Future of Marketing: Harnessing AI with a Human Touch

Have you ever experienced that eerie moment halfway through an article or ad when it dawns on you, “Wait a minute, a human didn’t write this; it’s the work of AI!” We’ve all been there—it’s akin to expecting the crisp bite of a juicy apple only to discover it’s made of plastic.

The reality is, AI is now churning out content at a pace that rivals a popcorn machine in a movie theatre. However, this AI-generated content often lacks the warmth, humour, and elusive “je ne sais quoi” that defines our human touch. This, my friends, is the problem we face in today’s marketing landscape.

But here’s the exciting part: with just a touch of human editing and strategic guidance, AI-generated content can transcend from merely good to virtually indistinguishable from the work of top human writers. That’s the sweet spot we aim for, precisely what we’ll delve into in this discussion.

Understanding the Limitations of AI-Generated Content

Now, before we dive into the intricacies of why human editing plays a crucial role, it’s imperative to grasp the limitations that AI-generated content faces. Let’s dissect these constraints.

Marketers Using AI for Article Writing

Overestimation of AI Capabilities in Content Generation

As AI gains traction in content creation, there’s a tendency to overestimate its prowess. It’s tempting to be lured by the promise of automated, effortless article generation. However, AI isn’t a magical wizard producing flawless, engaging content at a whim.

AI writing tools structure information, identify trends, and employ natural language processing (NLP) to simulate human-like text. Nevertheless, they need a more nuanced understanding of context and the innate creativity found in human writers.

AI still needs to discover emotions, humour, sarcasm, and cultural references (at least for now), resulting in technically correct but often flat and uninspiring content.

The Risks of Factual Inaccuracies and Low-Quality Content

Among the most significant risks associated with AI-generated content are factual inaccuracies and subpar output.

While AI tools can aggregate data from various sources, they need to have the human ability to distinguish between reliable and unreliable information. This can lead to content filled with misleading or outright false information, posing a threat to your brand’s credibility.

Despite their ability to construct sentences using sophisticated language models, AI-generated content often needs more cohesion, logic, and flow than readers expect in high-quality content. This deficiency results in unengaging material but can leave readers needing clarification, affecting your brand’s image and authority.

In specific fields, particularly in “Your Money Your Life” (YMYL) niches, inaccuracies can have severe consequences. YMYL content pertains to information that, if presented inaccurately, could directly impact an individual’s health, happiness, safety, or financial stability. Think health advice, financial planning, or legal matters.

Consider the healthcare sector, where an AI tool might misconstrue data and recommend a dangerously high insulin dosage for managing diabetes. Following such advice could lead to severe health complications or even death. While this is an extreme scenario, it underscores the potential dangers of unverified AI-generated content.

Striking the Right Balance: Content Velocity vs. Content Quality

In the dynamic realm of digital marketing, a constant struggle exists between content velocity and content quality. While the allure of frequent content publication to match competitors and sustain online visibility is undeniable, maintaining equilibrium is crucial to prevent potential pitfalls.

The Hazards of Prioritising Content Velocity Over Quality

Picture yourself as a reader encountering a daily barrage of articles from a specific brand. Initially, you’re impressed by their prolific output. However, upon closer inspection, a recurring pattern emerges – convoluted sentences, factual inaccuracies, and a lack of substantive value characterise the content. Would you continue to place trust in this brand?

The lesson is clear – prioritising content velocity at the expense of quality can be risky.

While it might yield short-term benefits in terms of visibility and click-through rates, over time, it’s likely to damage your brand’s reputation and erode reader trust. Additionally, it may result in decreased engagement and higher bounce rates as readers swiftly exit subpar content.

The Continued Significance of Quality Content for Ranking and Authority

In contrast, for valid reasons, high-quality content remains a cornerstone of digital marketing strategy. Well-researched, accurate, and engaging content resonates with your target audience and search engines. Google’s sophisticated ranking algorithm favours quality content that adds value to readers.

Beyond SEO, quality content contributes to building authority. It positions your brand as a trusted expert in your field, a reliable source of information and insights. This, in turn, can lead to heightened engagement, improved conversions, and enhanced brand loyalty. Balancing the quest for content velocity with an unwavering commitment to quality ensures sustained success in the competitive digital landscape.

Marketers - Striking the Right Balance: Content Velocity vs. Content Quality

Elevating AI-Generated Content through Human Editing

Incorporating AI into your content creation process doesn’t render human involvement obsolete; on the contrary, it is in the synergy of AI capabilities and human finesse that the real magic unfolds.

My Journey with AI and Human Editing

As a seasoned digital marketer, my venture into AI has been an enlightening odyssey. Witnessing firsthand how AI streamlines the content creation process, effortlessly generating multiple drafts in a fraction of the time a human would, has been nothing short of transformative.

However, there exists an inherently human quality in the act of writing—a subtlety and nuance that AI, despite its capabilities, struggles to replicate fully. Thus, I’ve embraced a collaborative approach, utilising AI to enhance and expedite my content creation, not to replace it entirely.

Every piece generated by AI undergoes a meticulous human editing process. I infuse the AI output with a human touch, refining the language, ensuring factual accuracy, and, most crucially, crafting a narrative that resonates with readers profoundly.

Estimating Editing Requirements in AI-Generated Content

You might ponder, “Isn’t that a substantial workload? How much editing does AI-generated content truly need?” The answer is nuanced—it depends. Some pieces emerge surprisingly well-formed, necessitating only minor tweaks and polish. Others may demand a more substantial overhaul to align with desired quality standards and resonate with the target audience.

My rule of thumb? Allocate approximately 40-60% of the content creation time to editing and refining AI-generated output.

This isn’t a rigid prescription but rather a guiding principle. It underscores the importance of dedicating substantial time to the human element, ensuring that every piece of content aligns with your brand’s voice, meets quality benchmarks, and delivers authentic value to your readers.

Google’s Criteria for Quality Content

Google’s overarching mission to “organise the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful” profoundly influences how it assesses and ranks content. What, then, does Google define as “quality content”?

Effective Communication with the Target Audience

A cornerstone of Google’s content quality evaluation is its effectiveness in communicating with the intended audience. Your content must resonate with the people it aims to reach.

While SEO techniques, such as incorporating Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) keywords and links, play a vital role in enhancing visibility, they are not the sole determinants. Overemphasising keyword density at the expense of readability and relevance can backfire. Google’s algorithms have evolved to a level where they can penalise ‘keyword-stuffed’ content lacking genuine value for the reader.

So, how should you approach this? Start by thoroughly understanding your audience’s needs, interests, and challenges. Craft content that meaningfully addresses these aspects in an engaging and accessible manner.

Effective communication establishes you as an authority on the subject and enhances your website’s trustworthiness.

Engaging content contributes to increased average session duration, a crucial ranking signal for Google. Essentially, the more valuable your content, the longer users stay on your page, signalling to Google that your content is beneficial and deserving of a higher search result position.

Providing Value and Establishing Authority

Another pivotal aspect of Google’s assessment of quality content is the value it provides. Does your content offer fresh insights, or is it a reiteration of well-worn ideas? High-value content is original, comprehensive, and pertinent, directly contributing to a positive user experience.

Google also places great importance on authority. It favours content from sources that consistently deliver accurate, trustworthy, and valuable information. Earning authority isn’t about being the loudest or flooding the digital space with content. It’s about showcasing expertise and reliability over time.

If your content were a person, Google would want it to be a knowledgeable friend—clear in communication, genuinely helpful, and trusted by others.

In an AI-dominated content landscape, achieving this necessitates the human touch—understanding the audience’s needs, offering unique insights, and building authentic connections. Going the extra mile sets your content apart in the vast sea of AI-generated content.

Selecting the Right Editor for AI-Generated Content

Just as every artist benefits from a discerning critic, an effective AI-driven content strategy requires a skilled human editor. But what qualities should you seek in an editor for AI-generated content, and where can you find such talent?

