This might surprise you, but when it comes to news and current affairs I only keep a mild interest in the daily goings-on. My mornings don’t start and my nights don’t end in front of the TV watching news programs or scrolling through news/ current affairs sites. I may scroll through Facebook or LinkedIn and check my updates, but if I don’t see somebody post about an issue on their page (or I don’t receive a message from somebody in relation to said issue) then I take the “need to know” approach.
For example, I didn’t really think of COVID as something beyond “that virus going on in China” until the beginning of March 2020. The world is a big place, and how often do we hear of such illnesses or outbreaks taking place somewhere far away that result in more to us than temporary changes to airport security?
Likewise, the death of Queen Elizabeth II was something I only became aware of last year when (the morning of the news) a friend messaged me to a link that mentioned the passing of QE11 in it.
Point is, we live in an age of information saturation, so when it comes down to a lot of world events, adopting the “need to know” approach saves me time and energy. After all, I’m not paid to debate topics online, nor am I a member of a current affairs panel where I’m expected to opine on the news of the day. And generally speaking, the key news filters through to me anyway.
Introducing: Chat GPT (or copywriting Armageddon, apparently)
So it may (or may not) surprise you to learn that (while aware of the advances in A.I writing tools and even using tools like Grammarly or Headline Analyzer myself from time to time) I first found out about Chat GPT through the sudden volume of posts I saw on Facebook, people sharing these “hilarious” A.I-generated answers to questions that (to be fair) were often loaded ones. Then there were friends messaging me the results they got from asking specific questions, which to me always sounded curiously like a small child using the vocabulary of an adult professor: eloquent in execution yet vague in reasoning. There were a couple that made me smile, but (to date) nothing that made me burst out laughing. Maybe it’s the knowledge that the passage I’m reading has been artificially generated, brought into existence by an algorithm that can’t think for itself?
Then there are the business events I’ve attended over the past couple of months, both in person and online. Plenty of people have talked about Chat GPT and (as you can imagine) some have asked for my views. Is it something we should be concerned about?
Before I peel back the curtain and reveal how I really think of this development and the future it poses, I thought I’d first do some digging online and see what other people are saying about this new development in A.I info technology:
What People Are Saying:
“All (ChatGPT) can do is spit out words. There are going to be some people who are like ‘Great, I never have to hire another copywriter I’m going to use GPT. I never have to hire another designer I’m just going to use A.I.’ Of course there are. There are some people who want business to be easy, there are some people who want to be lazy about it, trying to use Chat GPT for things as integral to your business as the actual messaging? It’s lazy and misguided. The work requires strategy and that mix of creativity and ChatGPT can’t do either of those things”
“If you’re looking for high-quality, personalized content that can help you stand out from the crowd, a human copywriter may be the better choice. On the other hand, if you’re looking for a fast, cost-effective solution for producing large volumes of content, Chat GPT may be the way to go.”
THE RISE OF AI-POWERED CONTENT CREATION: CHAT GPT VS. HUMAN COPYWRITERS, Local Leap, February 6 2023
“I don’t claim any superior insight, just a realization that if a company can improve its bottom line by cutting costs in its supply chain, it will. Any sentimental attachment to human-created content is sure to be quickly overridden, I suspect, by the economic argument. After all, AI is super-fast labor that doesn’t eat, sleep, complain or take holidays.”
I’m a copywriter. I’m pretty sure artificial intelligence is going to take my job, Henry Williams, The Guardian, 24 January 2023
“…integrity and artistry of authorship have a higher value over the volume of content. Though GPT is evolving at a scary pace, the current version isn’t capable of anything beyond volume and is heavily dependent on the inputs …. i.e. Garbage in garbage out.”
Ash Roy, discussing Chat GPT here
“It is unlikely that ChatGPT or any other language model will replace copywriters anytime in the near future. While ChatGPT and other language models are capable of generating responses to questions and comments in a variety of different contexts, they are not yet advanced enough to fully replace the creativity, originality, and unique perspective that a human copywriter brings to their work. Additionally, writing for marketing and advertising purposes often requires a deep understanding of the target audience and a strong ability to persuade, which are skills that are difficult for a language model to replicate”
What could ChatGPT mean for copywriters?, Katie Hicks, marketingbrew.com, December 17 2022
“By leveraging the power of ChatGPT’s algorithms, copywriters can reduce errors, increase accuracy and create better content faster than ever before. However, as an automated tool, it will never be able to completely replicate the creativity and skill required by a talented human writer.”
