3 Hot Takes from Our “Promise and Perils of ChatGPT for PR Pros” Webinar

3 Hot Takes from our “Promise and Perils of ChatGPT for PR Pros” Webinar 

We partnered with Ragan Communications to host a webinar on “The Promise and Perils of ChatGPT for PR Pros.” PRophet Founder and CEO Aaron Kwittken led a panel of tech and communications experts including Alisa Miller, CEO and co-founder of Pluralytics; Alex Kelleher, president of Advantage Intelligence; and Barb Mosher Zinck, founder of BMZ Content Strategies and contributor at diginomica

The timely webinar dove into ChatGPT and its implications for communications professionals across the globe. Read on for three key takeaways from our discussion:  

A necessary culture shift for PR pros 

“We can have all the tools in the world, but as modern PR folks, we need to get over our inferiority and our interiority complex,” said Kwittken.  

Inferiority complexes can arise from stressors such as small budgets and lack of recognition from stakeholders, while interiority complexes often stem from stubbornness — especially when it comes to embracing new technologies. Leaving these behind, PR pros can achieve greater results by working alongside AI tools like ChatGPT, showcasing value in new and innovative ways. Times are changing fast, and next-gen PR pros will need to embody “communications engineers,” meeting at the intersection of art and science to maximize performance. 

ChatGPT won’t (successfully) replace writers 

“ChatGPT can do some impressive writing, but the voice is missing from the content; anyone could have written it,” said Mosher Zinck. “ChatGPT writes faster, but there’s a lack of humanity. But if I have to generate 10 different headlines, there’s a lot of potential there.” 

Currently, tools like ChatGPT work best as first draft generators and ideation assistants, helping human writers work more efficiently by avoiding the “blank page” struggles that come with kicking off a new project. From there, writers can then build upon the AI-generated copy, making the voice more distinct and human. In addition to adding color, human input ensures accuracy and mitigates plagiarism — two major obstacles facing the wider adoption of this technology. Although some companies will inevitably begin axing writers in favor of AI, most will learn the hard way that human input is still an integral component of high-quality content. 

Privacy is the priority  

“I think the privacy topic is really interesting,” said Kelleher. “The key use cases here are self-directed, but as we use these technologies that are going to learn about us, the question is what they’re learning about. Is that useful to us? Do we understand what they are learning about us, and do we have control over it?” 

Privacy should always be top of mind when adopting new technologies. For PR practitioners, it’s important to have a strong understanding of the data that tools collect; however, many are guilty of not carefully reading the fine print of user agreements. Ideally, tools use our data to improve the product, but our data can also be used in ways we aren’t aware of — which could potentially have serious impacts for organizations. As the use cases of ChatGPT and other generative AI tools expand, companies investing in these tools will need to be proactive on data privacy instead of trying to figure it out retroactively.