Key Skills Required in an AI Content Editor

Editing AI-generated content goes beyond traditional editing skills. While a solid grammar, style, and punctuation foundation is essential, AI content editing demands additional expertise.

Finding the Right Editor for AI-Generated Content

One crucial skill is the ability to identify and rectify AI-specific errors. AI-generated content can sometimes be a bit ‘off’—featuring oddly structured sentences, incorrect facts, or phrases that lack coherence. A proficient AI editor must possess the understanding to spot these issues and the skill to address them while preserving the overall flow of the piece.

Equally vital is the capability to inject a human touch. A skilled AI content editor can take an AI-generated piece and breathe life into it, crafting a compelling narrative, infusing emotion, and tailoring it to the target audience.

Lastly, the right editor should be adaptable and capable of working with various AI tools and adjusting their editing approach based on the specific outputs of different AI models.

Platforms to Source Content Writers and Editors

So, where can you find these adept human editors with a knack for AI-generated content? Several online platforms cater to such needs:

  1. Freelance platforms: Websites like Upwork, Freelancer, and Fiverr are abundant with freelance writers and editors. You can post your requirements and invite freelancers to apply, or directly approach freelancers whose profiles align with your needs.
  2. Content creation agencies: Specialised companies in content production and editing can be pricier than individual freelancers, but they often offer a more comprehensive service. This may include content strategy, SEO optimisation, and more.
  3. Online networks: Platforms like LinkedIn and Facebook can be valuable sources for professional writers and editors. Seek individuals with a proven track record in content creation and editing, preferably with experience handling AI-generated content.

Humanising AI-Generated Content: A Step-by-Step Process

Integrating the ‘human touch’ into AI-generated content involves a meticulous process, balancing technology and creativity. Let’s delve into the key stages of this transformative journey.

Starting Point: Generating AI Content Outline

The process commences with the essential task of providing the AI with the requisite information. Human editors play a pivotal role in briefing AI comprehensively by dispelling the myth of AI omniscience. This includes insights into the target audience, key points to cover, and the context of the topic. The AI then takes this information to draft an initial content outline, forming the foundation for the subsequent steps.

However, the human editor’s duty doesn’t conclude here. They scrutinise the AI-generated outline, ensuring its comprehensiveness, logic, and alignment with the content’s objectives. The AI fleshes out the range only after meticulous review and potential refinement.

Section-by-section review and Reprompting

With the initial content in place, the human editor initiates a granular, section-by-section examination. Each segment undergoes scrutiny – Is the AI response relevant? Does it grasp the topic’s nuances? Does it adhere to the desired tone and style? Where shortcomings are identified, the editor intervenes, prompting the AI and guiding it toward a more desirable output.

Fact-checking and Surgical Editing for Final Refinement

The culmination of the humanising process involves fact-checking and surgical editing. The editor meticulously verifies the AI’s data, cross-referencing it with reliable sources to ensure accuracy. Factual inaccuracies are rectified, grammatical errors are addressed, and the content undergoes a comprehensive refinement. Awkward phrases are reworked, guaranteeing the content conveys information and does so in a polished, engaging manner.

Through these sequential steps, AI-generated content transcends mere technical correctness. It emerges as a piece that is informative, engaging, valuable, and distinctly ‘human.’ The harmonious integration of AI capabilities with human expertise results in content that resonates authentically with the audience.

Unlocking Synergy: The Benefits of AI and Human Editing Collaboration

In the dynamic realm of content creation, the amalgamation of AI and human editing emerges as a potent alliance, bringing many advantages. Let’s explore the specific benefits inherent in this harmonious union.

Saving Time and Improving Efficiency

The foremost advantage lies in the substantial enhancement of time efficiency. AI operates at lightning speed, capable of generating drafts in the time it takes a human writer to finish their morning coffee. This rapid pace liberates a significant portion of time, redirecting focus toward strategic tasks for editors and content teams.

AI’s immunity to writer’s block and fatigue ensures a consistent content output, contributing to sustained productivity.

Editing AI-generated content is often faster than editing human-written content. AI tends to make predictable, patterned mistakes, making corrections quicker and more straightforward once editors grasp these nuances.