ChatGPT and Copywriting – The End of Human Writers?, Carmine Mastropierro
“How do you explain to A.I the passion a certain group of people have for their local sports club, and how do you get AI to write targeting the supercharged emotions of that group of sports fans? Or just the fact that the CEO of your company has a vendetta on the CEO of another company and wants their copy to take some subtle jabs at that other company the way many companies have done through the years with their guerrilla marketing – how do you explain dynamic that to A.I? Whatever it is, whatever these dynamics are and whatever these situations are, it’s a lot easier to explain that to a person.”
What Is Chat GPT REALLY Good For?
There’s any number of articles and videos that explain how Chat GPT works, so I’m not going to waste time re-examining these details when there’s an abundance of more technical information (and it is sound technical information) available to you already and on tap.
What Chat GPT does is it uses the algorithm to understand the question you ask and then (relying on keywords) compiles an answer, combing through a database of online information in the blink of an eye. Imagine, if you will, going into a library and asking the librarian for information on a topic and they were able to subconsciously tap into all the books of the world in all the libraries of the world, and provide you with an answer based on compilation.
Likewise, Chat GPT is a helpful tool for ironing out grammatical errors in your copy and/ or improve your sentence structuring. In this regard, it works in similar fashion to existing tools like Grammarly or Headline Analyzer.
Chat GPT is good for people whose #1 priorities are efficiency and accuracy. If you want content without mistakes or information for research and you want it fast- Chat GPT is your tool of choice. However, with this speed and convenience comes limitations…
Chat GPT Can’t Replace YOU
Years ago during a personal development course, the presenter was explaining how to become more engaging as a speaker, whether delivering a presentation before a boardroom or telling a story to people at a party. He said (and I am paraphrasing here just a tad): Does listening to you feel as if I’m getting a candid understanding of what it means to be you, or is talking to you like going to Google?
This best sums up why (to answer the question left hanging at the very start): No, I’m not concerned about Chat GPT or A.I, as a copywriter. The technology available to us can be tailored, but it’s coded in the impersonal. It’s how we use it that makes it personal.
Plenty of paintbrushes available, stacks of art sets from the same manufacturer with the same colours. But what we do with those tools- what we use as a canvas, how we apply those paints, the colours we choose or choose in the greatest quantity, why we paint and how we want somebody else to feel when they look at the end result of this- that is up to YOU. The individual. The difference between the flooring in a functionally-designed, bland government building and Michaelangelo’s David is the intention behind the chiselling of stone. The difference between an original Picasso and a paint-by-numbers (although they both feature the same platforms/ mediums) is what the artist does with the tools, their level of skill and the originality of the finished piece.
Are you the FIAT of your industry or the Ferrari?
When your target audience is hungry, do they seek Michelin Stars or McDonald’s?
While technology changes and speeds up/ simplifies some processes, human nature stays the same. On many a fundamental level, your audience hasn’t changed. They still have:
- Questions they want answered.
- Problems they want solutions to.
- Issues costing them time, money, sleep and peace of mind.
- A burning desire for something to get rid of this blockage and help them travel a little smoother.
- A burning desire for someone to get rid of this blockage and help them travel a little smoother.
Your audience will happily invest even more if you can offer this plus something attractively unique. People want human connection, trust is still the most integral part of building a community and helping business to flow smoothly. The lower the trust, the more roadblocks people put up as a defence mechanism. Chat GPT, after all, is simply a program, an algorithm. It’s brilliant at knowing what to think, but it can only define the truth by what we tell it, rather than a personal estimate of that truth. How to think is still left up to us.
When it comes to copywriting, the key is still to be YOUnique.
If you’d love to discover your unique voice, your own individual mark that sells your business when it comes to your copy strategy, let’s talk: