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Carvana gifts AI-generated video histories to car-owning customers

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“AI is so topical right now, so it’s cool to take our own swing at it,” said Ryan Keeton, co-founder of Carvana and its chief brand officer.

Carvana’s use of AI hinged on its pool of images for each car that it sells, which was digitally rendered using computer vision to create 3D copies for each owner’s video. Computer vision is a kind of artificial intelligence in which systems derive information from images and videos.

AI also was used to generate supplementary images that corresponded to unique aspects of each video, such as time of the year and cultural moments, as well as customize the voiceover. Much of the technology was proprietary, Keeton said, although some publicly available models were also used. Video production service 1stAveMachine collaborated on the campaign.

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Some 1.3 million Carvana owners will receive an email with their unique video, Keeton said. While no larger advertising push will fuel the campaign, dubbed “Joyride,” Carvana will promote it via social media, as well as encourage owners to post their videos on their own social channels.

“The biggest thing is having someone advocate for your brand,” said Keeton, alluding to how the effort contrasts with traditional marketing approaches that center promotion from the brand’s side.

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