Don’t be Afraid of Generative AI

First, a word from this week’s sponsor, Reletter.

Newsletter readership is growing fast. Unlock a treasure trove of opportunities to get featured and grow your brand with Reletter. Search for Substack and LinkedIn newsletters by topic and view traffic estimates, engagement scores, contacts and lots more.

Try it for free ($49/mo early bird pricing)

I haven’t looked at the Gartner hype cycle recently, but if I did, I bet Generative AI is at the peak of inflated expectations. Everyone is buzzing about AI these days. You can’t go three minutes without someone mentioning it.

Most of the time, when we’re talking about Generative AI, we’re talking about ChatGPT for text, and one of the image generators, like MidJourney.

On a recent episode of the Hashtags podcastNicole Greene broke down the reasons why we don’t have to be afraid of Generative AI.

As an experiment, I tried to use AI as much as possible to create this issue.

  • I used to transcribe this podcast and provide an outline
  • I then took that outline and asked ChatGPT to organize it so it fit the Why/How/What storytelling framework
  • After that, I got started on Midjourney to create some AI-looking images
  • Then I cleaned up the copy and designed it

The style I wanted to mimic was that of Warlock from Marvel’s The New Mutants. Unfortunately, Warlock’s co-creator, Bill Sienkiewicz, is very much in the anti-AI camp.

I get it. AI can diminish the value of work that creative people do. I’d be able to produce this newsletter much faster if I just let bots create it. But I believe we need humanity in the content we consume.

There will flood of low-effort, low-value content flowing out of unremarkable marketing teams over the next six to twelve months. This initial phase will end, and then teams will figure out how to use AI as a tool, rather than the whole creation process.

The way I see it, it’s no different than when Photoshop or other design software was introduced. Everyone used to do it one way. We kicked and screamed when an “easy” way appeared. And then we adapted.

I started studying graphic design in 1995 and we set type by hand. But then we moved on to the computers. I often tell people that knowing software doesn’t make someone a designer. That is a different skill set. People will learn how to use Generative AI as a tool. And there will always be a place for human-generated content.

If I had waited a little longer, I would have recapped a recent episode of This Old Marketing where Robert Rose was joined by guest Paul Roetzer and they went deeper into how AI will impact marketing. But I already had this issue completed (sorry guys). I recommend the episode.

Where do you think we’re going with AI? Leave a comment below.

Thanks for skimming,


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *