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As AI infiltrates PR, here are 5 use cases and watch outs pros must heed

by | May 22, 2023 | Public Relations

We need to keep up with the advancement of AI in marketing communications and PR. With recent advancements in content creation, social and news media monitoring and listening, as well as predictive earned media placement, AI is proving that it can be a resourceful tool for many PR practitioners. As the technology quickly progresses, many teams are exploring use cases while also ensuring the practice of original creativity makes its way into work output. 

As teams evaluate what is helpful or not in their day-to-day PR efforts, here are some ways that AI can continue to be leveraged, along with a few watch outs. 

If AI can help spark ideas for an article, feel free to explore prompts to help get your creative juices flowing

But beware, if you have an interesting idea that you don’t want to share with the masses, you may not want to input it into an AI interface, as others may be able to build off of it in the future, resulting in the potential that your once unique idea becomes ubiquitous. 

Are you building a newsroom or something else that needs filler content to showcase a proof of concept or minimal viable product (MVP)?

Move over Lorem Ipsum text. Filler text generated by AI with the purpose to update at a later date can give clients an idea of what your content will look like in the future. Just be sure to crystallize that the content is for placement only (FPO). 

How confident are you that your current monitoring services are catching the majority of your share of voice?

As social media communities continue to grow, especially within more visually focused platforms like Instagram and TikTok, many services are not reporting visual results that do not include a mention or tag in a post. For instance, perhaps your naming rights on an event arena isn’t being captured to its fullest, or perhaps your retail brand is being worn on a clothing article and is going unmeasured against your complete market share. By leveraging visual AI scanning tools, you will be able to upload your brand logo directly into the platform to get more image results mentions on social or news media.

Cybersecurity and reputation management concerns keep all PR pros up at night

If you represent a big brand or a company in a regulated industry and are worried about a negative snowball effect happening on social or in the news in the blink of an eye, lean into services that can leverage a combination of AI and human intelligence to identify threats in real-time so teams can mitigate risk before issues hit the news cycle. Just be sure to ask questions about how the platform can be customized against the key issues you and your client teams are most interested in protecting. 

As you evaluate the variety of AI tools that can be helpful for your team or firm, it is imperative to consider where your colleagues fall on the basic PR skill spectrum

Entry-level practitioners should be focused on developing as many skills as possible, so if they are leaning on AI for writing for instance, they are taking away opportunities to strengthen basic content creation capabilities. Fundamental skill development without AI should not be lost. 

One of the greatest things that I have learned about being a manager is the need to consistently evaluate if I am providing my team with the appropriate tools and resources to get their job done and do it well. AI certainly can help with that, but we must also ensure that we are not inhibiting growth opportunities to apply strategic thinking and stretch creativity. 

AI is not going anywhere anytime soon, and will only continue to progress. But as time passes, practitioners should also expect more regulation, underscoring the need to leverage wisely, and not be codependent on the technology to get the job done.

Beth Thompson
Beth Thompson is VP, Director of PR & Social Media at Gatesman.

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