Fear of having jobs taken by robots (or immigrants, or people of color if we’re being honest) is a fear as old as jobs themselves.
A quick search for the root of this fear leads to results like this wikipedia entry for Technophobia which can trace it’s roots all the way back to a group of weavers destroying machines in 1675.
The fear of robots specifically goes at least “The Brazen Android” a story published in The Atlantic all the way back in 1891.
Whether it’s weavers, or Ford assembly line workers or now sportswriters the fear of robots taking our jobs is nothing new.
For the most part the fear of robots was limited to more manual tasks like assembling Ford F150s.
Companies like Braincorp have created automatic floor sweepers, while the Roomba robot vacuum cleaner has been cleaning homes with questionable effectiveness for over a decade.
Robotic Process Automation or RPA use machine learning to complete tedious paperwork tasks such as compiling documents for signatures or checking for compliance or legal privilege.
But for the most part those who created things (like content) believed that we would be safe from the robot job apocalypse.
Only it appears we were wrong.
First the content creating robots started by writing ads. If you’ve worked in online marketing over the last few years you’ve no doubt discovered programmatic Pay per click (PPC).
Programmatic PPC is an artificially intelligent system that allows you to automatically buy, place and optimize display advertising.
Or in other words the robot buys, places and optimizes the ad for you.
There goes a whole industry of PPC consultants.
In fact it’s been estimated that in 5 years all PPC ads will run, and optimize automatically after the initial setup without any human interface necessary at all.
Which is why Google is actively calling everyone who advertises with them to offer them help with their programmatic system.
I know, I’ve been on 3 of those calls and grilled them for information about their robots which I’ll share in an upcoming article.
Now content creators, bloggers, and video makers have another type of AI to content with as content creating algorithms have begun to slowly trickle onto the market.
The technology being used is
Natural language generation (NLG) similar to Natural language processing (NLP) this is the task of generating natural language from machine representation systems.
Intelligent narratives sometimes also called “data driven narratives” which are stories created from the collected data personalized for the audience.
Automated storytelling technology which is responsible for the first AI created screenplay Sunspring
And this technology is ALREADY being used.
3 companies already using A.I to create content:
Quill. The most well known NLG software is Quill which was created by the Narrative Science company. Quill started as an experiment at Northwestern and currently produces over 1 million words a day as it creates reports, news stories and headlines for companies such as Groupon, and T.Row Price.
The Washington Post. It’s no surprise that a paper owned by the World’s Richest Man Jeff Bezos would be on the frontlines of AI created content. The Washington Post has an in house AI content creation system called “Heligraf” which wrote over 850 stories in 2017 alone. Heliograf also composes social media posts, news updates and alerts. Notable events covered by Heliograf include the Rio olympics and local political races in the DMV area.
The Associated Press. While many people associate the AP with the old world journalism of newsrooms, black coffee and unfiltered cigarettes, they are actually one of the most advanced companies when it comes to content creating AI. The AP uses Automated Insights to take care of it’s oft neglected by humans corporate earnings reports beat. But what really separates the AP from the rest of the pack when it comes to intelligent content creation is with Wordsmith “The World’s First Public Natural Language Generation Platform. Let’s explain because that is a mouthful. Wordsmith works with you to create a story. First you set up rules, a template and and the required datapoints. From there Wordsmith does the rest creating the story. Wordsmith generates over 1.5 Billion Pieces of Content A Year or about half as much as I do. Companies that use Wordsmith include Microsoft and Allstate.
If you like me make your living creating content those last few paragraphs sent a cold shiver down your spine.
But there’s still reason for optimism if you are a content creator!
Why Content Creators shouldn’t panic:
Emotional Depth. If you look at the reviews for Sunspring the AI created screenplay you’ll see a lot of words like quirky and interesting. That’s because it’s still very difficult for AI to recognize the role that emotions play in making content interesting! Think of a show like “Parenthood” which is basically emotional porn. They crank the 70s music, a mother and son have a universally emotional moment and we all cry. AI has a LONG way to go until it is capable of writing shows like “Parenthood” or it’s evolutionary successor “This is us.”
