budding virtual influencer grew a fanbase of 300k+ Instagram and 260k+ Twitter followers in just a matter of months by sharing her life, photos of her cat, and details about her music career. Who is she? None other than Riot Games’ Seraphine.
While plenty of mystery surrounds Seraphine's future, a few things are confirmed. In an official statement, Riot Games describes Seraphine as a digital influencer and artist in association with their hit game, League of Legends. For months, she shared her life on social media with no concrete information about her creator. That being said, her official connection to Riot Games caused great commotion within the gaming and music industries, as fans and industry heads alike were speculating about her origins and ultimate purpose.
Seraphine first appeared on social media in late June, and has received major media attention due to that mystery surrounding her involvement with Riot Games, League of Legends, and virtual K-pop group, K/DA. The leading, currently unconfirmed rumor suggests she may be League of Legends’ next champion. A champion in League of Legends is a playable character, each possessing unique abilities. As of August 6, 2020, Riot Games released 150 playable champions with the latest release being ‘Yone the Unforgotten’ and the next-up ‘Samira the Desert Rose.'
In the coming months, we should know whether or not Seraphine is a new champion, or simply a virtual music talent existing in the League universe.
Recently, Seraphine released an acoustic cover of “Pop/Stars”, a 2018 League anthem made by K/DA, on soundcloud, a popular touchpoint with her fans. In the official statement, Riot also reveals Jasmine Clarke, Absofacto, and Kosuke Kasza craft her voice and sound. As a virtual artist moving forward, Seraphine will need to pursue collaborations to drive her life story and evolve her digital presence.
According to this recent Instagram post, she will collaborate with K/DA in producing their first album, and will even have a feature on an upcoming track. Superfans who follow her storyline on social media saw this coming, yet all are still excited about the official partnership announcement.
In regards to her social media presence, Seraphine is destroying the concept of “high engagement” by reaching numbers currently unheard of on Instagram. Her last ten Instagram posts saw an average of 35% engagement, whereas average engagement rates fall around 3-4% for most influencers, with high performing influencers seeing engagements of 10-20% at best. Her collaboration announcement with K/DA received a whopping 50% engagement rate, the highest percentage of all her posts. Yes, half of her followers liked her announcement post.
Seraphine, a virtual influencer, is seeing 10x more engagement than your average human influencer—literally. With this power, she is building a valuable media platform to amplify Riot Games' assets, like K/DA, League of Legends, and new IP.
As for her fans, they flood her mentions with art, and are invested in her daily life far more than other influencers. They love to follow her for her lifestyle, her cat, and her music taste.
She recently posted about leaving her part time job sooner than she expected, and many fans showed empathy in the comments, even leaving motivational messages for her to stay positive. This post alone reached a 34% engagement rate.
Riot’s 2020 League of Legends championships starts later this month. K/DA performed at the World Finals opening ceremony two years ago, which, coincidentally, was the last time the group released a song. The recent release of “THE BADDEST” and collab announcement with Seraphine signal K/DA + Seraphine will headline this year’s ceremony. We predict Seraphine will be announced as a champion around this time.
Although we know that Seraphine is a virtual influencer on the rise, and that she is affiliated with other League of Legends champions, there’s still so much to be learned. Questions emanating from the events of the past few months include:
- Is Seraphine the next champion?
- Is Seraphine designed to be a standalone pop-star within the League universe?
- Is Seraphine just a virtual influencer designed to advertise the game and K/DA?
- Will Seraphine rival the likes of Hatsune Miku?
We’ll get more answers as soon as LoL Worlds 2020 kicks off September 25. Regardless, Seraphine proves, once again, the raw value a virtual influencer brings to a brand at scale.