Since last update, I created two more posts. First is a Thanksgiving post, since I wanted her to have some sort of recognition of real-life events and holidays to help make her seem less virtually isolated. Here’s the post:
I hashtagged it #Food, #Thanksgiving, #Holiday, #Cozy, and #Aesthetic. It got three likes, two of which were from followers and the other an auto-like from Georgetown’s official account. I think I did an alright job at making this one look realistic, though I had a lot more trouble with that on the next one, which shows that Natalie is a student. I spent a really long time shading, color correcting, and fixing angles and I still could not figure out how to make Natalie look less artificial in the first post:
I hashtagged this one, which has one like from a follower so far, #College, #University, #FinalsWeek, #Studygram, #Organization, and #Student. I also made sure to include alt text on all the images in both posts for accessibility purposes.
In addition to creating the posts, I spent time this week creating a Facebook account and joining the Virtual Beings group, linking the account to the @buggz.kono Instagram, and linking the Instagram account feed to this website as a widget, which is visible from the main page.
Overall, I am surprised that the Instagram account did not gain more traction from the hashtags and general image appeal, but it was a fun experiment. I’ve never been very active on social media, so it was also different for me to feel like I had to keep up with my posts. While I don’t think I’ll be continuing this project past the semester, I am glad to have had the experience and have proven the fact that it doesn’t take a whole company to create a virtual influencer.