Back in 2016 there was the launch of Heliograf, the Washington Post’s in-house robot reporter that produced short reports for its live blog. And dozens of reporters were fired after Microsoft decided to replace them with AI software in May 2020. It seems that the last few years have seen an acceleration in the adoption of AI-powered tools in the media industry.
It’s not exactly been all smooth sailing since. Microsoft’s AI software illustrated a story about racism with a photo of the wrong member of the band Little Mix, triggering memories of AI bot Tay which went rogue a few years ago.
But GPT-3 – OpenAI’s new language generator stunned many in the industry in 2020 with its remarkably human writing abilities. Not many ‘uncanny valley’ vibes in this article written by GPT-3 for the Guardian in September 2020. Remarkably self-aware for a robot.
So What Exactly IS AI?
AI is defined by Investopedia as:
The simulation of human intelligence in machines that are programmed to think like humans and mimic their actions. The term may also be applied to any machine that exhibits traits associated with a human mind such as learning and problem-solving.
There’s a myth that AI is most definitely not your friend. Now, this is potentially true if you work in certain types of environments where your work is easily replicated. But the good news is that there’s a lot of scope for businesses, entrepreneurs and freelancers to harness AI-powered technology to increase productivity and build better-optimised processes.
In fact the likelihood is that you may even be using AI-powered tools already without realising it. Let’s look at a few ways AI can help you manage your content creation.
1. Find original new angles for your content
There are plenty of tools that can help you find topics that your customers are interested in. Keyword research tools allow you to find keywords to rank on and create more content geared towards your niche.
But time is of the essence and manual searching can be time-consuming. Instead, you can use AI -powered keyword research tools to help automate your keyword research efforts. Have a look at Twinword – which offers Latent Semantic Index (LSI) keywords (keywords that Google sees as semantically linked to a topic), along with trending keywords. This tool allows you to quickly discover user intent and pinpoint your target keywords.
Keyword Tool is another example and helps you discover keywords using Google Autocomplete – you don’t even need to create an account and you can find long-tail keywords for your content.
And Answer the Public can help those looking to expand topic options. Through this you can see questions asked by users and get insight into what topics you can use to help your audience.
2. Save time Writing Content
Writing content can drain a lot of time if it’s not your actual job. For many entrepreneurs, content creation can help improve the user journey and develop product awareness through drip email campaigns, PR, social media campaigns etc.
But in the early stages of a business, content creation can be viewed as a luxury. It’s not! Good content can help you connect and build a solid, loyal customer base. Luckily for time-pressed business owners, AI-powered sofware can help produce content at scale if there’s no one else available to do it (although proof-reading is always needed – see point 4).
There are some Natural Language Processing (NLG) tools that “write content”. These tools convert structured data into language that consumers can understand. And although many of these platforms aren’t perfect, they can still be highly effective.
Remember that it’s always worth investing in a human writer if you’re looking for specific types of content that require a very human touch. GPT-3 (see paragraph one) isn’t exactly affordable so for now you could try sites such as Articoolo, Article Forge or WordAI – all reasonably priced and useful if you’re looking to churn out optimised content at speed.
3. Improve Personalisation
Personalisation can increase engagement and help you to connect with your audience. When you tailor content to your audience based on their behaviour, people will be more likely to convert.
There are also tools that can track the performance of social media content and collect and analyse demographics and values, allowing hyper-personalised content for better social media campaigns. Check out Atomic Reach – which rewrites your content in the style your audience prefers.
You’ve probably used Grammarly before. This is an AI-assisted grammar checking tool which is great for analysing copy quickly and effectively. Proof-reading is a vital part of the content production process and now you can ensure your copy is good to go in just minutes.
Overall, it’s important to be bold when it comes to adopting AI-powered software. Rapid advances mean that you can plug productivity bottlenecks, scale content and target your audience effectively using AI-powered software.
But. While AI is growing more sophisticated by the day, it’s not there yet. The human touch is a thing and AI-generated content can lack a sense of emotion – don’t fire anyone just yet.