By: Matthew McGee
Merriam-Webster defines artificial intelligence (“AI”) as, “a branch of computer science dealing with the simulation of intelligent behavior in computers,” or, “the capability of a machine to imitate intelligent human behavior.” Since the 1950s, various computer scientists have developed theories to research, develop, and implement artificial intelligence for the benefit of society, and have been pressed with deep philosophical and ethical questions along the way.
More recently, in late 2021, Forbes predicted a number of AI trends to be expected in 2022. Among these trends were AI and cybersecurity, meaning it could be employed to both defend against and investigate potential cyber threats, and AI and autonomous vehicles, meaning AI could help support transportation infrastructure operating within itself, absent human intervention. Along with these breakthroughs, Forbes correctly predicted the emergence of, “[b]igger and better language modeling.” In particular, they foresaw OpenAI’s breakthrough with their GPT language model, eventually to be known as ChatGPT.
ChatGPT’s creator, OpenAI, is self-described as an, “AI research and deployment company,” whose mission is, “to ensure that artificial general intelligence benefits all humanity.” In pursuit of this noble and sweeping goal, they released their newest language model, ChatGPT during late 2022. According to their site, ChatGPT is an online language model which, “interacts in a conversational way,” and can, “answer follow-up questions, admit its mistakes, challenge incorrect premises, and reject inappropriate requests.”
Practically, ChatGPT is an online platform where individuals can provide prompts which are returned in common, conversational language consistent with the level of formality prompted by the user. For example, as demonstrated on their website, the user prompted the model to write a short note introducing themselves to their neighbor. After returning a casual, conversational response, the user asked for more formal language, which the model successfully returned. Other examples on ChatGPT’s website include prompts for the language model to debug code, describe a mathematic theorem, write a limerick about said theorem, then summarize the conversation, and lastly describe how to protect a home against potential burglary. Ultimately, the opportunities illustrated by these four limited examples only scratch the surface of potential applications for ChatGPT. The remainder of this article will describe such potential uses in the fields of general business and marketing.
One of ChatGPT’s primary capabilities is automating customer facing functionality of businesses by providing language at varying levels of formality based on the user’s prompt. This versatility could be a valuable resource for businesses looking to bolster certain aspects of their literature without devoting time and resources to draft and edit. Among these potential uses could be product descriptions, user instructions, user-interface code, and more. The benefit of ChatGPT’s wide versatility is that an employee tasked with drafting language for any part of their role could first visit ChatGPT and prompt it with their particular task. In doing so, they may take ChatGPT’s generated response, or simply use such response as inspiration for their own product. Ultimately, it can help streamline the development of a robust business by providing actual language or simply inspiration.
In addition, the public is beginning to consider ways in which ChatGPT’s capabilities can be leveraged to provide services. An article by Medium suggests five ways in which ChatGPT can do so: virtual customer service agent, virtual personal assistant, virtual tutor, virtual event planner, and virtual travel agent. Less that ChatGPT would likely ease any such professional’s effort in doing the listed roles, the article is illustrative of how individuals can leverage the AI capabilities of ChatGPT’s language model to generate quick, smart, and easy to understand response that would otherwise require hours of devoted research and drafting. Ultimately, the human touch needed to connect and communicate will likely not be usurped for the near future, but ChatGPT’s potential to support individuals in both basic and complex research and communication will be an overall benefit.
ChatGPT could also be a valuable resource for Marketing professionals seeking to develop a more robust outward facing image of their business. In particular, it can be used to generate content about a product, consumer segment, or general product offering of a business. For example, if a consumer product business offering smartphone accessories prompted ChatGPT to create language describing the ease, convenience, and accessibility of its products, ChatGPT could in seconds create content for their website that could be used illustrate utility. Instead of spending time drafting this language, ChatGPT’s language model would instead be capable of quickly and efficiently providing concise and conversational language for businesses.
Beyond specific products, ChatGPT could help business generate Marketing bulletins and other important outward facing language for a small business. By inputting their mission, values, and product or service offering, ChatGPT could successfully generate language that can be used on a website to illustrate their mission, values, and service offerings. Also, because ChatGPT can, “answer follow-up question,” a business can refine their unique answer with criticism or suggestions until they reach their desired result. The potential efficiency offered by ChatGPT to help small, mid-sized, and large business develop their Marketing, and general outward facing strategy could be incredibly valuable in the near future.
ChatGPT, functionally, offers individuals a virtual personal assistant with the ability to not only answer basic questions, but to communicate complex and deep responses. This resource has been heralded as revolutionary in the AI space. The fact that it is free to use also creates new accessibility opportunities not before enjoyed by regular individuals. Whether looking to develop a business, ask a quick question, or simply gain inspiration over how to introduce yourself to a neighbor or co-worker, ChatGPT’s unprecedentedly versatile, but still wonderfully simple platform is a new and revolutionary resource that will likely change how individuals view AI going forward. While there still is much to do in the realm of wide adoption of AI use by those outside of the computer science world, ChatGPT gives those on the fringes access to one of its greatest accomplishments, completely for free.