Leveraging AI in Brand and Communications: Key Considerations
Artificial intelligence (AI) is a hot topic that generates both curiosity and concern among professionals across various industries. AI tools such as xiQ, ChatGPT, Discord’s Midjourney, and DALL-E have raised profound questions about what the future holds for brand and communications work. However, many experts believe that AI is not meant to exist in isolation but should support brand and communications professionals rather than replace them.
According to a recent survey, 90% of knowledge workers would like AI to handle at least one of their workplace tasks such as composing emails, drafting documents, or answering questions from clients and customers. So, it's clear that many look to AI for efficiency gains. However, before deploying these tools, brand and communication leaders must understand the use cases for AI, its potential dangers and limitations, and the need for context provided by human professionals.
AI has the potential to be a powerful tool for the brand and communications function. Here are just some of the ways teams can take advantage of this technology to conduct efficient research on complex topics, drive creativity, and generate eye-catching original imagery.
Researching and Simplifying Complex Topics
AI tools like ChatGPT can expedite understanding by summarizing research, identifying meta-trends, and explaining technical concepts with neutrality. This can be particularly helpful in collaborating with product teams on campaign creatives or narratives, as you can gain a wider understanding of the market drivers and can ask contextual questions to develop stronger differentiators.
Ensuring Accessibility and Inclusion
Running draft copy through an AI tool to check for potential bias is a simple way of helping to ensure that your content is inclusive and excludes gender bias or phrases that may not be understood globally.
AI tools can help branding and communications professionals with event and campaign planning by drawing on the content created to suggest overarching themes within your proposed parameters. Plugging a few topics and parameters aligned with the purpose and scope of an upcoming event into an AI tool, and the tool responds with initial ideas to serve as a jumping-off point for planning conversations.
Generating Proprietary, Innovative Imagery
With new AI tools like Midjourney and the various iterations of DALL-E, marketers have the opportunity to break stock image patterns. These tools can generate digital images from natural language descriptions or “prompts.” From an image of a cat dressed like an avocado on a skateboard in a Renaissance style to a photo-real image of a family standing under a stormy sky, all wearing your brand colors, these tools can create and edit any image you can imagine in any style you choose.
However, AI has its limitations, and users must be aware of its pitfalls. Strong brand and communications work requires context, which demands human intervention. Inherent bias is one of the most talked-about shortcomings of AI tools, and it’s up to users to prevent these tools from injecting that bias into marketing and advertising materials. Furthermore, brand and communications leaders must prevent these technologies from bringing back the hyperbole and inauthenticity that characterized much of the marketing and advertising language of decades past.
While AI tools can be powerful engines for creativity, businesses cannot rely on technology alone to speak for their brands. Companies that deploy AI successfully will recognize its value as a tool to complement and support the work of brand and communications professionals, who will continue to provide the human context necessary to communicate with nuance, empathy, and authenticity.
In summary, AI has immense potential in brand and communications work, but its deployment requires careful consideration and context provided by human professionals to create authentic and impactful messaging.