Influencer communication using synthetic media

Synthetic media are partially or entirely computer-generated content, such as texts, articles, photos and videos. They are characterized by their highly realistic and immersive nature, often challenging to distinguish from real media. Virtual characters can also be created – as virtual influencers, some have already amassed millions of followers on social media.

To analyze the potential of synthetic media in corporate communication, a research project was conducted under the leadership of Stefan Stieglitz and Sünje Clausen (University of Potsdam) in collaboration with Sanofi. The virtual character ‘Sam’ was developed, providing insights into the digitization of the healthcare industry on Sanofi Germany’s Instagram channel.

The goal was to better understand the advantages and disadvantages of such a virtual character for communication practices.