Will Artificial Intelligence Replace Content Writers

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The world as we know it is evolving at super speed — yet we have not began to scratch the surface of what can be achieved with Technology. Technological innovation is surging through all spheres of life and is no doubt redefining the field of Marketing in so many dimensions. With the rising controversies around bots taking over jobs, it’s natural to harbor some worry, working some roles in marketing.

In this article, we will examine whether or not content writers should feel threatened by bots, and I’ll go ahead to share some valuable skills to help prepare you for the future of work in your field.

Since 1950 when Alan Turing first posed the question, “Can machines think?”, Artificial Intelligence (Ai) has come a long way, with promising developments altering the digital marketing practice.

Technology has become the foundation of modern-day marketing and the application of Ai in content marketing varies greatly. First, Let’s examine the three below.

Sometimes termed predictive analysis, predictive intelligence helps businesses understand the demands of not just a customer segment but individual customers. This helps marketers deliver content tailored towards what customers want before they even know they want it.

It does this by tracking customer behavior across various digital touch points and building a profile of their specific preferences. The data cumulated on these profiles is then used to predict what customers will most likely want next.

‘Most likely’ because irrespective of the fact that predictions can sometimes be 99% accurate (based on data sets used to train the model) it is still a prediction.

Predictive models can also provide insights on the kinds of content that will likely trigger a desirable action (purchase, subscriptions, charitable donations, page visits, post shares e.t.c) from the customer.

Predictive intelligence is greatly dependent on the power of cloud computing in Ai and ML. Machine intelligence in many ways, exceeds human intelligence to the extent that it can identify patterns in large data sets otherwise blinded to humans.

Asides marketing, many aspects of our everyday life are now being impacted by Ai powered by the IOT.

We’ve all heard the saying — “Content is King”. Artificial intelligence is the throne that fuels the extent to which the power of content can be elevated. Content automation involves systems and processes that help remove the need for human intervention in content marketing.

It adopts Ai across the customer lifecycle to automate processes that are repetitive, time-consuming, or costly and delivers improved ROI.

One application of this is in softwares that use audience intelligence to identify themes / topics with high conversation rates to help accelerate the process of content creation — where it matters.

Advertising platforms like Google Ads and Facebook Ads also have content automation capabilities (such as responsive display and text ads, ad suggestions and tailored audience suggestions) that help advertisers get the best results from their ad content without requiring manual effort.

Another application of Ai powered content automation is seen in platforms that use content intelligence (which simply means data gathered from content consumption across web assets) to automatically curate micro-personalized journeys that are unique to each buyer.

Such platforms also have the capability to identify sales-ready buyers and what content and channels work for each buyer based on time spent on content consumption.

These platforms help to improve conversions, reduce cycle times, and optimize marketing spend.

With the advent of a software process called Natural Language Generation (NLG), marketing content that used to be provided by content creators can now be supplied by machines. NLG is the use of Ai to produce written and spoken narratives from a data set. It is related to Natural Language Processing (NLP) and Natural Language Understanding (NLU)

NLG is carried out in 6 steps: Content analysis, data understanding, document structuring, sentence aggregation, grammatical structuring, and language presentation.

Alibaba, the Chinese eTailer, relies on machines to write product descriptions and other marketing copy.

Heliograf, The Washington Post’s Ai technology, is being used to cover all high school football games in the Washington, D.C. area, every week.

Forbes’ content management system Bertie supports reporters with first drafts and templates for news stories.

Bloomberg’s Cyborg has written thousands of articles that interpret financial reports into news stories just as a business reporter would do.

Samsung also, is turning it up a notch by introducing artificial human beings that look and act like the real thing and are used to market products and services 24/7 — Think sci-fi but without the ‘fi’

Not only can content creation become automated, it can also engage real prospects successfully. However, for now, this process isn’t currently possible for content that requires human connection, empathy, and fulfillment of marketing goals (such as user engagement and lead generation).

AI content creation is algorithmic. Its potential is based on the information we humans feed into it. This is exactly where its limitations lie.

To replace manual content creation completely, first AI has to be able to think like a human. It needs to form opinions, it has to have emotions, understand cultural differences and it needs to think critically.

It can be argued that Ai will soon enough have the ability to understand cultural differences and think critically , just like humans do. It’s only a matter of deep learning and artificial neural networks — But that’s a conversation for another post.

So where do we go from here?

A wise man once said…

“One machine can do the work of fifty ordinary men. No machine can do the work of one extraordinary man.”

— Elbert Hubbard

The key to staying relevant in this field is to up-skill in line with the development of technology as it relates to your field. Consider these actionable steps:

Taking advantage of automation platforms will help you and your team become more productive, make better use of marketing budget, and achieve results quicker. Some of them are PathFactory, UberFlip and Divvy Hq.

One skill I can almost guarantee will not go out of style any time soon is data analysis. The importance of data in marketing cannot be overstated. As a content strategist / writer, a proficiency in data analysis will not only set you apart; but also help you achieve better results. Couple that with an expertise using business intelligence tools (such as Power Bi and Tableau) to increase your intellectual capital in the organization.

Undeniable is the fact that technology is disrupting industries, practices and business models very quickly. Organizations and individuals that fail to catch-up will very soon be left behind. It is important to keep yourself updated on the latest trends in tech. Do this by subscribing to blogs and connecting with people who share the same interests.

**Additional resource: If you ever experience some creative block in the process of copy writing, check out microcopy.me — a free resource with thousands of headlines and slogans to kickstart your thought process.

With the advancement of technology, the future we so very often speak about is here now. Wouldn’t now be a great time to start planning towards getting ahead?

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All the best,

Folahanmi Esan

A Business Innovation enthusiast who enjoys writing about Tech and the future of Marketing.