My experience using ChatGPT for Keppel Leopard Creative.
One Sunday I sat bleary-eyed at my laptop. It was late, and the only light in the room was coming from my desk lamp. For the last 3 hours, I had been creating and scheduling my social media and I was on my last caption of the night. But for the life of me, I had no idea what to put.
My Advanced Higher English teacher once said "Nothing is scarier than a blank piece of paper" and - although technology has moved on somewhat - the blank caption box is as scary as the paper.
This was the first time I tried out ChatGPT.
I just needed something. Just to start me off, give me the first paragraph or just something to kick my brain into action for the last 10 minutes. I typed into the box my query:
"Write an Instagram post based on the heading Let's Work Together in a caring and friendly tone. No hard sell, just an extended opportunity to talk."
And just like that, it started to generate a caption. Something that I'd sat for half an hour trying to start had been done in the blink of an eye.
You'd think at that point I would've copied, pasted and crawled into bed. But I didn't.
If you didn't know already I'm a bit of a geek when it comes to things "technical". And whilst most things end up broken (much to my dad's despair) it has taught me a lot about understanding how these things work.
AI is a computer. And whilst yes, it can learn things (hence the reason why it's called Artificial Intelligence) it needs the initial data input to start it all off - think of it like the old BBC computers where you had to type in command code to get it to do anything.
And that's ultimately what you're doing in ChatGPT: you're putting in the data you want and it pops it back out - in my case with a lot of emojis and a few hashtags at the end.
But with ChatGPT its data is the entire internet, and I'm sure you already know that the internet is pretty big!
This is one of the reasons why creatives like me have been protesting about the use of AI. Currently, TV and film production in the US is on strike and AI is one of the reasons why.
ChatGPT doesn't see people's work as their intellectual property; it doesn't see the late nights, the blood, sweat and tears that it's taken to create something that brings the production companies millions.
To AI it's just data.
This is one of the reasons why I didn't just hit copy that night. It was taking the words of other creatives to give to me, without their permission, without rumination.
Did I feel a bit of a fraud? I have to admit I did.
And there was another reason. Because as much as I had given the parameters of my enquiry, it didn't sound like me in the slightest.
I will admit I have corporate-creative-itus. It's a terrible infliction where you have to try so bloody hard not to sound like you're speaking to board members or shareholders in a building with glass walls and office cubicles. I'm used to being corporate, so sounding like me - the person you'll meet on the street - is hard to translate into written content.
But this wasn't the problem I had with ChatGPT. Instead, it had gone the complete opposite way and now I sounded like a mix of a surfer dude and someone who was much more woo-woo than I am (no offence to either of these two groups). There were "vibes", there were "soulful connections", there were "magical interactions" and "navigating pathways" that were all...so not me.
Of course, this was the first time I'd ever generated something from ChatGPT. And as I said before it has to learn your ways of doing things (in which there is a prompt that allows you to teach it).
So have I stopped using AI?
The short answer is: no.
Whilst my first attempt was slightly ropey what it did do was give me enough suggestions to write my own caption, and that's what I've continued to use it for. Out of curiosity, I did experiment with a few posts purely generated by ChatGPT, but those posts tanked.
Like Pablo Picasso said, "Good artists copy, great artists steal. " So while I'm not taking everything that is given to me as verbatim, I am using it to access my own creative thinking.
Should you use AI?
There is a way of using AI successfully. And whilst there are millions of "How to use ChatGPT" downloads that exist, very little mentions the impact on your brand (which is what I'm here to do.)
So what are the repercussions if you get it wrong?
Well, for a start if there are swaths of your content that is clearly someone else's you could be looking at some sort of cease and desist or lawsuit, and no one needs that right now.
But ultimately you won't resonate with your audience. The person they thought you were has gone, and instead you now sound like someone with multiple personalities. And for a business that means loss of clients.
As I said previously, my main use for AI is to help me create my own bespoke content, but the only reason I can do that is because I know my brand inside and out. I know what I should sound like and what is going to resonate with you - my audience. These are two vital parts of your brand that you have to understand in order to use AI correctly. It can only generate what you've asked it to.
You should also be mindful and respectful of where the content is coming from - whether that's from a copywriter, a designer, or an artist. AI has taken that content from a real person to generate what you've asked it to, and if you're getting into specifics then maybe it's time to hire someone and use their amazing talent directly, which has all the human passion and emotion that no computer can replicate completely.
Katie is the Founder and CEO of Keppel Leopard Creative - a branding agency dedicated to helping female entrepreneurs find and create their brand identities. Check out the services she offers here>>