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Artificial Intelligence 9 min read

AI Social Media Influencer: A Smart Marketing Move?

Sarah Edwards photo

Written by Sarah Edwards

Content Writer @ Galactic Fed

Dallin Porter photo

Expert reviewed by Dallin Porter

Marketing Director @ Galactic Fed

Published 30 Aug 2023

If there are two phenomena that have taken over the world in the last few years, it’s definitely artificial intelligence and social media influencer marketing. Both are novel ideas that have ignited intense debate. But did you know you could combine the two to create an AI social media influencer?

With social media’s strong foothold in society and AI getting better and more human-like with each passing day, it was only a matter of time before marketing professionals began to wonder what it would be like to marry these concepts. It has left many asking the question: can leveraging AI and social media together create even more marketing success?

If this is what has been on your mind lately, keep reading to learn how marketers are navigating the success and challenges of AI-driven social media influence. 

What Is an AI Social Media Influencer?

In simple terms, an AI social media influencer is a virtual personality that partners with brands to help people discover and buy their products.

For instance, imagine finding an Instagram account you love. The person behind the account seems to share so many of your personal values, right down to wearing the same sustainable clothing brands. They’re quirky, funny, and highly engaging on live streams. And they’re always interactive in the comments, never hesitating to answer your questions if you’re wondering about a product they’re promoting.

Now, suppose that you find out that this person you’ve grown to admire and respect so much isn’t even human. Instead, they’re a virtual personality created through the power of AI and CGI technology. At this point, you’re likely intrigued and probably have a lot of questions. Welcome to the world of the AI social media influencer.

If you think this is only the future of marketing, think again. It’s already happening. Some AI-powered social media influencers have already amassed millions more followers than some of the most well-known humans will ever have. In this next section, we’ll dive into what makes people follow AI influencers and how brands are benefitting from the newest marketing tactic to hit social media.

Why Brands Love AI Social Media Influencers

As a marketer, you may be wondering why social media users would follow an AI-generated influencer in the first place — much less allow that virtual person to influence their buying decisions. 

While society may not yet have a fully formed answer to this question, the truth is that many people are used to interacting with fantasy characters. Virtual worlds are nothing new, and AI influencers may very well just be the next chapter.

Regardless of why people love AI influencers, there are some distinct motivations driving brands and marketing teams to consider creating their own:

They’re Perfect

There’s no getting around the fact that humans make mistakes. Unfortunately, if they make them while promoting your brand, it can have serious consequences for your brand image. 

Brands don’t have to worry about that when dealing with virtual influencers. You control all their decisions, so you never have to be concerned about human error impacting your campaign.

Curated Personalities

When searching for human social media influencers to partner with, you must ensure that the person you’re working with shares your brand values. Virtual influencers make this so easy because you’re the person creating their personality. Everything they do, say, and post is perfectly curated to showcase a specific set of characteristics that align perfectly with your branding. 

There’s No Red Tape

Everyone wants to work with the best social media influencers. The problem is that many have airtight legal representation that won’t let you get anywhere near them unless you meet high-level criteria. 

AI influencers eliminate this red tape and level the playing field when it comes to influencer access. If you can’t get an influencer on the phone, you can simply create your own. 

AI Influencers: How Brands and Marketers Benefit From the Trend

Knowing that there are millions of people around the world who are clearly into virtual influencers, marketers and brands are definitely finding ways to benefit. Here are just a few of the ways that AI social media influencers are boosting branding and marketing campaigns.


Having an AI-powered virtual influencer can help boost your brand image in the eyes of the tech-conscious consumer. Artificial intelligence, machine learning, and talk of “the metaverse” is all the rage. 

People are certainly fascinated by these things, and having your brand associated with them can put you in the center of the conversation. As a result, you may enjoy some increased brand awareness.

Better Engagement

When it comes to any social media influencer campaign, engagement is certainly the holy grail of key performance indicators. When an audience is engaged, they’re more likely to buy. While not everyone is going to be into virtual influencers, there’s clearly an audience out there. Many virtual influencer posts get tons of engagement, even if it’s just out of curiosity. 

Controlling the Narrative

If you choose to partner with an AI social media influencer, your team will reap the benefit of getting to control the narrative from end to end. While the marketing team running the account will have to take character consistency into consideration, you’ll likely have a lot more creative freedom and control than you would if you were working with a real person.

A New Horizon 

Gen Z is much more comfortable interacting through technology than previous generations. AI social media influencers can leverage this fact to create characters and worlds that this generation can connect with much more easily than their millennial counterparts.

The Challenges of Embracing AI Social Media Influencers

While the world of AI social media influencers is new and exciting, it does come with its fair share of challenges.

First, brands are going to have to overcome some people’s initial hesitation to follow an influencer they know isn’t real. While Gen Z might be very accepting of virtual influencers, there is still a significant population of people who are wary of this phenomenon. Brands are going to have to put in the work to help people connect with the virtual characters they have created and take specific action to build trust.

Additionally, many people still have privacy concerns when it comes to interacting with AI-based tools. They want to know how their data is being used and whether they need to worry about protecting themselves from any possible negative consequences of AI technology. Marketers are going to have to think deeply about how to assure people that AI is safe to interact with.

Finally, it’s important that marketers understand how the changing values of the next generation might affect how they use AI social media influencers. Studies have shown that Gen Z values authenticity more than any other generation. 

Many of them are leaving the idea of the perfectly curated social media profile behind and embracing the messiness of real life. The rise of user-generated brand content is an outgrowth of this.

As a marketer, how can you leverage the power of AI influencers while still addressing the cultural shift taking place? As Gen Z steps into the workforce and gains buying power, it’s a consideration marketing professionals will no doubt have to grapple with. 

Best Practices and Considerations for Brands Using AI Influencer Campaigns

AI influencer marketing carries a lot of potential when done right. Here are just a few tips to help you avoid some common pitfalls when curating your virtual influencer profile:

  • Don’t abandon human influencers just yet; take it slow when you’re starting out
  • Take time to observe how other brands are doing it and mimic their tactics
  • Consider creating an immersive virtual universe around your character
  • Think about how you will promote your virtual influencer in the offline world

If you take the time to consider how you can maintain an authentic connection with your audience, there’s no limit to how far you can take this new marketing method.

AI and Social Media: Preparing for the Virtual Future

It’s important for all marketers to remember that AI-powered influencer marketing is still a new concept. It’s worth considering whether it’s right for your brand, but don’t expect to be perfect at it right away. 

You must realize that you and your audience are learning this landscape together. There will be challenges, but you never know where this unique road could lead. As society continues its quest for digital transformation, getting in on the trend of AI social media influencers now will certainly prepare your brand for an increasingly virtual future.

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Sarah Edwards photo

Sarah Edwards

Content Writer @ Galactic Fed