AI in PR

Andrew Bruce Smith, AI in PR

It is only February and it almost feels like we can already call it – 2023 will be the year of AI.

It has been impossible not to get caught up in the ChatGPT tsunami that has made headlines, swamped social media feeds and seemingly replaced the weather as the most popular piece of small talk before meetings.

Not to add to the deluge, but rather to cut through the hype and the noise, in this episode I speak to UK based digital and data PR expert Andrew Bruce Smith.

Andrew is Chair of the UK’s Chartered Institute of Public Relations AI in PR Panel and in this episode he tells us that in the past two months there’s been over a quarter of a million media articles on ChatGPT globally and over five million social media impressions. It certainly has certainly enjoyed a charmed PR run.

AI has been the next big thing for the last decade. And on November 30 last year that actually came true, literally overnight, with the launch of ChatGPT. PR and comms professionals have been obsessed by how ChatGPT can write but Andrew explains the use cases go far beyond content – it can be a media trainer, plan crisis comms scenarios or be our research assistant.

And while it has captured the headlines and made everyone pay attention, Andrew is quick to point out that ChatGPT is just one of a universe of AI tools that have the potential to transform the role of PR and communications. He recommends practitioners check out – a free online searchable database of AI tools to help you explore the many different AI tools that may be of use in your role.

Andrew makes a point that seems to have been missed in the noise surrounding ChatGPT. If we truly believe PR is not just about communication, that is, not just what organisations say, but more importantly what organisations do, then the role of the PR professional in this AI world is two-fold: we need to understand the opportunity for using these tools in our role as communicators, and also, perhaps more importantly, the reputational, moral and ethical implications for organisations using these technologies.

While welcoming the introduction of ChatGPT as marking the democratisation of AI. Andrew is also quick to caution about the ethical challenges, warning that it is clear all these amazing technologies can be good or bad with the ease at which misinformation and disinformation can be weaponised being quite scary.

Will AI transform PR, and our organisations, or just be another tool in the kit bag of PR professionals? Andrew gives shares his views in what no doubt will be an ongoing discussion and debate for a long time to come

Published by Paul

Paul Cheal is an experienced financial and corporate communications leader with over 20 years’ experience working with Australian and global brands to build and protect their reputation.
He is a former journalist and an experienced academic, having been a casual tutor and lecturer at University of Technology, Sydney, teaching PR and communication to undergraduate and post graduate students. With a Masters of Public Communication from UTS as well as a Bachelor of Arts (Communications), Paul is passionate about Public Relations, this podcast is an opportunity to speak with key practitioners, academics, leaders and influencers from across the profession.