Context. In this Post I talk about how the biggest challenge for AI when it comes to language is context. Identifying things like sarcasm, and irony are still difficult for machines to do and are a BIG part of creating content that connects with your audience. Until computer programs can understand something as complicated as the “Aristocrats” joke comedians and other content creators will still be safe
3. Creativity. Last but certainly not least is creativity. Movies like Memento, or Pulp Fiction which bent the way narratives are used can’t be created by AI. AT least not yet. There will always be something to be said for the genius of human creativity that cannot be replicated.
I think about AI with regards to content creation like the famous quote about 500 monkeys at typewriters writing the best novel of all time. Or more accurately like this simpsons clips
While content creation robots are coming, all they are going to do is take the menial content creation jobs. They won’t be writing the World’s best novel or even the most popular blog posts.
If you’re a content creator who just churns out crap, then yes your time is probably coming to an end because the robots can churn out crap faster and cheaper.
But there has always been a market for good writing, entertaining videos and engaging speeches and I think there always will be.
I had a nice weekend of actually not working for the first time in a long time.
Which means that as I try to ease back in to the creative process of the week which will include creating
3 articles for this blog (optimistic I know)
5-6 articles for various clients
A report on marketing Artificial Intelligence services
I am reminded that the creative process is a workmanlike one. As you are probably already aware I am not a huge fan of inspirational quotes but I do find the following 10 quotes on the creative process to be particularly useful and enlightening so here we go
All quotes are from Good Reads and have not been fact checked for accuracy.
10 Great Quotes On The Creative Process For A Monday!
“Nothing is original. Steal from anywhere that resonates with inspiration or fuels your imagination. Devour old films, new films, music, books, paintings, photographs, poems, dreams, random conversations, architecture, bridges, street signs, trees, clouds, bodies of water, light and shadows. Select only things to steal from that speak directly to your soul. If you do this, your work (and theft) will be authentic. Authenticity is invaluable; originality is non-existent. And don’t bother concealing your thievery – celebrate it if you feel like it. In any case, always remember what Jean-Luc Godard said: “It’s not where you take things from – it’s where you take them to.”
[MovieMaker Magazine #53 – Winter, January 22, 2004 ]”
“First forget inspiration. Habit is more dependable. Habit will sustain you whether you’re inspired or not. Habit will help you finish and polish your stories. Inspiration won’t. Habit is persistence in practice.”
“A story is not like a road to follow … it’s more like a house. You go inside and stay there for a while, wandering back and forth and settling where you like and discovering how the room and corridors relate to each other, how the world outside is altered by being viewed from these windows. And you, the visitor, the reader, are altered as well by being in this enclosed space, whether it is ample and easy or full of crooked turns, or sparsely or opulently furnished. You can go back again and again, and the house, the story, always contains more than you saw the last time. It also has a sturdy sense of itself of being built out of its own necessity, not just to shelter or beguile you.”
“Creativity is paradoxical. To create, a person must have knowledge but forget the knowledge, must see unexpected connections in things but not have a mental disorder, must work hard but spend time doing nothing as information incubates, must create many ideas yet most of them are useless, must look at the same thing as everyone else, yet see something different, must desire success but embrace failure, must be persistent but not stubborn, and must listen to experts but know how to disregard them.”
[Twelve Things You Were Not Taught in School About Creative Thinking (The Creativity Post, December 6, 2011)]”
“Don’t dash off a six-thousand-word story before breakfast. Don’t write too much. Concentrate your sweat on one story, rather than dissipate it over a dozen. Don’t loaf and invite inspiration; light out after it with a club, and if you don’t get it you will none the less get something that looks remarkably like it. Set yourself a “stint,” [London wrote 1,000 words nearly every day of his adult life] and see that you do that “stint” each day; you will have more words to your credit at the end of the year.
