.
  2. Ethical Issues: The use of AI personalities raises ethical questions about transparency and authenticity in influencer marketing.
  3. Dependence on Technology: Technical issues or limitations in AI systems could disrupt the performance of AI personalities.
  4. Impact on Human Influencers: The rise of AI personalities may reduce opportunities for human influencers and affect their livelihoods.
  5. Risk of Misinformation: AI personalities may unintentionally spread false information if not carefully managed and vetted.
  6. Lack of Human Emotion: AI lacks the genuine emotions and experiences of human influencers, which can affect the relatability and appeal of the content.
Photo courtesy: Instagram/@fit_aitana

It should be noted that the use of AI sportscasters by a TV network recently to deliver sports news became controversial and garnered various debates, arguments, and engagements on social media.

*Cover Photo/Thumbnail Photo: Instagram/@fit_aitana

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