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Blog

How AI can Support Your PR and Marketing in 2024

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Date

Jan 02, 2024

Read Time

min read

Category

Insight

Date

Jan 02, 2024

Read Time

min read

Category

Insight

Jump to:

1. Optimise manual processes 2. Fuel for planning When not to use AI

AI is not actually new, but it’s hard to remember when a topic has had such sustained hype, particularly in the marketing world. Any 2023 marketing conference with an ‘AI’ talk would be standing room only.

However, it’s getting increasingly easy to ignore LinkedIn posts and news about AI when it comes to marketing – we all love a new, shiny thing, but when it’s unwieldy and difficult to understand, we switch off.

The future of AI feels full of wonder, opportunity… but also the end of days (or the end of work, if Elon Musk is proven correct!).

Rather than pontificate about the ‘what if’, this blog aims to equip you with practical tips for the here and now. We’ll explore exactly how AI can be used as a powerful tool to enhance PR and marketing, leaving you free to focus on the areas where you can add the most value: human-centric storytelling and strategic thinking.

Here are some actionable ways to work smarter, not harder, while still maintaining that all-important human touch…

1. Optimise manual processes

If you’re completely new to AI, begin by asking yourself which tasks take the most time, are repetitive, and are given to a more junior person. These are the most obvious (and rewarding) places to start. For example:

  • Media monitoring. Remember all those manual keyword searches and endless tabs open? AI can scour the web for mentions of your brand, competitors, and industry trends, keeping you ahead of the curve and ready to react to crisis situations with lightning speed.
  • Data analysis. AI can crunch vast amounts of data from campaigns, social media, and website traffic, providing you with clear, actionable insights to optimise your activity.
  • Repurpose content. In PR, we often have to create unique and tailored content for different audiences, publications and even sectors using the same foundational information. AI can suggest fresh formats and channels to reach new audiences, saving you time and resources while maximising your existing assets. It’s also great for ideas if you need to turn a blog into a LinkedIn post, a newsletter or a press release.
  • Building media lists. Sifting through endless media lists can be time-consuming. AI can help you identify relevant journalists and influencers based on your product, area of expertise, target audience and campaign goals, saving you precious time and effort.

2. Fuel for planning

Most of us can relate to that feeling of staring at a blank piece of paper (or screen!), unsure where to start. To help with this, AI tools can create that initial input and provide a great springboard for planning and ideation. For example:

  • Create a bank of FAQs. Need a quick list of answers to common customer questions? AI can generate draft FAQs based on your existing knowledge base, keywords and content, giving you a head start and ensuring consistency in your messaging.
  • Hashtag generator. It can be very manual to trawl for relevant hashtags for social media content. AI can be a huge timesaver by analysing your content and suggesting relevant, trending hashtags to boost your post’s visibility.
  • Social media content calendar. Content planning can sometimes feel overwhelming, especially if you have multiple platforms, content pillars, awareness days and campaigns to factor in. AI can suggest content ideas, topics and themes, and general outlines for a monthly content strategy. And when you’re ready, it can also help schedule, optimise and publish them.

When not to use AI

You’ll already be aware, AI is not a magic bullet: the role of human intervention is still crucial. Especially when it comes to two key pillars of PR and marketing: creativity and storytelling.

Yes, AI can help you brainstorm and iterate, but it can’t replace unique creativity and the ability to think ‘outside the box’. Don’t rely on AI to craft your most innovative campaigns or tell your brand’s story – that’s where the human touch is irreplaceable. AI builds on what has gone before, and innovation is breaking new ground – the two aren’t compatible.

Also, as AI thrives on data, it can’t understand the nuances of human emotions or cultural context and is inherently bias. Buzzfeed learned this the hard way. Use your data-driven insights to inform your strategy, but you need to evaluate the outputs using your own understanding of your audience and context to get the best out of it.

Ultimately, AI should complement your existing skills, not replace them. It’s another tool for your toolkit. By using it tactically, you can free up your time for the high-value tasks that require your human touch and expertise. Whether you’re excited or nervous about the onset of AI, it’s ploughing ahead at pace, so don’t be afraid to jump in and start testing now!

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