I guess I had to write an article about ChatGPT sooner or later. And, as we're a marketing agency for law firms we should probably do it from the context of whether you should just be using ChatGPT to write all your content from now on?
Predictably I'm falling on the side of “probably not”. For the moment, at least, there are a number of hurdles that make AI driven marketing content a poor idea for most law firms.
Let's see why.
While ChatGPT can generate text, it may not always produce high-quality content that is original, accurate, and tailored to your specific needs and audience.ChatGPT Explaining its own Deficiencies
It's Wrong Often Enough to be a Problem
The first reason is the most obvious – you want your articles to be correct, and there's a good chance that ChatGPT isn't getting it right in spots.
Sure, it gets a lot of stuff right, but tucked away in the corner of your article could easily be a statement, reference or assertion that simply isn't correct. It might be plain as day, or it might be a bit more subtle, but there's a good chance it's there.
Now the main reason you might use ChatGPT for your blog posts is to save you time, right? And that benefit becomes eroded if you know that you're going to have to check every article in so much detail that you might as well have just written it yourself.
It Reads Strangely
While ChatGPT is a significant leap from some previous AI writing efforts, the products it churns out are often still a bit mushy when it comes to “sounding human”.
It's difficult for me to put a precise thumb on this, but a lot of what it writes just still sounds like it's come straight from a rule book. The sentences are predictable lengths, the word usage is typically uninteresting, and while you can use clever prompts to get more creative it still tends to err on the side of being a touch flavourless.
It's Blogging Efforts Lack Human Context
ChatGPT, as it insists on telling you over and over, is not human.
As a result, it has neither human perspective nor human experiences.
So the meaningful war story you tell at parties, the fond recall of the time you forgot a tie for a Court hearing, the rampant use of the word “paradigm” in all of your articles – these things are uniquely you, and help your marketing content start to edge towards sounding more like a person wrote it and less like a regurgitated textbook.
Of course you could whack this kind of glitter into an AI written article, but you'd be shoehorning it in – it would lack flow and would look a lot like… someone inserting an irrelevant sentence into an article written by another.
Let's let chatGPT explain this one in its own words:
So, basically – ChatGPT generates text, but doesn't do content marketing.
The ability to ask ChatGPT for its sources of information exists, but it's often not very fruitful.
Sometimes it will give you a site to look at, other times it won't. Often it'll just give you a vague answer about drawing on information from the internets.
When having AI write an article on a given topic then, there's a half decent chance that what you're reading is a mish-mash of semi-plagiarised work.
We have to remember that ChatGPT is simply drawing on existing information and re-presenting. Naturally that's what we do too, but most of us are super-cautious about the prospect of copied or sufficiently similar work (duplicate content) that we can avoid it.
And if you don't know exactly where ChatGPT got its information from, how long do you think it'll be before someone unhelpfully and publically points out some similarities?
No Essence of Deliciousness
I recently read a comment (that I'm pretty sure is wrong) that the word “umami” draws its meaning from a phrase like “essence of deliciousness”.
ChatGPT ain't producing any umami for your articles.
In fact, had I asked ChatGPT to write this article the chances it would use the word umami (absent me telling it to) are nil.
Why? Because that would be weird.
But it would also be creative, and therein lies the rub. The chatbot, while cool, just isn't that creative. It doesn't think of new and interesting ways to do stuff, but rather draws on available knowledge to string together words more quickly than you or I might be able to.
In a sense, then, using ChatGPT is a little similar to using the cheaper production-line content creation services. Sure – you end up with an article that's mostly on topic and somewhat correct, but it's more like you're rolling your arm over because “we have to create more blog posts” than because you are actually interested in doing something outside the box.
But… People are Going to Do It Anyway
So for now I think AI driven articles are fairly weak compared to well written law firm blog posts.
Nonetheless, I am absolutely sure that law firms who just want to punch out a tonne of material are going to (or already are) use ChatGPT or similar products as a primary creator of their content. It's cheap, quick and it's going to put words on the page that you otherwise don't have time to do yourself.
But while I see a lot of merit in learning how to prompt ChatGPT and similar products effectively, right at the moment the firms who are genuinely interested in doing content marketing well shouldn't make the leap into pure AI content.