This AI research report will tell you if people like content generated with artificial intelligence. Our AI marketing report also answers these burning questions: What is artificial intelligence? How does AI work? Is AI good or bad? Is trusting artificial intelligence a good idea? Read the report in the FlippingBook format!
AI in content marketing
MARKETING RESEARCH REPORT
AI has been one of the most impactful developments in the marketing industry, and in many others, in the past few years. Not only that, it’s also become a rising point of concern. Will AI replace marketers, designers, and other specialists? Are we all doomed? With tools like ChatGPT and Midjourney seemingly in their prime, we have every reason to worry. Yet the fact is, AI simply means change , which can be scary. But change is the constant drive of marketing, and the force behind good content.
In 2023, marketers should focus on how to incorporate that big change into their processes rather than stress about AI taking their jobs. The AI tools of today require human guidance to perform at their best , and even then they lack creativity and authenticity that marketers can bring into their content. So no, we’re not all doomed. We have the opportunity to grow and change, and that’s a beautiful thing.
Lada Bretel Head of Content FlippingBook
Table of Contents C
01 02 03 04 05
Say ‘Aye’ to AI
Objectives and Methodology
ChatGPT vs Content Marketers
06 07 08 09
Midjourney vs Designers
The Prospects of AI in Content Marketing
Expert Insights on the Ethics of Using AI-Generated Content
Actionable Tips on How to Use AI in Marketing
Say ‘Aye’ to AI
Everyone wants to stay relevant in their industry, and with AI’s reach spreading far and wide, lots of companies are pressured to jump on the trendy train. It’s hard to say who does this consciously and who simply gives in to the hype. But one thing is clear: whether you want to create content, write code, or automate your processes, as a marketer in 2023 you can no longer ignore the growing importance of AI software for achieving some of your goals.
And when it comes to your content goals, there’s probably the best variety of AI tools you can choose from. Videos, texts, images, surveys – most content can be AI-generated these days.
Simply put, artificial intelligence used in content marketing is a tool for generating content using immense textual databases. The data contains texts previously written by humans, so AI can’t actually create anything new. What is AI in content marketing?
At FlippingBook, we carry content at the heart of everything we do. Being a company that helps people create interactive ebooks, we have to know where the art of content creation is really going. So naturally, we’re faced with a question: is AI the future of content? And how do people feel about AI- generated images and texts in the present? This report will answer these and other questions about the usage of AI in content marketing. We surveyed over 650 professionals to see which content they prefer – texts and images made by AI or by people. The twist? The surveyees weren’t aware AI was involved at all. The unexpected results may just explain whether AI is the enemy of content creators or a new aid in the chase for quality content.
Texts and images created by our team were judged against the content delivered by ChatGPT and Midjourney. What we’ve learned is that human content is definitely not obsolete, and human effort is required for AI to deliver quality texts and images.
of respondents prefer AI-generated texts
6 times more
iterations can sometimes be required for AI to deliver content at the expected level
of respondents prefer AI-generated images
iterations can be required to produce quality content with Midjourney than with ChatGPT 7 more
Objective and Methodology
Before diving into our findings, we’d like to explain the why and how of our AI research. For a while, we’ve been asking ourselves the same question: is AI good or bad? You can dig up different answers online, but we wanted to discover the truth ourselves. Here’s what we did:
01 02 03
We decided to learn which content people prefer: human- or AI-generated. We gave the same prompts to our content team and to ChatGPT and Midjourney. After a few iterations, we received 5 sets of content based on three text prompts and two image prompts.
We asked 650 respondents to vote for their favorite content in each of the 5 sets. The respondents didn’t know that half of the content was produced by artificial intelligence. We’re now bringing you the results.
We’d like to thank all those who contributed their answers to our survey. The audience was quite varied. 75% of the respondents were aged 30-44, although we surveyed people of different ages (from 25 to 50). Most of the respondents came from the US, but we also received answers from different countries across Europe and Australasia. We surveyed people of different genders. The surveyees came from a variety of industries and backgrounds.
ChatGPT vs Content Marketers: What Do People Prefer?
The textual part of our survey included three questions, each with two texts to choose from. One was written by a content marketer on our team, and the other by artificial intelligence. The respondents didn’t know that AI was involved, because we didn’t want that knowledge to influence their decision making.
How does AI work? It pulls up information from its
database to compile a text you request. However, you have to understand you’re requesting something from a machine. Hence, you need to be very direct. Make sure to be specific about the style you want, and the number of sentences you expect to see in the result.
Both our marketers and ChatGPT received the same instructions for creating content. We had to be very specific in our instructions for the AI to deliver what we wanted.
Let’s take a look at the tasks and texts in question
Task # 1
Provide a description of a new app that helps landlords find the perfect match among multiple tenants. Explain the value of such an app. No more than 5 sentences. Iterations: Both the content marketer and ChatGPT wrote the final text on the first attempt.
