Japanese tea brand Ito En is using an AI-generated spokesmodel to promote its new line of drinks in a move that some see as safeguarding the company from potential scandal caused by a human spokesperson.
Ito En released an ad in early September for its new drink line, Oi Ocha Catechin Green Tea. The video features an unnamed spokesmodel. About a month after uploading the ad to YouTube, the company confirmed in a press release
that the spokesmodel shown in the video was created using aritifical intelligence technology
The label, too:
Besides the spokesmodel, the label Ito En used for their Oi Ocha Catechin Green Tea drink also has AI elements. The company had its designers create over a dozen designs before subjecting the draft to an AI evaluation process, according to SoraNews24
After the process, human designers looked at the labels one more time before deciding which one to use as the company’s finalized design.
How people reacted: Some Japanese users were reportedly amazed by the technology Ito En used for the ad, with some comments pointing out the lifelike features of the spokesmodel.
Others were more critical of Ito En’s use of AI, with one social media user writing, “Yeah, the technology is impressive and all, but realizing ‘This person doesn’t really exist’ makes me feel sort of empty inside.”
There is potential here: Other social media users reportedly saw potential in using an AI model as the company’s spokesmodel, such as freeing them from a possible scandal down the line.
Ito En has yet to clarify if its use of an AI model for its ad was a way to negate the risk of a potential human-caused scandal in the future, the report noted.
Feature image screen shot via 伊藤園公式チャンネル