I’ve been wanting to write about how AI is going to impact freelance writers for a while. I wanted to wait though. See how the land lies with AI before I set my stall out.
But we can wait no more. AI is here and we need to talk about how this is going to impact freelance writers. What does it mean for our careers? What does it mean for writing?
Here’s what I think in a nutshell:
AI won’t eliminate writers. AI will eliminate writers who don’t effectively use AI, and those who don’t differentiate themselves by offering unique value to their clients.
This is how I envisage we can use AI tools like ChatGPT to make sure we’re part of the pool of freelance writers who aren’t left behind...
Increased productivity when planning content
One of the biggest benefits of tools like ChatGPT for freelance writers is an increase in productivity. AI can help writers save time and streamline processes by automating the time-consuming stuff associated with writing content.
As a freelance writer, you can use AI to help:
For example, I asked ChatGPT: “Can you generate blog post ideas about the best places to travel in Europe in winter?”
It gave me this:
New content formats and channels
It’s likely that AI will lead to new content formats and channels. For example, AI-powered chatbots and virtual assistants are becoming increasingly common.
These are able to interact with users in a surprisingly conversational and engaging way. As writers, this means we may need to adapt our skills for these new channels, alongside the usual blog posts, emails, web pages, press releases and social media copy we’ve become used to.
The truth is, AI is likely to increase competition in the world of online writing. As AI becomes more advanced it will become easier for organisations and individuals to create high-quality content using AI tools.
While there are certainly challenges to be faced, there are also heaps of opportunities for writers who are willing to embrace AI and adapt their skills. I see increased competition mainly affecting the low-pay, low-value writer/client relationships.
Can AI replace freelance writers?
I hope it seems obvious to say that AI absolutely cannot replace our creativity and unique perspectives as human beings.
As writers, we need to double-down on this, because it’s exactly our unique perspectives and judgements as humans that adds the most value to clients.
Keep being the awesome writer you are, and use AI to your advantage. Get it to do all the boring stuff – all the nitty-gritty tasks you procrastinate over – then use your unique humanness to take your writing career to the next level.
The way I see it is this: we can look at AI as something to be anxious about, as a threat to everything we’ve built up so far, or we can see it as an opportunity to grow and adapt – and become better freelance writers.
Let me know what you think about AI in the comments at the bottom of this page.