Study the tricks of the writers who have arrived. They have mastered the tools with which you are cutting your fingers. They are doing things, and their work bears the internal evidence of how it is done. Don’t wait for some good Samaritan to tell you, but dig it out for yourself.
See that your pores are open and your digestion is good. That is, I am confident, the most important rule of all.
Keep a notebook. Travel with it, eat with it, sleep with it. Slap into it every stray thought that flutters up into your brain. Cheap paper is less perishable than gray matter, and lead pencil markings endure longer than memory.
And work. Spell it in capital letters. WORK. WORK all the time. Find out about this earth, this universe; this force and matter, and the spirit that glimmers up through force and matter from the maggot to Godhead. And by all this I mean WORK for a philosophy of life. It does not hurt how wrong your philosophy of life may be, so long as you have one and have it well.
The three great things are: GOOD HEALTH; WORK; and a PHILOSOPHY OF LIFE. I may add, nay, must add, a fourth—SINCERITY. Without this, the other three are without avail; with it you may cleave to greatness and sit among the giants.”
[Getting Into Print (The Editor magazine, March 1903)]”
Email subscribers are almost 4 X more likely to share your content. People who join your email list are more likely to be fans of your work or company and are thus more likely to share. As Dan Kennedy once said if you can assemble a group of 1,000 rabid fans, they will support you and your business for life.
As you can see email should be a focal part of your content marketing strategy, no matter what business you are in.
If you’re using video in your cosmetic surgery marketing, I want you to ask yourself a question.
Do the videos you use actually get more cosmetic surgery patients for your practice?
See while video is all the rage in cosmetic surgery marketing, 90% of the videos created don’t actually get more patients in your door.
On the other hand, If the thought of using video to get more cosmetic surgery clients conjures up images of sleazy East Coast Doctors posting live surgeries on Snapchat, hopefully this article will inspire you to consider using video in marketing your practice as it can be an effective technique without sacrificing your reputation.
Google Rewards Video
I don’t want to bore you with the details but since Google introduced “Universal search” which produces a mix of information and video in 2007, almost every major update whether it’s Penguin in 2015 or Hummingbird in 2013 have led to video results being rewarded with high search rankings.
So, how does a cosmetic surgery practice use video in a way that actually generates patients and doesn’t make you look unprofessional?
I’m glad you asked, there are 3 ways to get more patients with video:
Send Demonstration Videos To Your Email List. One of the easiest ways to use video that will actually be send trackable patients through the door is demonstration videos which you can host on Youtube for free. In a demonstration video you can show potential patients how to correctly use products or explain and services and procedures in more detail. Using your Email management system you can see who opened the email and who clicked on the video link and follow up with those clients later on if they don’t contact you for an appointment.
Go Live. One of the best ways to use video to get patients is to do Live Q and As on either Facebook Live or Google Hangouts. These Q and As will allow potential patients who either didn’t have the time or were too embarrassed to set up an in office consultation ask their questions without worry. You can even ask the potential patient to call you during the live Q and A and start to set up an appointment in real time as many of my clients have done.
Offer Skype, or Google Hangout Consults. The last way is where I believe the future of medicine is headed with companies like Plushcare already providing medical consults for non threatening conditions over an App. Ultimately I believe that is how most medical consults will take place and any steps you can take to be an “early adopter” of this kind of technology will allow you to get more patients in the door. You may even be able to charge between $20-60 for the consultation in addition to booking more procedures.
Most Cosmetic surgery practices are either not creating video content or are creating the wrong kind of content for social media sites that don’t have buyers like Snapchat where the average age is between 13-24 not exactly prime cosmetic surgery prospects.
Instead you want to use video in the 3 ways I listed above to actually get more cosmetic surgery patients.
I want to hear from you, what other ways have you tried to use video and how has it worked or not worked?