Universal's Horror Film 'Unfriended' Promoted with Facebook Chatbot

Tim Maytom

Unfriended_gallery_04Social networking-focused horror film Unfriended has promoted itself in an innovative way, with an AI chatbot connected to Facebook that enabled fans to message one of the main characters and engage in conversations.

The messages were powered by Imperson, a platform that enables TV and movie fans to talk to virtual personas of fictional characters or celebrities, allowing for immersive and personalised marketing experiences.

Universal Studios, the makers of Unfriended, worked with Imperson to create a virtual persona for Laura Barns, a key characters who dies early in the film. Imperson's platform was then connected with Facebook, enabling fans to interact via the Messenger app.

The campaign, which van for 16 days, saw conversations span for over 33 hours on average, with 57 per cent of users who were fans of the film's Facebook page engaging in conversations with 'Laura'. 23 per cent of users who chatted with the bot shared their experience with their friends, and 61 per cent used positive keywords to describe the interaction.

"Young audiences seek more authentic ways to communicate and they value personalised and entertaining experiences that adapt in real-time," wrote Imperson in a case study on the campaign. "These characters engage in personal, one-on-one conversations with the audience using text, voice or video, just like chatting with a friend."