MY virtual influencer Embun Rysa emerges to spread hope during MCO

Following AirAsia's Miss AVA and PUMA's Maya, another new virtual influencer named Embun Rysa (Dew) has emerged in Malaysia. Created by The Clan and Experiential Design Team (EDT), the team wanted to connect with audiences via an influencer that can be anywhere doing anything. Embun Rysa can be found on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, Snapchat and LinkedIn.

Creative chief of The Clan, Casey Loh, told A+M that with the Movement Control Order (MCO) and COVID-19 impacting brands and agencies in their collaborations with real life influencers, Embun Rysa "is even more relevant because she can go wherever she wants". He added that she is also the inspiration the world needs to help think of a time when it is safe to go out and be with anybody. 

"In fact, when she's in full form, we will even be able to get her to engage with the audience by hosting live Q&A sessions, interviews and through on-ground engagements as well," he added.

Embun Rysa mainly targets young Millennials who understand the humour and entertainment value in following her. In times like this, Loh said she is the perfect ambassador for tolerance, patience and hope. In a recent post, she tried to spread the message of positivity by telling consumers that one day, everyone will be able to return to the thrilling lives they have experienced prior to the pandemic and spend time with family and friends. "For now, send us your love and affection. Peace!!" she added.

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Aged 24 years old, Embun Rysa's hijab style various according to different occasions. She advocates for human and animal rights, as well as sustainable living and social distancing. Among her list of characteristics include modest, strong, brave, artistic, adventurous and witty. She also embodies values such as integrity, honesty, gracefulness, persistence and optimism. According to The Clan and EDT, Embun Rysa enjoys travelling, PUBG, music, movies, TV shows, fashion and books, among others. Her activities during the MCO revolves around subjects she advocates - mental health, anxiety, importance of sleep, keeping in contact via digital platforms, and self-enriching activities such as games, movies and baking.

To build her personality, the team focused on developing her love for travel, along with what motivates and complements her wanderlust tendencies. The team gave Embun Rysa three different styles - island edition, modest glamorous and work from home.

When it came to designing Embun Rysa, Loh said the challenge was identifying with her as a virtual asset instead of a real person. "We did not want to create an uncanny valley effect with her, so she has a bit more digital identity than most," he said. Loh added that she is also "pretty meta" about it too, with her description reading "I'm not real but I'm alive". Both The Clan and EDT aim to partner with brands and clients that identify with her traits to create quality posts to engage consumers. 

While she is a virtual influencer, Loh said the team believes her posts can go beyond the ordinary as she is able to deep dive into any product category in new and bizarre ways, simply because Embun Rysa acknowledges that she is virtual.

"We have not approached any brands or clients yet until we have proven that she can engage with different audiences. But we have identified a few clients or categories that she can really be loyal to in the coming weeks," he explained.

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