Achieving Complete Topical Coverage

AI and human editing synergise seamlessly to achieve comprehensive topical coverage. AI’s ability to swiftly generate content at scale facilitates the creation of multiple pieces around a core topic, covering various subtopics. This interconnected web of content establishes your website as a go-to source for in-depth information on a specific subject.

Human editing is essential to manage the potential compromise in quality that can arise from the speed and scale of AI-generated content. Editors ensure accuracy, engagement, and real value, aligning with Google’s criteria for quality content.

Ensuring High-Quality, Humanised Content

Beyond speed and efficiency, the collaboration between AI and human editing is a testament to quality. While AI excels at producing quick drafts and extensive topic coverage, it often lacks the human touch that adds relatability and engagement to content.

Human editors play a transformative role, injecting warmth, emotion, and narrative flow into AI-generated content. They bridge the gap between technically correct yet sterile output and compelling, relatable reads. Human editors uphold factual accuracy, maintain the brand’s voice, and optimise content for SEO – areas where AI still seeks refinement.

In essence, AI and human editing synthesis delivers a content creation powerhouse – a blend of speed, efficiency, topic depth, and compelling quality that propels digital strategies to new heights.

How to Implement These Tips

Now that we’ve discussed the ‘why’ and ‘what’ of humanising AI-generated content, let’s dive into the ‘how.’ How can you put these insights into practice?

Identifying Suitable AI Content Generation Tools

The first step is choosing the right AI content-generation tool. Many options are available, each with their strengths and weaknesses.

Your selection should depend on your specific needs. What type of content do you produce most often? What’s your budget? How much content do you need to produce?

Some tools are excellent at generating short-form content like social media posts, while others excel at long-form content. Some are geared towards creative writing, others towards SEO or technical writing. Research different options, use free trials, and find the best fits your needs. Plain ol’ ChatGPT is a great place to begin if you would rather not pay to use third-party software.


Implementing Tips for Humanising AI-Generated Content: A Practical Guide

Now that we’ve delved into the rationale and strategies for humanising AI-generated content, let’s explore the practical steps to implement these insights effectively.

1. Identifying Suitable AI Content Generation Tools

Consider Your Needs: Begin by understanding your content requirements. What type of content do you predominantly produce? Assess your budget constraints and evaluate the volume of content you need.

Research and Trial: Investigate the available AI content generation tools, each with unique strengths. Some excel in short-form content, while others are tailored for long-form or specialised writing. Leverage free trials to test different tools and identify the one that aligns best with your content needs.

Example: Platforms like OpenAI’s GPT-3, Copy.ai, or Write sonic offer diverse capabilities suitable for various content types. Experimenting with ChatGPT, a powerful language model, provides an accessible starting point without additional costs.

2. Developing a Collaborative Workflow

Establish Clear Roles: Define the roles of AI and human editors in your content creation process. Understand where AI shines and where human input is irreplaceable.

Integration Planning: Strategise how AI-generated content and human editing will seamlessly integrate. This includes outlining specific responsibilities, workflows, and points of collaboration.

Example: Designate AI for initial content drafts, leveraging its speed and scalability. Human editors can then focus on refining, adding a human touch, and ensuring quality and accuracy.

3. Providing Comprehensive Briefs to AI

Thorough Briefing: Prioritise the provision of comprehensive briefs to AI. Equip it with the necessary information about your target audience, key points to cover, and the overall context of the topic.

Editorial Oversight: Ensure human editors review and refine the AI-generated outlines before content creation begins. This step guarantees a strong foundation aligned with your content goals.

Example: If using GPT-3, consider inputting detailed prompts and instructions to guide the AI in generating content that aligns with your brand voice and meets quality standards.

4. Section-by-section review and Reprompting

Detailed Review: Implement a meticulous section-by-section review of AI-generated content. Evaluate relevance, nuances, and adherence to the desired tone and style.

Reprompt as Needed: Where shortcomings are identified, human editors play a crucial role in reprompting the AI, steering it toward a more desirable output.

