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ChatGPT: Fear becoming a robot rather than fearing a robot will replace your role

Generative AI is evolving fast and its output is starting to rival the work of a talented human professional. Lucile Ripa, Head of Analytics and Juan Equihua, Data Science Lead at Wunderman Thompson argue that this could be transformative rather than a threat for marketing, creative and data professionals.

ChatGPT, the latest artificial intelligence (AI) from OpenAI based on natural language generation, has captured the world’s attention since it was released in November 2022. Its enables users to interact with the main AI components in a conversational way. Similar to how users interact with a virtual or voice assistant, ChatGPT can answer follow-up questions, admit its mistakes, or reject inappropriate requests.

It takes ChatGPT seconds to come up with content it would have taken a human a couple of hours to prepare. For marketing and data teams at brands and agencies, the question is how it will change our roles in the years to come. What will generative AI technologies mean for people like coders, designers, copywriters, and data professionals. Should we be inspired or alarmed by the emergence of this technology?

Will it help us to do our jobs faster and better—or will it replace many of us? The answer to the first part of the question is an unqualified yes. With its potential to automate writing, data and coding tasks, and generate creative ideas, technologies like ChatGPT could be transformational. The answer to the second part on whether we will become replaced by ChatGPT is more nuanced.

Caution for now, rapid growth into the future

The main risks are to underestimate the impact of generative AI as a long-term trend and overestimate its power in the short term. The technology is impressive today, but it also has limitations. Because ChatGPT is trained on data in the public domain (basically the Internet), there is no guarantee its answers will be accurate. There’s also no way to reference its sources yet.

Many professionals and companies will thus be cautious in how they harness generative AI, including ChatGPT, in the shorter term. But at the same time, we shouldn’t underestimate how revolutionary it is to put the power of generative AI in the hands of the public at large. For the first time, you don’t need to be a data scientist to access such technology and play with it.

This promises to unleash a tidal wave of creativity as more people experiment with the tech and as the algorithms get feedback from a larger pool of users. But there are also risks of making technology available without thinking through the consequences—as we’ve learned from the many disinformation scandals on social media. AI always needs to be paired with responsible human supervision.

ChatGPT: Not shying away from the technology

It’s worth thinking about what this all means for marketing and data people. People who lean into AI should be inspired by it rather than fearful. Those that learn to use it as a tool to improve productivity and quality will find it helpful as a smarter way to do things. Writing or coding from scratch when we can use it to speed up a first iteration makes no sense. It’s not lazy. It’s optimisation.

Our role in marketing and data is helping clients or businesses make inspired decisions, If AI helps us to finish work faster, without compromise to quality, create clever approaches or generate new ideas, why not use it with pride?  AI can only learn based on what it has seen. People can imagine and re-imagine. But only if we give ourselves the time and space to do so, and that’s where AI can help.

Let’s make the most of our wonderful human brains

We’re entering the AI era of marketing. Professionals that become experts in applying these new technologies will find it’s good for their career and business. Why would you want to waste your time and your brilliant brain on writing the first draft of a proposal or generating a PHP script for your website when tech can help? Free up your time and mind for strategy, creativity and human relationships—the areas where you can really make a difference.

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