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Teresa Zhou

Published on

June 4, 2024


AI, artificial intelligence, innovation, PR, public relations

We've all seen and heard about artificial intelligence (AI) in countless discussions, articles, and company announcements.

The reality is that AI has moved past the inflection point to become an integral part of our everyday lives. It is no longer just the domain of tech companies, experts and enthusiasts. It has permeated various industries, including public relations (PR). In fact, we’ve already seen some important use cases in the sector – from Ukraine’s new AI spokesperson Victoria Shi, to AI model Aitana, to FKA Twigs creating an AI deepfake to engage with fans.

It’s clear that we cannot rest just on understanding what AI is but also explore how we can leverage these advancements in our work and integrated PR strategies. In this post, we’ll explore three practical applications and benefits of AI in the world of communications.

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AI Personalities and What It Means for PR

Lil Miquela began in 2016 as the world’s first virtual influencer who is estimated to have a net worth of $10 million as of 2023. She took the world by storm at the time of her release and currently boasts 2.6 million followers. A few years on, new AI personalities have come into the fore like Spanish AI model Aitana who earns up to $10,000 a month, and Japan’s AI fashionista Imma who has worked with several brands including Balmain and Coach. These AI personalities mimic human behavior, creating a more relatable and engaging presence for their audiences.

Meanwhile, Ukraine appointed a new AI spokesperson last month to make official statements on behalf of its foreign ministry. While the official reason cited is to “save time and resources” for diplomats, it’s not farfetched to guess a second reason – and that is to get the target off diplomats’ backs. Alongside the news in the same month is FKA Twigs announcing her use of AI to create a deepfake of herself to engage with fans and journalists so she can focus on her music. To be deployed later this year, her “AI twigs” is trained in her personality, has her exact tone of voice and can communicate in French, Korean and Japanese.

For PR professionals, this raises intriguing possibilities: Could AI personas be used to front PR campaigns and announcements to drive more efficiency whilst reducing risk of a digital witch hunt on spokespeople around sensitive topics? While AI can mimic human intelligence, it still requires human judgment and creativity to ensure effective and ethical communication.

How Brands Can Use ChatGPT or Create Custom GPTs

While many are familiar with ChatGPT, the full potential of this natural language processing tool often goes untapped.

Beyond using it as an alternative to search engines or for broad writing tasks like drafting a press release for an announcement, PR professionals can and should be utilizing ChatGPT for more sophisticated tasks. This process involves providing detailed briefs and scenarios based on non-sensitive information that will guide ChatGPT in simulating a particular personality or professional role to provide tailored responses.

Here is an example provided to get started:

Define the Persona:

  • Example: You want ChatGPT to act as a senior PR strategist.
  • Prompt: “For this interaction, adopt the persona of a senior PR strategist with 10 years of experience in the tech industry. You are knowledgeable about crisis management, media relations, and strategic communications.”

Provide Context and Scenario:

  • Example: Crafting a response to a media inquiry.
  • Prompt: “You are responding to a journalist’s inquiry about a recent [Insert non-confidential incident] at [Company Name]. Draft a professional and reassuring statement that addresses the incident, outlines the steps being taken to resolve the issue, and emphasizes the company’s commitment to [Insert relevant value].”

Incorporate Specific Instructions:

  • Example: Tailoring tone and style.
  • Prompt: “Ensure your response is concise, confident, and emphasizes transparency. Use a calm and professional tone that reassures stakeholders and maintains the company’s credibility.”

Moreover, OpenAI’s introduction of custom GPTs opens new frontiers. Brands can develop their own GPTs tailored to specific needs, such as a custom GPT that journalists can interact with to get precise information about a company in a conversational manner. This personalized touch can enhance the content creation process, improve media relations and streamline media interactions.

How PR Professionals Can Make Use of Generative AI Tools

From text generation to multimedia creation, the array of Generative AI (GenAI) solutions available today is vast and continually expanding. AI algorithms enhance these capabilities, providing powerful tools for content creation and communication.

Beyond visual content generation, one significant application is transcreation. Platforms like HeyGen and Nova A.I can translate internal memos and external announcements into various languages through videos while cloning the natural peaking voice of the spokesperson, ensuring target audiences receive consistent and understandable messages in a personalized way.

All that said, it is crucial to use these technologies ethically. This means not only double-checking AI-generated content for accuracy and relevance but also recognizing and mitigating potential biases. It’s also important to double-check the legal terms and licensing agreements of these platforms to ensure compliance with commercial use policies.

Artificial Intelligence Done Correctly

All in all, we are in an exciting era where AI offers countless possibilities for enhancing our daily work processes and storytelling capabilities. As PR professionals, it’s important that we remain up to date with not just the latest tools but also the evolving regulations and frameworks across the globe.

In the United States, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has issued guidelines to prevent deceptive practices involving AI, emphasizing transparency and accountability. Countries like Singapore and Australia have also followed suit, with the former implementing the Model AI Governance Framework and the latter an AI Ethics Framework. There is also the upcoming EU Artificial Intelligence Act that aims to ensure that AI technologies are developed and used responsibly.

AI can be a force for good – but it is on us to mold it the right way and ensure that AI serves as an ally to human ingenuity rather than a replacement.

If you’re interested, you can check out our Futures Hub page to discover how we’re integrating modern technologies of today like AI into our services to lead the charge into the future of PR.

P.S: This blog post was obviously written with the help of ChatGPT. We have to practice what we preach!

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