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ChatGPT: Why we need to 'embrace' not 'replace'

In the week where the Daily Mail reports that ‘AI could wipe out humanity’ (in my defence, I was blindsided by the headline as I popped into Sainsbury's Local), it's important

to take stock of what ChatGPT can and can't do and what it means for the writing profession.

Writer's forums are awash with talk of how we are all doomed and should be sobbing into our laptops, rocking backwards and forwards, wailing uncontrollably, and wondering where we go from here. It's not a pretty picture.

Sure, ChatGPT will prove transformative. But its power won't be in the copy it generates. At the heart of effective copywriting and content creation is the power to build human connection. This connection is built on story-telling. On the ability to evoke emotion. On conveying humour, sarcasm, creativity and originality. This is something ChatGPT can’t do. Neither can it bring stories to life with interviews, case studies, debate generating opinion. Which makes the copy it creates seem all very one dimensional.

ChatGPT's power will be in how it can support writers to write great copy. The smart copywriter or content creator will look at ChatGPT as an additional tool in their armoury – for ideation and to bring efficiencies to the copywriting process. To quote Stephen Covey, 'To evolve, we must embrace things like technology'. But just as using a calculator doesn't make you a great mathematician, or Canva doesn't make you a great designer, ChatGPT won't make you a great copywriter. ChatGPT-generated copy can be clunky, factually incorrect, and bland, lacking depth, tone, and brand voice. And in an environment where companies are fighting for consumer's share of wallet, relying on marketing strategies based on AI-generated content may prove risky in the long run.
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