Almost every specialist, even if indirectly related to digital technology, already tried to communicate with ChatGPT or similar artificial intelligence (AI). In the field of PR and communications, the neural network can be a useful tool to support professionals. However, despite the fact that many experts predict AI glory in humanitarian industries, in the near future the creation of PR strategies will not take place without a human person.
Professional communicator, whether it is a PR specialist, expert on interaction with public authorities or the employee responsible for internal communications of the company, needs two main units for his work: analysis and interpretation.
Analysis. For effective communication at any level and in any industry you must work with a large amount of data. This is the immediate information on the subject of communication in a specific context, and the necessary data on the purposes of communication from all interested persons to determine the appropriate line of interpretation.
Interpretation. Application of analysis results of business needs and of the subject of communication to direct communication with the outside world through different channels and using different kinds of tools and forms of interaction.
In general, communication is a complex process that is not limited exclusively to the pipeline composition of quotes or writing of texts, albeit detailed ones, but of the same type. First of all, communications require direct contact with all stakeholders both within organizations and beyond. Agenda, potential risks, timing and many other over-nuanced factors are inherent conditions in which PR and public communications processes take place. Ultimately, real communications are about bringing critical information at the right time in the right form to the right people, about the prevention of reputational damage and about the way out of crises.
Artificial Intelligence and PR
Truly effective PR strategies require a deep level of understanding and a variety of associated factors that AI is not capable of providing, at least for now. Of course, the neural network is able to listen, understand and respond, but it is not a hypersensitive phenomenon, capable of taking care about semitones.
For example, this is what the AI itself (ChatGPT) thinks about the pros and cons of its own use in communications:
Big data analysis: AI can process and analyze large amounts of data from various sources, such as social media and news, which allows you to determine the trends and moods of users, and also predict their behavior.
Process automation: using AI can reduce execution costs of routine tasks such as monitoring and media analysis.
Lack of flexibility: AI cannot replace fully manual analysis and assessment of importance and significance of the data in the context of a specific PR strategy.
The absence of the human element: AI cannot replace fully human factor such as emotion, intuition and creativity, which can be important when creating PR strategies.
The potential of AI in terms of analysis is high indeed, but we do not yet get clear signals that it can carry out a full interpretation.
Artificial intelligence is efficiency in the technical sense of the word. Today it is really able to solve quickly routine problems like media monitoring, short-form help, or text templates.
Let’s assume that PR specialists will transfer part of the contextual knowledge of AI and teach it to navigate the details better. For example, distinguishing between the types of audiences, to whom communication is addressed, on the basis of a large number of specific introductory data. The robot may be able to compose texts with more than a high degree of individualization, but still it will not be able to focus on the real information needs of each group of addressees and match information to context in the same way as a person.
Let’s imagine a technically complex industry, for example, pharmaceuticals. It has large amounts of scientific data that AI is likely to analyze and highlight its key provisions. It is also possible that the machine can be entrusted with comparing the data of studies with the statistics of a specific market and getting the data that will form the basis of your argument in
specific geography. At the same time, AI will no longer be able to offer direct communication, speakers’ selection, and a set of arguments with binding, for example, to cultural references.
Do not forget about the issue of privacy: if you use open source platforms, the information you exchange with AI can potentially appear outside of the platform itself.
It is difficult to deny that AI penetrates professional life and is able to support a specialist in a number of technical tasks, but talking about the full implementation of the neural network in the compilation and implementation of communication strategies is premature if at all possible.
By Valentin Shatalov, Specialist in Public and Strategic Communications