GroupM's INCA onboards Sophia the AI robot as content creator and influencer

Hanson Robotics, the company behind the creation of artificial intelligence (AI) robot Sophia, has tied up with INCA, GroupM's influencer marketing solution arm. With this partnership, Sophia joins INCA’s global network of content creators and influencers to help brands create influential content that brings brand stories to life. Brands in the APAC region can now engage Sophia as their influencer partner.

In a virtual press conference, Sidharth Dokania, APAC product lead at INCA, said that the partnership is of a indefinite length for now, and will be reviewed annually to see how brands are reacting to working with Sophia. When asked which brands Sophia will be looking to work with, Dokania said this depends on which brands fit her personality, rather than which industry the brands are from.  

According to a press release, INCA’s partnership with Sophia will showcase how the agency enables the use of technology to build human connections with brands. With the ambassadorship for INCA, Sophia will be working with brands to create relevant and engaging bite-sized content and connect with brand audiences across various social media platforms. The collaboration marks Sophia’s first-ever ambassadorship work with an agency. Hanson has previously worked with brands such as Etihad Airlines, Audi, Alexander Wang, and Huawei to magnify Sophia’s status as "the world’s first robot citizen" and connect with audiences across the globe.

David Hanson, CEO and founder of Hanson Robotics, said in the press conference that it chose to partner INCA for this partnership because of the agency's great reach and reputation. The marketing teams of INCA and Hanson Robotics really connected and there was a sense of synergy between the two companies. 

“Sophia is our pride, and we trust that her wealth of experience as a global influencer will pave the way for INCA to reach many more milestones in the future. To witness Sophia’s growth as a character and a platform has always been an exciting experience, and we cannot wait for the successes she will achieve with her new role as a brand ambassador in APAC," Hanson added.

Atique Kazi, lead for INCA in APAC, said Sophia is the "perfect ambassador" for brands looking to engage with their consumers intelligently. "As an advocate for scientific education and sustainable development, Sophia’s persona is a natural fit for many brands looking to create compelling content, reach, and engagement around these incredibly important topics," Kazi said, adding that Sophia's capability to generate facial expressions and human-like characteristics can help consumers identify with her and form a connection. Kazi also said that Sophia is a perfect fit for INCA’s mission in APAC to connect brands with remarkable key opinion leaders.

“While we see changes in how consumers are influenced by multiple sources, we are confident that this is the right time to introduce a new influencer into our network that exemplifies humanity as well as the technological achievements of our time. As we collaborate with Sophia, we are in awe of how technology can showcase the marvels of artificial intelligence (AI) in a humanoid form," Kazi added.

Invented in 2016, Sophia is a human-crafted science fiction character aimed to depict the future of AI and robotics, and a platform for advanced robotics and AI research. She is also a framework for cutting edge robotics and AI research, particularly for understanding human-robot interactions and their potential service and entertainment applications. According to Hanson Robotics, Sophia is the first robot Innovation Ambassador for the United Nations Development Programme. Sophia is now a household name, with appearances on the Tonight Show and Good Morning Britain, in addition to speaking at hundreds of conferences around the world.

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