Human writers are dead.
Just kidding (of course all human writers didn’t just up and die). But AI tools like ChatGPT, WriteSonic and Jasper have shaken things up quite a bit in the B2B content marketing world. And few of these writers and content marketers know exactly what to do with them yet.
Let’s take a look at a few pros and cons of using these tools for B2B content writing—and what some real, human writers have to say about them.
Benefits of AI for writing B2B content
We’ve got some fans in the house when it comes to AI for blog writing (and other types of marketing content). If you’re looking to create content at scale or reduce the time and cost of your content operation, AI tools like ChatGPT and WriteSonic may have significant potential.
Here are some of the upsides:
1. Writing efficiency and scalability
One of the biggest benefits of using AI writing tools is the speed at which content is generated. AI tools can significantly cut down the time it takes to write a piece of content, from researching and writing to publishing. This can be especially useful for content marketing efforts that require faster turnaround times. Additionally, AI writing tools can help writers produce content in multiple languages, localizing copy for each region.
Jon Dome, Head of Marketing at Strategyn, says the vendors that can the job done faster and cheaper will win out—as long as they still deliver results.
Noah Stambovsky, Paid Media Specialist at Modern Driven Media, agrees that B2B writers and content marketers will be judged on the results and quality of their output, not the “purity of their process.”
Similar to overall efficiency, AI writing tools can offer cost efficiency.
Compared to human writers, many AI writing tools are much more cost-effective. ChatGPT is free. OtherAI writing tools (e.g. WriteSonic, Jasper) use a subscription-based model that limits the number of words and articles produced in a given period, often costing around $100 per month. This can be especially helpful for businesses that need to produce content in bulk.
3. Spark ideas and overcome writer’s block
AI tools can be extremely helpful for writers who are struggling to come up with ideas for their content. AI tools can provide detailed outlines on what to include in the content and key points on the subject that can help spark ideas for content development.
This use case for AI writing tools seems to be most widely accepted. Copy/paste directly from AI? Maybe not. But as Stephanie Walden, Freelance Writer & Editor explains, AI tools may be both helpful and acceptable for ideation, headline generation, outlining, etc.
Brooklin Nash, Founder at Beam Content, does not believe AI writing has a place in enterprise B2B content—except for perhaps in these sorts of use cases.
Downsides to using AI tools to create B2B content
But it’s not all sunshine and rainbows (or speed and efficiency) over in ChatGPT land. Mostly, people are concerned about what sort of quality they’re getting from AI writing tools.
A few of the big cons to using AI for blog writing include:
1. Quality concerns
Quality is always a concern with AI-generated content, as AI heavily relies on data analysis and algorithms to write content. Are you really adding anything new or valuable to the conversation if your content relies heavily on AI research and writing? Critics say no. And what about accuracy? Tools like ChatGPT make no claims of providing accurate content.
Content Strategist and Writer Brett Henley believes accuracy will be a significant hurdle for technical or niche industries, in particular.
And Freelance Writer Amna Aslam has not been impressed with the tool’s accuracy thus far.
AI-generated content can be flagged by search engines as plagiarizing other content, as many AI tools scrape pieces of content from other websites and then re-word them.
But there are a couple of layers to the concern of AI plagiarism.
The first plagiarism argument is that the AI tools are plagiarizing content and ideas they found online to create the content. As Freelancer Ariella Brown notes, these tools don’t cite their sources (why not?).
The second piece of the plagiarism argument is whether or not writers are stealing content from the AI tool itself. As Matt Solar, Co-founder at nDash, pointed out, ChatGPT claims that OpenAI owns whatever content the tool creates.
What if you edit the content? Combine answers from multiple queries? Add your own examples? Does this make it your own? No one’s clear on this yet. But as Andrew Tatton, Founder of Andrew Tatton Marketing & Consulting, argues:
“No ideas are truly original though 🤔 just remixes of other concepts. In that case, we all plagiarize 😅”
3. Risk of Google algorithms devaluing your content
Google’s Helpful Content System aims to reward pages that provide helpful and original content written by people for people. As AI-writing tools analyze search engine results without truly understanding what the searcher is looking for, this can result in devalued content.
Parth Parmar, Founder & CEO at DigitalSitara, says AI content is still much too easy to detect—and your site will get crushed if you use AI for blog writing.
We’re already seeing a variety of tools pop up that can identify AI-written content (ironically, these tools are built on AI themselves).
4. Lack of E-A-T
Closely related to the quality concerns is the lack of expertise, authoritativeness and trustworthiness (E-A-T) that is present in AI-generated content. Google’s algorithms use E-A-T as a factor to rank content, so it is important to make sure that any content produced by AI writing tools is backed up by real human writers who can provide the necessary expertise and authority.
So, what’s the verdict—AI for blog writing or no?
AI writing tools can provide a great deal of efficiency and cost savings for B2B content marketers and their writers. When used properly, AI writing tools can help writers produce content in a timely and cost-effective manner.
But it’s important to understand and account for the potential drawbacks of using these tools, such as quality concerns, plagiarism and the lack of E-A-T.
If you’re going to give AI a go, consider these precautions:
Make sure the AI tool has been trained on a diverse dataset that represents the target audience and industry.
Verify the accuracy of the information generated by the AI tool and fact-check any data or statistics used in the content (and add sources!).
Include at least one round of human review and editing to ensure relevance, readability, and accuracy.
Be transparent about the role of AI in the content creation process and clearly label the generated content as such.
Monitor the performance of the AI-generated content and make adjustments as needed to optimize results.
I’m currently running my own AI writing experiment, so stay tuned for additional insights and recommendations. ✌️
You might also want to check out: Will Machine Learning Change the Landscape of Content Marketing?