After years of appointing some of the world’s most beautiful women as the ‘faces’ of its brand, SK-II has created its own flawless digital woman as it’s new ‘face’– Yumi.
Created in partnership with SoulMachines, a company aiming “to humanise artificial intelligence to better humanity”, Yumi is set to play a key role in helping SK-II “connect with a new generation of consumers who are yearning for more meaningful experiences with the brands they know and trust”.
SK-II chief executive Sandeep Seth said the brand is looking forward to having Yumi, “the world’s first fully autonomous digital influencer”, engage with consumers 24 hours a day.
“Yumi is more than a digital influencer,” he said.
“She is a digital human capable of interacting and engaging in ways technology hasn’t been able to do until now.
“Yumi personifies our goal to combine technology and creativity to benefit customers.
“She provides the warmth and connection of human touch in the form of a digital experience to make the overall skincare experience at home and in store more enjoyable and compelling.
“We’re looking forward to customers being able to turn to her for skincare and beauty questions at any time of the day or night.”
Soul Machines co-founder Greg Cross said the company was thrilled to work with innovative companies and brands like SK-II “who are embracing technology to humanise brands at scale”.
“Yumi will become a trusted resource to those who interact with her.
“Customers will immediately notice how easy the SoulMachine’s digital humans are to converse with and relate to once they spend time interacting with Yumi.”
He stressed that Yum is very different to other so-called ‘digital influencers’ for five main reasons:
- Autonomy: Yumi can operate at scale, autonomously of human intervention. She will express emotions and information through what is effectively a Digital Brain. Harnessing advanced artificial intelligence (AI) she can respond and interact just as a human would.
- Human: Yumi has been developed to be life-like but with a unique personality. Unlike current approaches which depend on hand-tooling and significant animation, Yumi can change dynamically to reflect the unique personality of the brand. To look good isn’t enough – the experience has to be relatable and feel great so we’ve coupled hyper-real imagery with hyper-real expressions, reactions and conversation.
- Responsive: Current digital puppets, ‘hot cartoons’ and bots are designed to follow pre-scripted animation paths but Yumi will adapt and respond based on the consumer in front of her.
- Integrated: The current generation of ‘digital influencers’ deliver little utility to consumers. By integrating Yumi with information she can deliver what consumers are looking for (help, advice, tips and tricks) all based on what they need.
- AI-powered: Until now ‘digital influencers’ have had animated scripts. The point of Yumi is she is animated because of AI – constantly learning and improving on her own.
“Yuma really is a digital influencer with a difference,” he said.
“She engages and responds as a human would.
“She won’t know everything but will know what to do when she doesn’t.
“She represents a new way for brands to be more human in engaging humans in a highly scalable way.”
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