ChatGPT Won’t Replace Your PR Team
The Caster team has been encouraged to try AI out in all of its various forms and to see where it does and doesn’t hit the mark. As folks working in the tech industry, it’s part of our job to keep tabs on the evolving role of tools that might help us or potentially replace us. After doomscrolling through all the articles claiming AI would steal my career, I leaned into using the actual products myself and realized that’s unlikely to be the case.
When a Shortcut Becomes The Long Way Home
With every tweet generated, I thought, “This could be the shortcut for creating sometimes tedious but always necessary content.” Then came the article. One 1000-word article that proved using AI is not always quicker than doing it the old-fashioned way.
I spent time perfecting my input to get the right output. Despite starting with clear instructions and a healthy outline, the process became a task in ChatGPT input modification, rather than a task in writing. In fact, reading through the nonsense that it drafted made my eyes glaze over. It was a fine article. It was technically even good. But, oh wow, was it boring. Two points:
- Our clients don’t hire us to produce “fine” work.
- The information available to start this article was sparse. Time was invested to pull together the resources necessary to make a sensible topic and outline for the AI to rely on in the first place.
Without even considering the importance of strategy and relationships, the limitations of ChatGPT underscore why it can’t replace the human touch in PR. While it might come close to replicating human-like content, it still lacks the finesse and nuance required to truly make anything stand out. Writing requires a certain je ne sais quoi to make materials shine. ChatGPT struggles with tasks demanding high levels of creativity or social and emotional skills – aspects that we, as PR consultants, excel at. Our roles demand a deep understanding of the human experience that generative AI, as of now, simply can’t replicate.
Not Without Value
I’m not dismissing ChatGPT or AI writing tools entirely. They are best viewed as a tool to enhance productivity rather than a full-on replacement. Here’s where AI can come in handy for content creation:
- As a brainstorming buddy – Question after question, ChatGPT is ready. It’s great at offering multiple iterations on things like headlines.
- As a teacher – ChatGPT is great for giving an entry-level explanation for complicated topics (with a few caveats)
- As an editor – AI tools like GrammarlyGO can offer suggestions to make writing clearer. ChatGPT can make my 1000-word article into a 200-word summary.
- As a social media intern – Yes, take my general idea and turn it into a post tailored for LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and more.
This is just a brief look into why AI and PR pros aren’t interchangeable like-for-like. Certainly, a short blog can’t go into the depth and detail necessary to discuss how I could be a better prompt engineer or the potential evolution of AI. Generative AI might replace my job someday, I mean never say never. Until then, it’s the digital intern I have to carefully walk through every step. I’m hopeful we can strike a steady balance, where AI makes the tedious parts of PR more efficient so I have more time and brain power to spend on things that matter (hello, media relations and strategy).