ChatGPT: how creative freelancers can make the app work for them

4 min
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By now you’ve probably heard about ChatGPT -- OpenAI’s new chatbot.

Its 175 billion parameters and uncanny ability to produce human-like text in a huge range of styles, translate text into almost any language, and respond accurately to prompts in under a minute has both amazed and shocked people worldwide.

Amazement, shock -- and worry

Chat GPT is also asking a few searching questions of industries; their established practices, and their practitioners.

In fact, many freelancers, particularly copywriters and bloggers, are even worried that ChatGPT could impact their ability to find work.

After all, if this tool can write an informative blog post, compose a convincing presentation, or even code a fully functional website, in the comparative blink of an eye, what can us mere mortals bring to the table?!

Let me start by making a bold prediction -- it’s going to be fine, writes Emilie Heaney, founder of Start Up Marketeer.

ChatGPT isn’t going to eat your lunch…

Copywriters -- don’t be alarmed. Humans still have the edge over artificial intelligence when it comes to writing with flair and originality. Only us types with a soul can truly understand what makes other humans tick and how to create an instant bond with a target audience!

ChatGPT can get you some of the way.

But ultimately, a piece of writing will always need your personal touch to really shine.

Recap on why humans have the edge

You, the human, have the skills to:

  • Tailor your article’s language and tone to a very specific target audience.
  • Write original ideas and arguments rather than just reconstituting old existing ones already online somewhere else, helping to position your client as a ‘thought-leader’ in their field.
  • Make your article web search-friendly and readable.
  • Add stories and anecdotes to help the article resonate with your audience.
  • Add that personal touch; depth, empathy or edge – in other words 'human magic' and interpretation -- that ensures your article stands out and feels authentic.
  • ,

How ChatGPT can help make your work/life easier

A good copywriter will always have the edge over a computer, but there are many ways you can incorporate ChatGPT into your workflow to help you write better content.

And if you’re not a copywriter, ChatGPT can be a really useful tool for sketching out comms like emails, pitches like client proposals, and content like blogs in record time.

Here’s how the "highly advanced language model" can work for you.

1. Use ChatGPT to generate ideas

ChatGPT is a great starting point to help you put pen to paper -- or fingers to keyboard! Sometimes the most daunting part of writing is knowing where to start.

Well, ChatGPT can give you a helping hand by providing the ‘bare bones’ of whatever you are trying to write. Just input a few jumping-off points with question marks at the end, and see it respond!

Then, you can tailor the content to your own needs so that it represents you and what you’re trying to say to the world.

As sub-editors know very well, it’s usually easier to edit someone else's work or writing than start from scratch or have to come up with your own words!

2. Let ChatGPT do some research for you (but always fact-check)

If you’re writing a factual document, try using ChatGPT to collate information for you.

The program is effective at pulling together basic information on a topic, although be aware, the tool has a knowledge cut-off of 2021.

Further beware of taking the information at face value.

Everything ChatGPT produces is collated from other online sources, meaning it stands to be influenced by bias, 'fake news' and incorrect information.

So, use it to gather info for you, but be vigilant about fact-checking any material before publishing it under your name.

If you’re writing web content, you also run the risk of creating duplicate content which will negatively impact your SEO ranking.

Make sure to tailor everything ChatGPT writes to ‘make it your own.’ It will not only read better, but the content will also perform better on search engines too.

3. Appreciate Chat GPT’s limitations

ChatGPT can be a useful writing aid but in its current form, it won’t replace the very human ability to communicate, tell a story, imagine the impossible, and create something truly magical. The great wordsmiths of our time can rest easy!

It’s early days and ChatGPT is still developing. In fact, some responses that were being churned out last week aren’t displaying right now, implying that the tool’s "Artificial Intelligence Trainers” are actively trying to reduce its limitations as you read this!

But teething problems will likely continue for some time. So my advice is this -- by all means take advantage of Chat GPT but don’t become dependent on it!

Final thought...

Use ChatGPT as a springboard to generate interesting ideas and work out a structure, but beware -- computers make mistakes too!

Always check the content, tweak it to make sure it’s your own words, and keep in mind that there might be hidden biases and inaccuracies inside. In that sense, maybe’s ChatGPT is more like us humans than any of us would care to admit!

The author, Emilie Heaney, is a freelance digital marketing consultant and founder of Start Up Marketeer. Emilie specialises in helping freelancers, start-up businesses and SMEs to establish and grow their business through effective digital marketing.

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