I was fortunate enough this week to attend an event in London organised by CIM, looking at the role of AI in marketing and advertising. There is clearly a revolution going on here, transforming the way many complex and time-consuming tasks can be done more easily, quickly and efficiently (and sometimes even to a higher standard).
So, for example, understanding the context of a customer journey, or providing context around personalised adverts, images or content, can potentially transform the way that advertisers and retailers can sell more effectively and easily. There is also bar below which the consumer is probably not too bothered about whether a message, image or advert has been AI generated, or sent by a human designer or marketer.
But what if that message you were sent was from a friend, and you discovered that this friend or colleague had simply got a chatbot to write and send a message out to you, without them even reading it or checking it? Well, then it may start to bother you. When it comes to personal communications, or something that is ‘authentic’ and from a company, or person, you want to feel somebody cares enough to really have written something themselves, not just send you an automatically generated message. To discover this was the case would cheapen and discredit that communication, and make that person or organization appear insincere, or lightweight.
I believe the same is true in B2B communications, where articles, posts, and even most press releases, are read based (mostly) on the assumption that they have been checked, approved and written in an authentic way, by a human hand. Imagine if newspapers and magazines used GenAI to write all their articles? Again, the credibility to the reader would be lost, if they knew that all they were reading was what a computer programme thought they wanted to read, and had simply interpreted the facts in a way they thought the readers wanted to see them.
So, as with the advent of social media, when it seemed that automation would take over from bespoke content or communications, and it then became apparent that readers, users and buyers still wanted credible content, I believe the same will be true of GenAI generated content. It will have its place, and for many uses it will fit in perfectly, and bring many benefits. But for marketers and communications managers and leaders, especially in the B2B space, their customers and buyers will still want to see credible content, that has been produced by the actual people involved, not the demeaning notion of being sent automatically generated content that lacks credibility. So although many are rushing for the GenAI land grab currently underway, it is also good to pause and consider the implications for your brand and communications if it is done without due care and consideration.