Every knowledge worker I know is totally mesmerized by the idea of writing content with AI. I’ve tried it for a while now and it can be helpful.
But if you use AI without a good strategy, you will simply waste your time. For example, look at what Jasper AI wrote as an intro paragraph for this article:
“AI is rapidly changing the way we live, work and communicate. From self-driving cars to virtual assistants, it seems like there’s no limit to what this technology can achieve. And when it comes to writing, AI is already making a significant impact.
Whether you’re a blogger, journalist, or copywriter, there are numerous tools available that can help you improve your writing skills and productivity. In this article, we’ll explore some of the ways in which you can leverage AI to take your writing to the next level. So if you’re ready to enhance your craft and streamline your workflow, read on!”
Not bad, right? But it lacks human connection. Every person (or AI) could write that paragraph. And for that reason, it will not stand out.
You read this because you want to hear my personal perspective on how you can use AI to improve your writing. You don’t want AI to tell you how to use AI.
A few ways I’ve used AI
In my eyes, AI is not creative. It simply serves your old ideas in a different way. It can’t come up with new perspectives, at least for now.
But you can use AI to write better. Here’s how.
- Email subject lines, article headlines, one-liners, marketing slogans, and so forth — AI is good at that type of thing. For example, I asked Jasper to write an email headline for my online course, digitalbusiness.school, and it gave me “Tired of working a job you hate?” I liked it. But when I asked it to write the email itself it was so bad I couldn’t use a thing.
- Research — Need to know the top websites, blogs, and social media profiles that cover a topic? Ask AI. Need to know what something means? Ask AI. For example, I asked, “Explain the attribution bias” and it gave me a great explanation.
- Proofreading — This is the first thing most people use AI for. Grammarly is the biggest one and it works fine. But it’s not 100% correct. You still need to read it yourself.
- Generate article ideas — Need ideas to write about for your blog? Just ask AI to give you a list of ideas to write about. Just don’t let the AI do the writing.
- Transcription — If you do want to write long content, I would rely on transcription. Speak your ideas into a microphone and use an AI text-to-speech service. Then, use AI to rewrite your own content if it doesn’t read well. But to be honest, it’s still time-consuming so I don’t think that’s better than writing things yourself.
These tasks can help you to save some time here and there. It’s not life-changing, but it can make your life as a writer a bit simpler.
But remember that writing is something enjoyable and fun. I read the other day that Amazon was flooded with AI-generated books.
What are these people thinking? That readers are idiots? Who reads nonsense books that AI generated?
Things you can’t use AI for (yet)
Look, AI is not the answer to everything.
It simply brings out people’s character. If you’re lazy, AI makes you lazier. If you’re Type A, it will make you Type A+.
The truth is you can’t use AI for a lot of things. Here are some things AI can’t do well.
- Write long-form content — I’ve tried to see what it comes up with. And objectively speaking, it’s not good yet. I’m not a content marketer or a freelance writer. I’m not afraid that AI will take my job so I’m not biased. I write for the art, but I’m an entrepreneur and investor. So I looked at AI from the latter perspective. But it’s still not good. I wouldn’t use it to write entire articles or books.
- Share facts — AI makes up stuff as it goes. So always double-check every number, year, date, or any other important fact. The AI idiot keeps lying because it has no conscience.
- Be creative — You won’t find entertaining or fun content written by AI. At least I haven’t found it. Every AI-generated content sounds like a 50-year-old former banker turned content marketer wrote it.
So here’s the thing: I’m someone who earns money with his words.
And I didn’t use AI to write this article. That fact alone should tell you everything about the present state of AI.
If I could use it to write precisely what I had in my mind for this article, why wouldn’t I use it? But because it can’t, I will keep using my keyboard to communicate with you.
After all, this is what we humans do. We’re all about communicating ideas and stories with each other.