Iterations Human 01 | ChatGPT 01
Your perfect tenant a swipe away! Rent out your home to a person who will love it like their own. Our App helps thousands of landlords and tenants across the country connect on a personal level and ensures the apartment is a perfect match.
Powered by an AI-based algorithm, the App gives you the list of potential tenants who will make the most of the home and the neighborhood – no more hours spent reviewing generic emails that tell you nothing about the person behind them. 42 % (all ages & genders)
Introducing Tenant Matchmaker, a revolutionary app designed to assist landlords in finding the ideal tenant from a pool of applicants. The app utilizes advanced algorithms and comprehensive tenant profiles to analyze preferences, rental history, and background checks, ensuring a seamless matching process. By streamlining tenant selection, landlords can save valuable time and resources while mitigating the risk of selecting incompatible tenants. Tenant Matchmaker’s efficient and data-driven approach maximizes rental property occupancy rates, reduces turnover, and ultimately boosts landlords’ profitability and peace of mind.
58 % (all ages & genders)
In this case, respondents across all age and gender groups preferred an AI-generated text to the one written by a content marketer. We asked ourselves: why? ChatGPT came up with a name for the app, which probably made the text seem more relatable. Additionally, the AI used a lot of heavy terminology and listed a bunch of functionality of the imaginary app in our assignment – that could trigger people to believe that a description like that could answer all of their questions. On the other hand, the human text is centered around the value of the app for other humans rather than its various supposed functions, so we can clearly see why 42% of respondents inclined toward that option.
Task # 2
Write a short elevator pitch about Harry Potter. Iterations: Both ChatGPT and our content marketer needed 2 attempts to write the final text. Each of them initially provided a text that seemed a bit big for an elevator pitch.
Iterations Human 02 | ChatGPT 02
Harry Potter is a story about an orphaned 11-year-old boy, who discovers he’s a wizard and gets invited to a secret school, where he learns magic and fights a powerful evil wizard seeking to conquer the world. 49 % (all ages)
ChatGPT result: Enter a world of magic and adventure with Harry Potter, as he discovers his destiny, battles dark forces, and forms unbreakable friendships at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.
An almost even split here, which is explained by the clear difference in the styles of the suggested texts. The respondents were asked to choose a sentence that would make them more interested in the book, and both options seemed convincing enough. Interestingly, 57% of male surveyees preferred the human result, but only 40% of females were disposed toward it. 51 % (all ages)
Task # 3
Write a 3 sentence ad about a new feature in a survey tool: Image Questions. Iterations: This time the human writer created the content on the first try, but it took ChatGPT two attempts to get it right. Iterations Human 01 | ChatGPT 02
Are people dropping out of your surveys mid-way? Get our latest feature, Image Questions, to see deeper engagement and higher response rates. Images are simply much more click-worthy than plain text – give it a go today!
40 % (all ages & genders)
Level up your surveys with our latest feature: Image Questions! Now you can effortlessly integrate eye-catching visuals into your surveys, making feedback more engaging than ever. Capture insights at a glance and unlock a world of possibilities with Image Questions, revolutionizing the way you collect valuable data.
60 % (all ages & genders)
60% of respondents preferred the ad written by AI. This isn’t surprising, if you look closely enough at it. The text is an amalgam of powerful marketing content summoned from ChatGPT’s extensive knowledge base – which is what any AI-generated text essentially is. If we consider that an average person is likely to prefer an average text, AI has a far higher chance of succeeding in writing said text. Still, 40% of surveyees gave preference to the ad written by a content marketer in their personal style. All is not lost – marketers have a strong place to be in this ever- changing AI-powered world.
Midjourney vs Designers: What Do People Prefer?
The graphic part of the survey came with two questions, each with two images to choose from. Initially, we intended to have three image questions in our survey, but after 12 iterations Midjourney couldn’t produce an image at the required level, so we thought two images should be enough. Both our designers and Midjourney received the same instructions for creating content. We had to be very specific in our instructions for the AI to deliver what we wanted.
As opposed to our experiment with ChatGPT, getting AI-generated images turned out to be much more difficult. The tasks had to be more detailed from the start, and Midjourney needed additional clarifications and tags to be able to deliver the images in the style we requested. Considering multiple iterations and task adjustments, getting the right image from Midjourney was a lot harder than getting the right text from ChatGPT.
Let’s see what the tasks were, and what images we got
Task # 1
Create an image for an email newsletter for an app that helps collect leads and track lead engagement. The image should depict a new feature in the product: new customizable sign up form to collect leads. Unrealistic. 2D only. Clear, simple design. Iterations: Our designer got it right on the second attempt. It took Midjourney 9 iterations to deliver the final image.
