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The AI Advantage in PR

Published on March 8, 2024, 6:25 p.m.
by Anne Smith.

The idea of using technology with human intelligence to perform tasks probably sounded unimaginable 10 years ago, but now, it’s our society’s new normal and is evolving constantly. Although there is still much to learn about artificial intelligence and all of its capabilities, there is no denying that this advanced technology is here to stay.

Photo via Adobe Stock/Immersive Dimension

There are many definitions that fall under the term “artificial intelligence” (AI) as it is a broad form of technology that continues to progress rapidly. However, in its essence, AI can be described as “the theory and development of computer systems that are able to perform tasks that normally require human intelligence, such as visual perception, speech recognition, decision-making, and translation between languages.”

Although the term artificial intelligence was introduced in 1956, its popularity has grown in recent years with AI tools that have become more accessible to the general public, such as ChatGPT and OpenAI. With powerful human-like intelligence and almost no limitations to the content that AI can generate, it can seem like an intimidating tool. However, when used with balance and responsibility, its advanced technology has the ability to positively transform our society.

Balance is key
For the public relations industry, AI tools offer numerous possibilities to increase efficiency and enhance creativity. But in an industry that thrives on human creativity, finding the balance between using AI and producing personable and compelling content is key.

Photo via Jay Brandrup

As the founder and principal of Kinetic, Jay Brandrup specializes in helping organizations understand and apply the latest technologies to become more competitive. “While AI exhibits impressive capabilities in generating content and optimizing processes, there remains an acknowledgment of the irreplaceable aspects of human creativity,” Brandrup said. “Indeed, while AI can provide generalized solutions, the nuanced and emotionally resonant elements of creativity often stem from human experiences, perspectives and insights.”

Not only is maintaining a certain human and AI balance necessary, but remaining transparent to clients about the integration of AI into companies’ products is also crucial. Brandrup explained that even though client engagement levels may vary, it is important to offer tailored recommendations on how AI integrations can improve their clients’ results. This transparency encourages open communication between the company and the client.

PR powered by pixels
There are a vast number of ways that AI technology can be integrated when crafting PR campaigns. For PR professionals, it can be helpful to kick-start ideas, generate prompts or create content. Additionally, AI-powered analytics provide valuable insights that inform strategic decision-making and optimize communication strategies. AI gives PR professionals an inspiring starting point that they can branch off of to explore further.

Keelie Segars, chief executive producer at Markstein, gave interesting insight on how she uses AI in her agency: “It enables us to get started and get into the meat of the project much more quickly.” Segars explained that she uses AI technology typically at the beginning of her creative processes — for example, when writing a first draft for a press release or blog post.

Photo via Adobe Stock/WavebreakMediaMicro

However, Segars noted, they do still have an employee who analyzes and edits the AI-generated content in order to ensure it makes sense for the client. “Whatever information you get from AI, you’re going to have to spend some quality time with it,” she said. There is no question that some AI outputs aren’t 100% accurate or suitable for the client, so fact-checking the content that AI generates is imperative.

The perfect pair for PR
AI technology has the capability to completely transform the PR industry. But in a world where AI is constantly changing and evolving, in order for a company to stay competitive with others in its industry, it must adapt with these changes as well.

“Overall, the synergistic integration of AI and human creativity promises to redefine industry standards, provided companies navigate ethical challenges effectively and prioritize consumer trust and privacy,” said Brandrup.

The future of utilizing AI technology in the PR field is bright, and when used responsibly and ethically, this advanced technology enhances communication, fosters creative ideas and garners transparent relationships with clients.

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