Creative & Tech

National Geographic Creates “Genius” Albert Einstein Chatbot Ahead of March for Science

April 21, 2017

Albert Einstein once said that “science can only flourish in an atmosphere of free speech.” In time for the March for Science, this Saturday, April 22, National Geographic is bringing Einstein back to life via a Facebook Messenger chatbot to celebrate their new original series Genius. The chatbot builds on the channel’s broader efforts at the March which will include a free, branded WiFi network and a recharging tent for marchers. In all, the activation aims to inspire March for Science participants, expose them to the lesser known side of Albert Einstein and empower them to share the March’s important message.

Premiering April 25, Genius celebrates the lesser known life and provocations of Albert Einstein. To drive awareness and keep people engaged throughout the series, National Geographic worked with 360i to bring the genius himself back to life through a Facebook Messenger chatbot. Communicating in Einstein’s tone of voice, the chatbot creates an immersive messaging experience where fans can discover his lesser known stories through unique, custom content in the form texts, images and gifs. Once users subscribe, the chatbot will remind them to tune in, sending fans fun and interesting facts about each episode.

To create a more authentic, customized experience, National Geographic enlisted a conversational chatbot, that understands natural text input and is free flowing, responding based on intent, context and memory. The customized chat experience is based on the relationship memory between the chatbot and the users.

At the march itself, National Geographic will provide free WiFi to marchers that will unlock after they watch a short Genius video depicting Einstein at his most rebellious. A Genius-branded recharging tent will provide marchers with a place to relax, charge their phones and watch clips from the highly anticipated series. In reminding marchers of Einstein’s unwavering belief in truth, fact and science, the fully-integrated campaign aims to support the tens of thousands of people expected to participate.

The campaign will be further supported with targeted social posts for users in the D.C. area, contextual banner ads, programmatic buying, a special integration with the iconic New York Times Crossword puzzle and paid social across Nat Geo’s Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat channels.

You can get chatting with Einstein here:, and tune into the Genius premiere on National Geographic on Tuesday, April 25 and 9/8c.