Since late 2022, AI has been a huge topic, discussed by everyone from kids in school to business executives. AI content creation algorithms such as ChatGPT and Bard stormed onto the scene. Their ability to create content almost from scratch raised a lot of eyebrows is incredible and is far more than just a fun website.
Thanks to these programs, people can generate every type of content within seconds. It’s no surprise that it caught the eye of some of the biggest names in the business, and has some copywriters worried.
But will the AI replace our jobs? We say not at all! In fact, AI will automate and streamline our work to make writing copy and optimising websites simpler than ever.
Is AI Copy good?
To most people, AI generated content looks fine. It can be well structured, lengthy, and well-informed. However, to copywriters, it’s clear that the AI produces decent work, but is still a long way off from stealing clients.
The algorithms used take content from every corner of the internet and create something based off that. The majority of what they learn from is basic, so what they produce is basic. ChatGPT and Bard are very new, which makes their content look impressive. But if you generate enough, you’ll start to see that all the content feels the same. No diversity is dull, and something that can only produce in one way will becoming boring fast.
AI content is basic, but well-optimised. If you have no experience with writing copy, the content is passable, around high-school level. Experts predict it will improve a lot soon, but it won’t fix AIs biggest copywriting issue.
Can AI write like a human?
AI copy lacks humanity.
Copywriters can write the way we talk. It’s why quality copy reads so well, and why it’s so effective at enticing and informing. It also lacks emotion. Copy that isn’t emotional cant evoke emotions from a reader. The third hurdle that AI runs into is relatability. Even with all the internet to access, AIs can’t tell what people will want to read about. By the time it does, there will be a new trend we’re obsessing over.
For example, if you wanted to make the content on your website lighter and more informal, while still getting the right point across, you’d need a copywriter to match your tone and adapt it to your requirements. Right now, AI can’t do this. In a few years, quite possibly, learning is what AI does best.
Will AI replace Copywriters?
Business owners who need new content might see AI as a cheap alternative to hiring a copywriter. It looks like a huge time save too. But is it really?
If you don’t the time to sit down and write a blog, a process that takes an hour minimum, and more often four to five, AI’s instant production looks like the answer. However, you’ll need to spend time poring over what the AI created to see if it’s A. Correct and B. Good enough for your site.
AIs are also limited by the prompt you give them. If it keeps misunderstanding your request, that’s a lot of time spent reading content that is wrong. Ten prompts later, you may have lost hours of time, and be no closer to having the copy you want.
Alternatively, you could spend half an hour talking to a copywriter who will go away and produce something that suits you perfectly. Then at most you’ll make a few tweaks, or ask for changes from the writer, and it’s done! Not AI fast, but you get a much better product with less time investment.
So, if you’re a copywriter who is worried about being replaced by AI, here’s something to set your mind at ease: it makes being a copywriter even better!
Can Copywriters use AI?
AI is fast. Fast and effective. The content may not be world-class, but it’s a good starting point. Copywriters are limited only be the number of hours in a day. By using systems like ChatGPT, you can create a starting point for your copy within seconds, and then simply improve it to fit your style.
In theory, this can save hours of research and break through writer’s block. Having 1000 words to work with already, instead of a blank page, can save hours, and greatly increase your copywriting capacity.
Is AI safe?
As with every new development in technology, the biggest question we ask is if it is safe to use. Cryptocurrency, the Metaverse and new social media platforms all had to spend time developing security systems so that the data you give them is secure.
As AI uses content from across the internet, there are doubts about its security. There will also be some fine print to dig through to find out how it uses your data, and how it sources its own.
There’s also a lot of discussion about the legitimacy of the content provided. The internet is packed with misinformation and out-of-date data. Can the AI discern between right and wrong? It’s hard to say. Take everything produced by these algorithms with a pinch of salt, and don’t share what they create blindly, no matter the topic.
The AI War
Despite having only existed for a couple of months now, ChatGPT was just purchased by Microsoft. It’s biggest rival, Bard, was also bought by Google. Two titans of tech, each with their own AI. Now it’s a battle to see who comes out on top and takes AI to the next level.
With almost infinite resources at their disposal, AI will be improved a lot by Google and Microsoft. The latter also purchased Bing, a rival search engine to Google that would be a lot more threatening to Google’s supremacy with AI enhancements.
It’s hard to know exactly what the tech giants will do with their new investment. Either they will rebrand the content creation algorithms and keep them operational, or take them apart and use them to improve search engines. At the moment, the latter looks more likely.
Smartphone Ais such as Siri and Google Assistant are early examples of what AI search engines could look like. In the future, if you type in a question into a search engine, you could get a personalised response from an AI, instead of a list of places to find the information yourself.
Can AI be used for SEO?
When discussing how AI will affect the world of copy and content, it’s inevitable that SEO gets mentioned too. If AI is used in search engines, will organic SEO still be effective?
Whenever there is a new development in the technology world, people always panic and say ‘this is the end of SEO’. This happens every year or so, and every time organic SEO has not only survived, but thrived.
What makes optimising websites tricky is that the search engines are moving targets. Every time there is a new update to Google, the goalposts are moved and SEO experts have to aim their shots differently. AI is often slow to adapt. It can learn fast in theory but is limited by its algorithms. If the goalposts move, it will keep kicking balls into the stands, not realising that the target has changed. A human SEO pro can also predict these changes, and therefore adapt what they do to be at the forefront of new updates and keep their clients’ websites ranking high.
SEO is all about keeping up with trends. AI algorithms can only work with existing information. They have a lot of it but struggle to see the wood for the trees. It won’t know when data is dated, and the technology is still years away from being able to prioritise.
In an ideal world, AI makes our lives easier. This is true for SEO too. For an SEO expert, the majority of working hours are used up on simple tasks and small tweaks that are easy but time-consuming. AI can be used to do a lot of basic tasks while the human works on more advanced problems that would stump the AI. This in turn increases productivity and generates better results.
So, your SEO career is safe too, and you will likely be needed even more as AI develops. No matter how sophisticated it becomes, it will only be a tool that makes SEO more important.
The Future of AI
The ultimate challenge for an AI is the Turing Test. First suggested by the legendary Alan Turing, this is a test to see if an AI can be indistinguishable from a human. For content creation AI, this will be whether the copy it writes will look exactly like the work of a human. ChatGPT and Bard have produced promising examples, but they both lack consistency; the cracks starting to show after a few uses.
AI search engines will have to answer your queries like a human would. For example, many banks are using simple AI to answer questions from customers. They recognise if the question is asked frequently and have lists of appropriate answers to provide the asker. If they don’t have the answer, you will be passed on to a human who does. To pass the Turing Test, the two parties would need to sound human so you couldn’t tell if it was a human typing an answer or if it is automated.
Right now, AIs are good at greeting people and pointing them in the right direction. The next step in their development is to be able to do it all, including answering any questions and providing the right information. As soon as one can converse like a human, AI will become a huge part of our lives.
With Microsoft and Google working on them, we’ll soon see more advanced AI that can pass the Turing Test and help us navigate online safely.
More about AI
The topic of AI is huge, and new headlines and updates will be popping up every day going forward. This blog barely scratches the surface of what AI can, and will, do. So stay tuned for more information about AI and how it can be used to improve your SEO ranking.