By now, you’ve probably heard of the power of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and seen people using the open platform ChatGPT to do everything from confirming conspiracy theories to writing poetry. Now, with the announcement of ChatGPT’s API, we can all expect a future filled with more and more conversations with robots. This is big news for the technology sector, and developers are engaged in what Wired Magazine aptly calls an AI Gold Rush.
According to ZDNet, ChatGPT is a natural language processing tool driven by AI technology that allows you to have human-like conversations and much more with a chatbot. The language model can answer questions and assist you with tasks such as composing emails, essays, and code.
Usage is currently open to the public free of charge for now because ChatGPT is in its research and feedback-collection phase. As of February 1, there is also a paid subscription version called ChatGPT Plus.
There’s no question that this is a very intriguing technology that has huge implications for people who work in tech and development, but what does it actually mean for the rest of us? This article is intended to help business owners and marketers navigate the hype while keeping a close eye on potential benefits. Here are three human observations about some of the current possibilities and precautions for small business owners and marketers who work outside of the technology space:
USE ChatGPT TO HELP WITH CONTENT CREATION AND BRAINSTORMING: ChatGPT can write blogs, video scripts, social media posts, and SEO. It can suggest keywords, write quirky poems, provide slogan ideas, and even write a detailed proposal. In the coming months, AI will be increasingly integrated with the software tools we commonly use for customer onboarding, email responses, appointment reminders, answer FAQs, and more. These are all great ways to augment your productivity and creativity and speed up your communications processes.
FOCUS ON HUMANS, NOT HACKS: Although it generates human-like language, generative AI won’t be able to capture your brand’s established voice or personality perfectly. It’s important to remember that, for now, your customers are still humans who crave connection and want to be seen and heard. Overusing AI or jumping in too early to the technology may have an adverse effect.
An example of overuse includes loading up your website with keyword-stuffed blog posts that are clearly written for a non-human audience. This is not only a turnoff for the people reading your blogs, it’s also against Google’s SPAM policies.In a post on the Google Search Central blog, Google explains that:
“When it comes to automatically generated content, our guidance has been consistent for years. Using automation- including AI – to generate content with the primary purpose of manipulating ranking in search results violates our spam policies. This said it’s important to recognize that not all use of automation, including AI generation, is spam. Automation has long been used to generate helpful content, such as sports scores, weather forecasts, and transcripts. AI has the ability to power new levels of expression and creativity, and to serve as a critical tool to help people create great content for the web.”
What about jumping in too early? While these new shiny objects are exciting, this is still an emerging marketplace, and there are kinks left to work out. For example, OpenAI is working on reducing plagiarism and even including a digital watermark to show the text was AI-generated. The intention is to give the academic world some peace of mind, but if this becomes the standard, it might send the wrong message to your audience, causing them to question your relevance and authority in your field or undermine their trust.
Careful and strategic planning about implementation can prevent you from finding yourself and your brand in an embarrassing position. Scott Varho says, in Betanews, “If I had to make a prediction, the move towards widespread adoption is still five to seven years away. One of the primary barriers to adoption is talent at the execution and executive levels of organizations with a rich understanding of the benefits and limitations of the technology.”
UNDERSTAND WHAT ChatGPT IS…AND ISN’T
There are plenty of comparisons between ChatGPT and Google. But there are important differences between the two platforms. ChatGPT is a language model created to hold a conversation with the end user. Google, on the other hand, is a search engine that indexes web pages on the internet to help the user find the information they asked for. ChatGPT cannot search the internet for information. It uses the information it learned from training data to generate a response, which leaves room for error, particularly since it only has access to information up to 2021. By contrast, a regular search engine like Google has access to the latest information in real-time. Therefore, if you ask ChatGPT who won the World Cup in 2022, it wouldn’t be able to respond, but Google would be able to find one for you on the web.
Bottom line: Look before you leap. Companies working in industries outside of technology should consider their unique business goals before rushing to adopt generative AI. While impressive, the technology is still nascent, requires a ton of training, and only does what it’s designed to do. Pumping out a bunch of SEO-optimized junk from ChatGPT may be a fun party trick, but useful, valuable, thoughtful uses of AI require more strategic thinking by the humans who are stakeholders in your brand.