Iterations Human 02 | Midjourney 09
48 % (all ages & genders)
52 % (all ages & genders)
Despite 52% of respondents considering the AI-generated image the best, we think that the human designer actually did a better job. Why? Because they followed the task closely, while Midjourney provided us with an image consisting of different icons. Sure, it’s bright and engaging, but it doesn’t really convey the intended message. To be fair, the respondents weren’t aware of the assignment – we only asked for their preference. Midjourney’s style clearly wins people’s hearts. And with the AI’s speed of producing images, it can be a worthy tool for content creation marketing.
How does Midjourney generate images? Following your instructions, it generates four images at a time, so you can either select one or request to hone an image for another batch of four pics.
Task # 2
Create an illustration for a children’s book about a magical world. Draw a meadow or a forest. Draw two types of flora. Draw a rabbit and a unicorn. Only two animals. 2D, flat, unrealistic. Simple forms, simple design. Unrealistic shapes. Low contrast colors. Close-up drawing. Iterations: After 6 iterations provided by Midjourney, we gave up and accepted the result you see. No matter what we did, the AI wouldn’t create an appropriate image with both a rabbit and a unicorn. The images either came with just one animal, or one of the creatures would have extra legs, ears, and whatnot. The designer produced the final image on the second try.
Iterations Human 02 | Midjourney 06
62 % (all ages & genders)
38 % (all ages & genders)
Take a closer look
The AI-generated image was considered a better fit for a children’s book – 62% of surveyees preferred it to the illustration created by one of our designers. And we can see why: Midjourney’s image is a lot more traditional, and it would probably appeal to a lot of children with those adorable bunnies and flowers. Our designer went for a more innovative design that would probably serve better in an online project for kids than in a book. And yet, 38% of respondents found it to their liking – and we’ll take that.
The Prospects of AI in Content Marketing
The influence of AI is undoubtedly growing in our daily and work lives. However, with 43% of respondents preferring human-generated content, it’s safe to say that artificial intelligence is far from being the human replacement everyone fears that it is. AI can become an additional tool in the arsenal of marketers, though. What we’ve learned is that people – a staggering 57% – love content created by artificial intelligence , both texts and images. So marketers can save time and resources by employing AI to perform their daily tasks. In fact, AI could become a lifesaver for small businesses, especially if they’re only working on establishing their brand. Instead of hiring a team of writers and designers or outsourcing the job, they can get a subscription to an AI tool and get instant content for their needs – content at least 50% of their audience would like.
You can pay just $20–24 a month to generate texts and images with AI.
Bigger companies can rely on artificial intelligence for inspiration and small tasks , or perhaps for internal content. This way, you get the job done but you don’t overuse tools that, in their essence, can’t create original content. Trusting artificial intelligence with content marketing is something you can do, as long as you understand how AI works and any risks it may bring along, including the authenticity of content and the ethical side of using it.
Originality of the content created with AI is an obvious concern for marketers. Is it ethical to use images and texts based on other people’s content? Next to no rules regulate AI databases and what content can be taken from the web to teach it. So we turned to our peers for their expert insights on the matter. The Ethics of Using AI-Generated Content “ Overall, using AI to streamline job processes is a positive thing. AI tools can benefit creative staff like content writers, video editors, producers, community managers, and content creators to increase their productivity while focusing more on the creative process. I think the discussion of AI’s ethical use will remain active for some time; however, teams in the tech industry need to set guidelines and standards regarding copyright and authorship. ”
Alina Midori Hernandez, Content Writer at Envato ◌́
“ Brands can benefit from using AI in a host of ways, including creating outlines for written content, generating images for brand assets, and personalized targeting using machine learning-powered marketing. However, the jury is out on the ethical use of using AI to create content. Some organizations, from media organizations to education institutions, are taking a hardline approach and banning its use, whereas others are wholeheartedly embracing it. ”
Matthew Miller, Principal AI Analyst at G2
Considering that AI isn’t trained to create unique content, we wouldn’t recommend using artificial intelligence for the entirety of your marketing tasks. But you can divide and conquer: Actionable Tips on How to Use AI in Marketing
• Discover the AI tools that work best for your content needs, but tread with care. Less than 60% of your audience will like AI-generated content , so it has to be unique enough to appeal to the other 40%. • Consider the ethical aspect of employing AI: is your company open to using images and texts that aren’t 100% original and are based on content created by someone else? If yes, then make sure that the content still reflects your style – hire a skilled editor or content marketer to curate and perfect the content AI generates.
• Don’t be afraid of trusting artificial intelligence – it’s not going to replace you. AI is still in its infancy in 2023, so it won’t take people’s jobs in the near future, and we can reap its benefits while learning how to stay relevant in the AI-powered world. • Continue creating original content, targeted at your audience. Our research shows that at least 40% of people prefer content created by humans . No one knows your audience and their needs better than you, so AI can hardly outperform you there.
Don’t fear the change that AI brings – embrace it and choose the path of content creation that works best for you.
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