Example: If AI generates a section with factual inaccuracies or fails to capture the intended tone, human editors can intervene with specific prompts to rectify these issues.

5. Fact-checking and Surgical Editing

Fact-Checking Process: Enforce a robust fact-checking process. Human editors cross-reference AI-generated content with reliable sources to ensure accuracy.

Surgical Editing: Human editors engage in surgical editing, rectifying factual inaccuracies, addressing grammatical errors, and enhancing overall readability.

Example: Utilise external tools and resources to verify information provided by AI, ensuring that the final content aligns with your brand’s standards.

6. Continuous Learning and Refinement

Feedback Loop: Establish a feedback loop between AI and human editors. Leverage insights from the editing process to refine future interactions with the AI tool.

Iterative Improvement: Embrace a culture of continuous learning and improvement. Adjust your approach based on feedback, evolving content needs, and the evolving landscape of AI capabilities.

Example: Regularly review AI-generated content, analyse editorial feedback, and fine-tune the instructions provided to enhance the effectiveness of the collaborative process.


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7. Finding and Collaborating with Exceptional Content Editors

To successfully humanise AI-generated content, recruiting skilled content editors is paramount. Look for individuals possessing a flair for storytelling, keen attention to detail, and a profound understanding of your brand and target audience. Additionally, editors should exhibit comfort and enthusiasm in working with AI tools, showcasing an eagerness to learn and adapt to evolving technologies.

Key Attributes in Content Editors:

Storytelling Prowess: Seek editors with a natural aptitude for storytelling. This skill enhances the ability to infuse AI-generated content with a compelling narrative, making it more relatable and engaging.

Detail-oriented: Opt for editors with a meticulous eye for detail. This quality ensures that the final content adheres to grammatical and stylistic standards and aligns precisely with your brand’s voice and messaging.

Brand and Audience Understanding: Prioritise editors who demonstrate a deep understanding of your brand ethos and the characteristics of your target audience. This knowledge is instrumental in tailoring the content to resonate effectively with your specific readership.

AI Tool Proficiency: Choose editors who are comfortable working with AI tools. Their proficiency in navigating and leveraging these tools contributes to seamlessly integrating AI-generated content into your overall content strategy.

Fostering Effective Collaboration:

Set Clear Expectations: Clearly outline the roles and expectations for AI tools and human editors. Establish a transparent framework that defines when and how AI-generated content will be utilised and the specific responsibilities of human editors in the refinement process.

Establish Communication Channels: Create effective channels for communication between AI tools and human editors. Open lines of dialogue facilitate the exchange of insights, corrections, and improvements, fostering a collaborative atmosphere.

Encourage Continuous Learning: Cultivate an environment of continuous learning and adaptation. Encourage editors to stay updated on AI advancements and provide opportunities for training to enhance their proficiency in working with evolving technologies.

8. Consistently Reviewing and Improving the Editing Process

Regular Review: Avoid a ‘set it and forget it’ mentality. Regularly review the editing process to identify areas for improvement. Solicit feedback from editors regarding their experiences, challenges, and suggestions for refinement.

Watch for Patterns in AI Errors: Analyse patterns in the errors made by the AI tool. This observation helps fine-tune the briefing and editing guidelines, address recurring issues, and optimise the collaborative workflow.

Iterative Improvement: Embrace an iterative approach to improvement. Learn from each editing cycle, incorporating lessons into the next round. This continual refinement ensures that the editing process becomes more effective over time.

Staying Curious and Adaptable in the AI Landscape:

Remain Curious: The world of AI is dynamic. Encourage a culture of curiosity among your team. Stay abreast of emerging technologies, trends, and best practices in the AI and content creation domains.

Stay Flexible: Flexibility is key in adapting to the evolving landscape of AI. Be open to adjusting strategies, incorporating new tools, and refining processes based on the ever-changing capabilities of AI technology.

By carefully selecting skilled content editors, fostering effective collaboration, consistently reviewing and refining processes, and maintaining a curious and adaptable mindset, you can successfully leverage AI for content creation while upholding top-notch quality standards.

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