Down Syndrome International
Client: Down Syndrome International
Product: Down Syndrome International
Media: Social Media
Date Of Campaign: 05/13/2022
Background: The global investment into the metaverse doubled to $120 billion in 2022. Central to this is the rise of virtual influencers who are fast dominating the face of the digital world from gaming to social media. Yet out of the 200+ virtual influencers on Instagram, not a single one represented the disability community.Down Syndrome International (DSI) wanted to drive awareness and relevance with young people globally, and change the digital landscape to make it inclusive for the next generation. As a charity dedicated to enriching the lives of people with Down Syndrome, DSI saw that increasingly more of their beneficiary's time was spent in the digital realm, yet there was very little visibility of people with disabilities or Down Syndrome there.DSI set out to prove that diversity is possible in the virtual world, and provoke a conversation around the future of inclusion.
Idea: The solution was Kami - the world's first virtual influencer with Down Syndrome. Kami was created to represent the Down Syndrome community in the virtual world, reflecting the typical characteristics and behaviours of young women with the condition.To ensure Kami was authentic to the group of people she represented, every part of her design and story was co-created by a group of 100 young women with Down Syndrome from 16 different countries. Real-life global Down Syndrome icon and Gucci model Ellie Goldstien lead the collective of women as Executive Producer, giving Kami an authentic voice from a real influencer.With traditional virtual influencers rising in popularity with young people globally, Kami disrupted the sea of sameness and turned the conversation from perfection to inclusivity. Kami's existence provoked a bigger conversation around the importance of protecting diversity in the virtual world.Kami's launch was covered by global press in May with an exclusive from leading marketing title AdWeek and mass coverage from top global news sites including Newsweek, The Daily Mail, Campaign, Yahoo, Ability Today, and AdAge.In the months after launch, conversations around Kami continued to garner press through strategic collaboration.- Guest of honour and the first virtual model with a disability present at Brazil Immersive Fashion Week 2022.- Collaborated with world renowned virtual fashion house Studio Acci in Portugal to create the first virtual fashion line designed by people with Down Syndrome.- Partnered Vogue photographer Gabriel DeSante to launch the first pocket-metaverse dedicated to Down Syndrome awareness.- Collaborated with Down Syndrome artist/influencer Charlie French, and model Lauren Hilaire- Featured on the 'Defeating Disability' podcast- Key Speaker at Milan-based Influencer Marketing Conference in Nov-Key Speaker at Ad Age Social Media Conference in Sept.
Results: Tier 1: Media OutputsThe launch of Kami generated earned media across global and regional business, daily news, popular culture, lifestyle, tech, trade, design and AI publications that includes coverage from news sites such as Newsweek, The Daily Mail, Dazed, Elle, Models of Diversity, Fraiches, Virtual Humans, Muse by Clio, Taxi, Campaign Brief Asia, Adweek, Campaign, Yahoo, Ability Today, L'Observatoire Beauty, and Editor's Pick on AdAge.Content generated by Kami has been shared organically by globally recognised influencers like @shudu.gram (239k), @grace_strobel (116k), and @elliejg16_zebedeemodel (85.4k).Media interest in Kami and her creators extended to interview requests from prominent publications including Dazed Beauty, Elle Magazine UK, The UnSeen Beauty, Purple Goat Agency, FLU Agency Italy, and Wix.com.Tier 2: Target Audience Outcomes- Kami resonated inside and outside the disability community, being shared organically in 16 languages.- Provoked three separate Youtube debates- Kami activated her community: three custom wearables for Kami, fan art from Nigeria and South Africa, a pocket-metaverse designed by a fan, a partnership with renowned choreographer Matt Steffanina (30M followers) is in productionTier 3: Business Outcomes- 10M US in earned media across global, regional business, daily news, popular culture, lifestyle, tech, design and AI publications.- 1 of 35 verified virtual influencers on Instagram, first virtual influencer with a disability to be verified on Instagram- Created a long-term working partnership with DSA Singapore for paid work for Down Syndrome models- 20k USD work contract with Down Syndrome model Ellie Goldstien