Content marketing is hotter than ever right now and shows no signs of slowing down. As a recent Forbes article explains, “Effective marketing and content creation are inextricably linked. It’s one of the best ways to regularly connect with your audience while boosting your reputation and credibility. ...[So,] in today’s digital-first consumer ecosystem, it’s increasingly important to generate content for potential and recurring buyers.” Echoing this sentiment, HubSpot has declared content marketing to be the most effective form of marketing today, saying, "Consistent, high-quality, and engaging content impacts audience decision-making more than any other technique."
As content marketing continues to be an effective lead generation and customer acquisition tool, companies are starting to evaluate whether new AI-based tools like ChatGPT can provide low-cost assistance with their ongoing content creation efforts.
The answer to the question of whether ChatGPT can save a company money compared to the cost of hiring a professional content writer or digital marketing company is obvious. Using ChatGPT costs a fraction of what a professional service of any type would charge because anyone at any level of the business can generate an article on any topic in a matter of minutes. There is no first-hand knowledge required or research needed to get an article created. You simply need to ask a few questions and copy/paste the answers into a document and voila, you have an article. The hours of brainstorming, researching, outlining, and writing that an experienced content writer would normally spend are replaced by an AI algorithm that aggregates existing content into an article in a matter of minutes. It’s free and it’s fast.
Sounds great, right? Maybe not.
As is always the case when something seems too good to be true, there’s a catch! As the old saying goes, “You can have it good, fast, or cheap. Pick two.” ChatGPT prioritizes speed over quality, and the difference in quality between human-created content and AI-generated content is huge!
If the aim of content marketing is to engage an audience by creating resources that provide value before asking for anything in return (like a social media share, the sale, or a recommendation), ChatGPT falls sorely short. Content created by ChatGPT does nothing to establish industry expertise, encourage connection, or promote positive brand awareness – any of the main tenets of content marketing.
Let’s take a look at where ChatGPT misses the mark and what some better options are to improve your content strategy:
ChatGPT may be able to generate content that can substitute for a middle school book report or high school history essay, but it cannot replace quality content in a business setting. Jessica Stillman articulates this in her article Why Learning to Write Well Is Still Important in the Age of A.I. when she says, “Chatbots can convincingly regurgitate human knowledge, but they still struggle to expand it or even combine it in new and enlightening ways.” As a synthesis of existing information on a particular topic, it only provides factual information – definitions, components, steps involved, etc. It cannot offer opinion or insight into a particular topic and has no real-world information to share with its audience. As a result, it doesn’t come alongside the reader in any way to offer advice or make a persuasive argument. The content is not useful because it lacks a sense of purpose, which makes it entirely ineffective from a content marketing standpoint.
Cannot Create Connection
A dictionary-like format combined with the “bot voice” tone that’s characteristic of ChatGPT combines to make content that feels unnatural to readers. It’s not compelling in any way, which means that it won’t do anything to build a brand. In fact, using this kind of bland content may even result in brand damage and deter business because it portrays the company as inexperienced or unoriginal. For companies looking to achieve industry thought leadership as part of their revenue strategy, this can act as a serious blow to their credibility.
Adds to The Noise
Without a real purpose or the ability to establish a connection with prospective or current customers, ChatGPT content simply adds to the noise. Since it’s only based on what’s already online, there’s nothing new or special or unique about it. With about 2.5 quintillion bytes of data created every day, creating this type of content is a waste of time because it’ll immediately get lost in the fray.
Perpetuates Existing Shortcomings
Because ChatGPT only aggregates existing information it cannot dispel or overcome popular misconceptions or biases like a real expert with first-hand knowledge of a topic. If the last few years have taught us anything it’s that lived experiences are an incredibly powerful thing for people to share and connect over. Without these real-life experiences to draw on, AI-generated content will always fall short of content written by actual people that can think independently and feel the full breadth of human emotions.
Offers an Incomplete or Imbalanced Perspective
One of the most common ways that ChatGPT falls prey to popular misconceptions is in oversimplifying a topic. ChatGPT content runs the risk of being incomplete on a particular topic by lacking the kind of context that exists in the real world. For example, ChatGPT may provide information on how to fix a business problem without any discussion of what the underlying issue is that’s causing that problem, or providing a broader context to understand what kind of ripple effect may occur once that problem arises.
Of course, there are also times when the opposite is true. ChatGPT can also be “too complete” – lacking the nuance to know when more information is too much information. Using the same example, a ChatGPT article may not only describe the business problem that’s occurring but also nine other common business problems and the characteristics of companies that typically experience these kinds of problems. And while all of this information may technically be related, it distracts the reader who is looking for help with the one specific problem they are encountering and convolutes the information they are seeking. Humans understand these nuances and can write content that explains what it should, nothing more and nothing less.
If Not ChatGPT, then What?
It’s important to note though that this discussion is comparing ChatGPT to an industry expert or professional content writer, not any human with a keyboard. If your content strategy is currently built on cheap outsourced copywriting, the comparison won’t be as stark because that approach isn’t much better. Whether you’re using AI, a fresh-faced intern, or a discount third-party copywriter, your efforts will fall short because these sources do not have the experience needed to produce valuable content. Instead of cutting corners or slashing budgets, invest in quality! Prioritize the kind of valuable and actionable content that an effective content marketing strategy requires. Remember, compelling content is a key revenue driver for top-line growth!
For information on how to best utilize content to fuel your revenue strategy, please reach out to us! We would be happy to discuss how your brand can better serve its audience to generate more leads, increase conversions, and improve overall profitability to drive sustainable revenue. Start a conversation today!
About the Author
Kate Pierce – Digital Marketer with Resultist
Kate is a skilled content writer with experience across a wide range of industries. She produces content for executives and the brands they represent in many different verticals, adapting her writing to match their voices and address their target audiences. Kate is passionate about connecting with and helping people through meaningful content.
She enjoys spending time with her husband and two children and being active in her church. You can often find her baking, reading, or drinking iced coffee.
Kate holds a B.S. in Marketing with a minor in English from Bentley University and also studied at University College Dublin in Dublin, Ireland.