In this first installment, we are pleased to introduce "The 7 Commandments of Generative AI for Copywriters." These principles are designed to be versatile and adaptable, serving as a solid starting point for anyone looking to collaborate with AI technology. We'll discuss strategies for maintaining authenticity, boosting productivity, and creating content that resonates with your audience, all while working in harmony with AI. So, join us as we embark on this enlightening journey, paving the way for a creative future powered by Generative AI.
Before we get started, let’s break down some key terms that lay the foundation for our exploration.
1. Generative AI
Definition: Generative AI, short for Generative Artificial Intelligence, is a branch of artificial intelligence that focuses on the creation of content or data, typically in the form of text, images, or even music, that is generated by machines. Generative AI is a broader concept encompassing various forms of content generation.
2. LLM (Large Language Model):
Definition: LLM, or Large Language Model, is a specific type of generative AI model that specializes in understanding and generating human language. These models are trained on massive datasets and can perform tasks such as language translation, text summarization, and, of course, generating text. LLMs are a subset of generative AI models, tailored specifically for language-related tasks. While all LLMs are generative AI, not all generative AI models are LLMs.
Since this article is focused on copywriters we will be focusing on language generation first, but stay tuned for future articles in our series where we will explore other forms of generative AI as well. From now on, we will mainly be using the term 'Language Model' to refer to the AI systems we're discussing in this exploration.
The Seven Commandments of Generative AI
There’s tons of weird tweaks you can do to improve the output of generative AI models. For instance, language models have been shown to be better at math when told to ‘clear their heads’ first. A lot of this falls under the esoteric field of ‘prompt engineering’, which we largely won’t cover due to its highly model-dependent nature. Nonetheless, we have compiled 7 commandments we feel stand a pretty good chance of staying valid for at least a year or so! (Dreaming big, we know)
1. Know thy stuff
No matter how much language models improve, remember this: it will always be up to a human to determine if the output resonates. Sure, it might sting to think that even a random intern or CEO can dabble with AI to compete with your handcrafted copy. But here's the secret sauce: given equal time to achieve the highest possible quality, you, the language professional, can use language models and outshine any non-linguistic contender.
However, it cuts both ways. As a copywriter, you must delve deep into your subject matter. Otherwise, you risk your language models spewing out nothing but superficial or hallucinated information. In essence, a copywriter who can wield language models and combine a sense of language with proper domain knowledge is an unbeatable combo for content that truly captivates and connects.
2. Rinse and repeat
In the realm of generative AI, one thing stands out: being critical is your number one skill as a professional. Your ability to discern and voice your opinions is what sets you apart. And when it comes to working with AI, especially in the context of language generation, this skill becomes paramount.Generative AI isn't a one-shot wonder; it's not a magic wand that instantly conjures perfect copy. Instead, it thrives on repetition and refinement. If you've tried ChatGPT once and it didn't immediately deliver acceptable results, don't be dismissive. This is where your critical eye and communication skills truly shine.
3. Rage against the machine
Let's talk about something many of us have experienced: language models can breed a certain type of laziness. It's easy to become reluctant to write something manually when you have the power of AI at your fingertips. But here's the reality check: sometimes, you just have to roll up your sleeves, embrace the keyboard, and write a paragraph or two completely manually. It might seem counterintuitive, but it's often faster than going back and forth endlessly with your AI companion.
4. Copy, edit, review
The most effective workflow for maximizing language models' potential boils down to this: Copy the output of your language model, Edit it to match your unique taste and style, and then, crucially, Review it with your language model. Simply saying “Here is my final version, what do you think?” can improve future output drastically.
PRO TIP: Trim the frequent summaries and extra fluff language models tend to tack on. Keep it concise, and your message will shine brighter.
5. Format, style, content
When working with language models, it's vital to provide specific instructions. Begin by specifying the format (e.g., social post or ebook), define the style (formal indictment or casual frat boy language), and outline the content of your copy (bullet points work fine). These basic instructions help language models tailor their output to your exact needs and preferences.
6. Divide and conquer
When tackling lengthy copy, instead of generating it all in one go, break it down into manageable sections. By working on each part separately, you gain greater control over the message you want to convey. Additionally, as you move from section to section your language model learns from your guidance. This will dramatically improve the quality of the language model output as you progress, ultimately leading to a faster time to achieve the desired output.
7. Work the machine
We frequently find ourselves feeling a tad guilty for being so demanding with our language model. We’re overly critical, we ask for more than intended, knowing full well that we'll end up discarding 90% of its output. But here's the thing, and it's something we remind ourselves of: while our language model might feel like a human partner, it's still a tool. (for now).
So don’t hesitate to be demanding, iterate endlessly, all the stuff you wouldn’t want your clients to be. In the end, it's about delivering the best possible content, and your language model is there to assist you on that journey.
PRO TIP: Start by asking for 3-5 variations with varying tone and structure. It’s a great way to get some creative alternatives and get started in the right direction.
To wrap it up, the seven commandments of generative AI for copywriters lay down the foundation for a promising future in the realm of content creation. Our series will be offering not just guidance but also inspiration and practical wisdom.
Stay connected with us to explore more specialized techniques, real-world case studies, and the latest advancements in the dynamic world of generative AI. As the world of AI and copywriting continues to evolve, our commitment is to keep you well-informed and well-prepared, so you can flourish in the ever-changing realm of digital content.