See what I did there?
Hey, I thought it was clever! ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
AI, Machine Learning, Open AI, the Metaverse, EOL of the Choco Taco. The world is going through a lot, and this short list doesn’t begin to scratch the surface of everything we need to think about.
AI software is becoming more and more prominent in the marketing space. Many companies are signing up to see how these tools can help improve their marketing efforts.
But are these tools even good at what they promise? Are they good at writing useful, robust content? Are these tools right for your business?
I break it down for you today in this here article. Buckle up, kids! Papa Vasquez bringing the heat today!
Are the robots coming for your job?
That’s how it seems on the surface. But that’s not what these tools are built for. In my opinion, AI writing software exists to improve writing workflows for content creators.
These tools work best to get your content started, and once the AI gets to writing, it’s up to content creators to further flesh out the content by adding their voices, opinion, and research.
In time, AI, I think, will become more and more sophisticated to add these very human details to the content it generates, and who knows how far off it will be. And when we reach that point, will content from humans be indistinguishable from robots? Do we want it to be?
Personally, I don’t like that. Yes, I’m going to be that old curmudgeon and just state that we realize the potential of what we can be when we engage in the arts. I think it’s a foolish act to outsource our creative labor to the bots, as it were.
AI + Machine Learning and Generative content
First, what is generative writing? Generative writing, often conducted via workshops or online writing prompts, prescribes how a story should be written by providing suggestions for words, sentence structure, and subject matter.
With that in mind, that’s how the various AI tools function. You provide the AI software with a prompt. You start with a sentence or paragraph about your topic, and then you click a button, where the AI picks up where you left off and constructs the next sentence, paragraph, or story.
These types of tools have been around for a little while now. My first experience with them and seeing what they can do was the Ghosts article, published by Believer Magazine.
The article was haunting, beautiful, and interesting. Some of the things the AI wrote in response to the author’s various prompts were astonishing. It piqued my interest, and I wanted to research things further.
Can AI Writing Software Improve Your Writing?
It’s not just generative writing, though. AI and machine learning power other writing tools as well. One that comes to mind is one that I always use: Grammarly. It’s a powerful tool that helps you craft stronger, less passive sentences, paragraphs, and spell checking and grammar support. This tool alone has helped my writing tremendously.
Hemingway App is another tool that purports to help you improve your writing. I’ve used it, and it’s an amazing tool also. It helps analyze your content’s readability, providing suggestions for improvements.
That said, I prefer to use Grammarly because I can use it in the places where I write, like: Google Docs, WordPress, my Email Client, etc. It lives where I write.
AI tools like Grammarly have helped me to become a more effective writer. Also, reading On Writing helped me a lot, too.
Benefits of AI Writing Tools
As previously noted, tools like OpenAI, Jasper, and Chibi are great at generating content when given a prompt.
To be transparent, I did not use these tools for this article.
But I figured I’d let the AI tools tell you how they benefit users and content creators in this next paragraph.
From the Chibi AI writing tool:
By using AI to help us, we can create more content in less time than it would have taken us to write ourselves. An article we’ve written in-house could take up to 4 hours to write and revise to a high standard. When using AI software, we spend less time on basic tasks – saving us time to focus on the unique selling points of our content.
As we create more content, we can see how it benefits our website in search engines. With our in-house content team producing more content in less time, we can focus on other projects such as designing and optimizing a website.
With AI writing, we can produce better content whilst having more time for other projects in the business.
AI tools like Chibi help creators get started on their content and can generate ideas quickly that the author can then expand upon or modify to create greater value for the end user who will eventually read that content.
Where AI Writing Tools Lack
Having used OpenAI, Jasper, and Chibi for the last few weeks, I can say that I am impressed. These tools generate relative, seemingly well-structured content.
But is the content good enough to let it ride on your website? No, I don’t think so. The output of the content is valid but is ultimately thin. Meaning that the content lacks depth, is unopinionated, and has no, or few, sources to back up what it’s writing.
The content, in my opinion, would likely be marked as thin by Google and other search engines. Thin content doesn’t add value to a user’s search query. Once upon a time, this meant densely keyword-packed pages, affiliate signup pages, link pages, etc. Those are frowned upon.
I have to believe that Google’s analysis and algorithms have only gotten more sophisticated over time to begin to identify thin, low-effort content as well.
I suggest doing the work, sharing your opinion, showing your research, and standing on your content by demonstrating your expertise.
Should You Use AI Writing Tools?
It’s important to remember that Google’s quality guidelines now analyze content to ensure it’s written by humans rather than automation. Per Google’s Guidelines:
Has the content been primarily written by a human rather than using extensive automation?Source: https://developers.google.com/search/updates/ranking
I’m not clear on how the Google Algorithms will detect whether something is written by AI or a human, but I suggest always playing by the rules. In other words, write your own content.
Sure, you can leverage AI writing tools to help you create a content outline and at least get the creative juices flowing—and then you can flesh out the article as you see fit based on your own research and analysis. Leaving AI to write your content for you isn’t a good idea, in my opinion.
As I mentioned above, in their current iterations, these tools are great at helping you quickly get the ball rolling on your content for idea generation.
You can even use the tools to flesh out areas of content that are lacking or when you have brain fog and can’t figure out what to write.
Your Opinion Matters
Much is said about opinions being like a-holes; everyone has one, and they all stink. I get it. My favorite opinions are the ones that come from people who are experts in my life and offer advice I didn’t ask for! This paragraph is covered in hot-steamy sarcasm, folks!
What makes your business unique is the expertise that sets you apart from the competition and makes you invaluable.
The AI doesn’t have your snazzy pizazz; it doesn’t have your sense of humor; it doesn’t have your thoughtfulness. it doesn’t think. It responds to prompts. That’s it. There are millions of calculations happening, but it’s not you.
AI will never deliver a James Beard Nominated article like my colleague, Jack, from Brooklyn. AI will never understand the nuance of geo politics and LA City issues better than my client over at LA Progressive. AI will never deliver the goods about shoulder rehab and how to be a better runner than my client Dr. Howard Luks.
AI is a powerful tool and it will continue to shape our future and if you leverage it well, like my clients at FairPlay AI, you can affect change.
Understand, accept, and use the gift that is you. The bots are there to be used and guided by humans, but your creativity truly matters.
Are you using AI tools in your business? How so? Let us know!
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