irtual influencers have acclimated to pandemic life along with the rest of the world. Gloves, masks, zoom calls, digital events, and makeshift parties are the new normal, even for virtual influencers, as we wait for the pandemic to pass.
During this global quarantine, people spend disproportionately more time consuming media to stay connected, informed, and entertained. Currently, on social media, an array of reaction-based content related to coronavirus and quarantine dominates, especially among brands and influencers.
We set out to research how virtual influencers, specifically, react to the onset of COVID-19. Here's what we found – 9 virtual influencer reactions to Coronavirus:
1. Knox Frost
The World Health Organization struck a partnership with Atlanta-based Knox Frost, a top virtual influencer. News coverage of the partnership reveals Knox hopes to, through the partnership, inspire his 1M+ Gen-Z followers to combat COVID-19 in any way they can. In a call-to-arms-style caption, Knox asks his fans to help through donations, awareness, and respect of official health guidelines, such as upholding social distancing and the regular washing of hands.
Knox also details the various ways donations will be spent by WHO, further encouraging fans to donate. This partnership received global coverage by AdWeek, AdAge, Mashable, BuzzFeed, CNBC, DAZED, Insider, and more, re-affirming that when your brand partners with a top virtual influencer, you access new, innovative PR opportunities.
Global model Noonoouri never shys away from voicing her support for causes she believes in, and the current coronavirus climate is no match for her activism. Noonoouri signed the #EndTheTrade petition, a coalition to end the commercial trading and selling of wild terrestrial animals for human consumption. The movement seeks to prevent another COVID-19-like pandemic from spreading in the future. The movement is sponsored by organizations such as Wild Aid, Global Wildlife Conservation, Conservation International, and more.
Additionally, Noonoouri posed in Patou attire made for the French fashion brand’s #PatouGether campaign. Patou pledges to donate 100% of proceeds from the sale of limited edition, white sweatshirts and black t-shirts to the World Health Organization’s COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund.
3. FN MEKA
Clad in a full-body Hazmat suit, FNMEKA posed in one of the many aisles devoid of toilet paper, as the frightened masses have taken to hoarding the common household item. He questioned why, of all items, people want to horde toilet paper. Another time, MEKA took to the subway wearing the same outfit, pondering whether or not robots are susceptible to the disease.
In each post, MEKA ends his captions by engaging with fans through coronavirus specific questions, such as if the disease has reached their city or if they are in possession of any toilet paper. These now-barren spaces once flowed with products or people, much to MEKA’s dismay.
4. Shy Yume
Porn site xHamster understands that quarantine can be more than just frightening for some people; it can also be lonely. Luckily, resident dream-girl Shy Yume was available to deliver a little surprise for xHamster visitors. The crowdsourced virtual influencer, whom we sat down to chat with in February, shared with fans that due to this difficult time, her creators were offering one free virtual date with a real model to help combat quarantine loneliness.
5. Qai Qai
Baby doll Qai Qai spent some time in self-isolation creating a “Prevention Playlist” to help people fight boredom while also providing useful tips for coronavirus prevention. The playlist consists of eight songs which Qai Qai shared on Instagram in two separate posts. The title of each chosen track serves as a suggestion for successful COVID-19 prevention and includes animations of Qai Qai putting her tips into practice, along with short elaborations on the song’s significance.
6. Imma Gram
Imma Gram appeared in the video for kidzfrmnowhere’s #stayhome project. Kidzfrmnowhere is a photography, film, and design studio based out of Tokyo, Japan that sought video submissions from fans showing how they pass time in quarantine. In the clip featuring Imma, she plays with her dog indoors. Imma was the only virtual influencer to make an appearance in the project.
In typical 420-friendly fashion, Epiphenus shared a heady take on social distancing for his followers. In a post, he and a friend stand on opposite ends of a PVC pipe with a joint emerging from an opening between them. The words “How to share a joint with the homie on 4/20 using social distancing” appear at the top of the photo.
Increasingly, social media users incorporate coronavirus culture into the day-to-day activities they would post about anyways—in Epiphenus’ case, the 4/20 post he undoubtedly would’ve posted regardless of circumstance overlapped with the current call to social distance.
8. Hatsune Miku
For Hatsune Miku fans seeking a creative way to pass the time during quarantine, the vocaloid megastar created the Miku Expo Stay Home Project. Fans get free access to the Let’s Paint 2.0 website to show their creativity by coloring a blank 3D model of Hatsune however they please. Participants can share their final design with the hashtag #StayHomeWithMyMIKU to have their artwork potentially featured in a recap video of the project by Crypton Future Media.
Also, fans are invited to create an original song using Crypton’s Vocaloid software and submit it for the Miku Stay Home Mini Song Contest. People from all countries are eligible to enter through May 13th. All entries will be compiled into a playlist on Hatsune’s Soundcloud, and the winning submission will be used as the background music for the #StayHomeWithMYMIKU recap video.
9. Bee Influencer
For those feeling the emotional and mental tax of elongated self-isolation, Bee Influencer’s Instagram is a great place to turn for a dose of positivity. Throughout quarantine, he’s sharing an optimistic outlook with fans. Whether it’s through a joke at his own expense about how quarantine isn’t great for his figure, sharing how working out has greatly helped him pass the time during lockdown, or basking in the opportunity to lounge around and be cozy, Bee Influencer remains an uplifting online presence during a time of declining mental wellness.
Bee consistently engages with fans, sending a message that keeping morale high is important to combat the changes brought on by coronavirus, an especially important topic right now during Mental Health Awareness month.