AI will kill generic content marketing – and usher in a new age of POV content
Laura Marzec of The Mx Group says that the age of generic SEO-driven how-to posts are numbered, thanks to a coming deluge of AI content. The answer? Leaning into your own, real, point of view.
Will AI kill generic content marketing? / Joe Shields via Unsplash
When OpenAI’s ChatGPT first burst onto the scene, it disrupted industries across the board — and it gave content marketers new ways to do our jobs. But that newfound freedom came with a catch: Open-source generative AI models gave anyone and everyone with internet access an easy button for content creation.
Draft an article, write a newsletter, or polish off a social post in seconds: sounds like a content marketer’s dream, right?
Well, we soon learned otherwise. AI models flooded the market with generic copy. Companies (and their customers) discovered that as the obstacles to creating content dropped, so did standards. The result? Loads of content rife with bad data, innate bias, inaccurate info, and those all-too-common AI hallucinations.
Brands looking to cut through a sea of AI-generated content must shift accordingly. SEO-dictated blog posts and generic how-to articles won’t cut it when today’s AI models can whip them up in seconds. So how can you futureproof your brand content? Focus on something AI can’t replicate: your very own point of view (POV).
POV content is future-proof content
With AI threatening to homogenize content marketing and messaging, brands must double down on building their presence and reputation through POV content. Think of it as a proprietary value-add for your business. The focus should be on creating and sharing journalism-driven stories, with original research and personalized perspectives that make up your brand DNA.
That means developing omnichannel content — for newsletters, magazines, podcasts, social media channels, events — that reinforces your brand voice and perspective. You also need to stake your claim on the channels and in the communities where your audience is most active and where you can continually promote your POV.
Here are some tips for cultivating a strong POV:
1. Know your why
Focus less on the latest tools and tech, and more on why you’re creating content. Pin down your brand mission and values. What makes you unique? What principles define your work? What topics can you cover in richer and deeper ways than your competitors do? Defining these areas lets you create content in spaces where you have the greatest opportunity to be an authority and thought leader in your field.
2. Double down on storytelling
Talk to your customers and stakeholders to uncover their true needs — and how you should be talking about them. Do a little opposition research to determine where you fit in the competitive landscape. Then focus on crafting perspectives your audience can only get from you.
Prioritize subject matter expert interviews, original research, case studies and insider insights. And before creating any new piece of content, take time to ask: Can my audience get this content any place else? Can it be easily copied? (If that’s a yes, rethink it.)
3. Raise the bar on your brand standards
Establish — and uphold — editorial guidelines based on your brand pillars and quality standards. Tap skilled reporters, writers, editors, fact-checkers, and researchers to develop content that fits your perspective but also adheres to journalistic principles, especially accuracy.
4. Balance AI and human strengths
There’s no ignoring the benefits of using AI for ideation and amplifying content. Go ahead, explore and experiment. Then you can keep the human talent focused on content strategy and creation. If you get it right, you’re elevating your experts and strategists — freeing them from repetitive work to focus on high-level thinking and planning.
AI can absolutely save content teams time in areas like research, brainstorming and outlining ideas — as long as you always maintain human oversight. That’s how you ensure automation doesn’t dilute your brand POV.
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Authentic = human-centric
We hear a lot about how audiences today are demanding authentic content from brands. But what does that really mean? Being authentic is showing our audiences that there are real people behind the brand: fellow humans with feelings, thoughts, opinions — and, most critically to content teams, expertise.
AI can’t do that. That’s not to say AI is the bad guy (or bot). Most of us can agree that AI and automation tools are reshaping content marketing in positive ways. They can enhance many facets of content planning and development with machine precision — from helping ideate campaigns to summarizing content, classifying text, identifying content gaps and more.
Some see AI replacing human creators entirely. They’re dead wrong. While generative AI models can automate tasks and recreate information in new ways, they can’t think. They have no real experience. And no matter how slick the copy, they don’t have a real POV.
Content by The Drum Network member:
The Mx Group
The Mx Group is the second largest independent, integrated B2B marketing agency in the U.S. Our mission is to impact the marketplace for companies that impact the world. For over 30 years, we’ve created meaningful end-to-end buying experiences for B2B brands. Our clients are leaders and innovators in energy, utilities, manufacturing, hospitality, automotive, health care, technology and SaaS who rely on our expertise to influence and grow their businesses. Our relationships with our clients and people are why B2B Marketing recognized us as Agency of the Year. Our headquarters are in Chicago, but our reach is global. Whether a client is an established or startup B2B brand, we have the people and perspective to be a strong partner that makes a difference.
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