The term 'revolution' gets thrown around a lot in the world of technology, but it's more than justified in the case of artificial intelligence (AI) and content marketing. AI is reshaping how we approach content creation and distribution, and as someone passionate about this industry, I wanted to dive deep into what this means for content marketers.
I recently had the privilege of sitting down with Robert Rose, Chief Strategy Advisor at the Content Marketing Institute and a thought leader with over 20 years of experience, for an episode of the podcast, Artificially Intelligent Marketing. Robert has authored many several books on content marketing, including Killer Marketing, and Managing Content Marketing.
During our candid conversation, we delved into the intricacies of how AI transforms content marketing careers. From the challenges to the opportunities and all the fascinating details in between, here's what I discovered in our thought-provoking discussion examining the key findings from the Content Marketing Institute's Careers and Salary Outlook 2024 Report.
Watch the full interview with Robert Rose
Content Marketers and AI: A Love-Hate Relationship?
"Content marketers are a little freaked out right now," Rose candidly expressed during our conversation. There’s a sense of excitement mixed with trepidation. While AI tools like ChatGPT have emerged as helpful assistants for research and analysis, the looming question remains: Could AI devalue human creativity or even replace human roles altogether?
According to the report, the numbers tell a complex story: 36% of content marketers are already utilizing AI for writing assistance, and AI's top uses are for research (58%), analysing topics/trends (56%), and writing assistance (36%). Yet, 25% of marketers still abstain from using tools like ChatGPT. This conflicting data reflects the industry's uncertainty around AI's true potential and impact on creativity.
As Rose pointed out, AI isn’t a wholesale replacement for human input; rather, it should be seen as an assistive tool that complements human creativity and strategic thinking.
Navigating the Path of Content Marketing Careers
One of the startling findings from the CMI's 2024 Content Marketing Career and Salary Outlook was the uncertainty about career paths in content marketing. “I think AI has only complicated that over the course of the year because now we're seeing that even more so is that companies don't have career paths for content marketing," he explained.
So, where does that leave content professionals? Rose says embracing a media company mindset and treating content as a strategic capability is key.
The report's statistics further underscore the apprehensions about content marketing careers. 62% of respondents believe writers and editors will earn less respect due to AI, and 55% think writing could become commoditised. This highlights the fear that AI may erode the unique value that human creativity brings to the content.
Building skills beyond writing and adding wisdom—Rose's term for the fusion of experience, insight, and judgment—can make content marketers indispensable.
"Content marketers are a little freaked out right now," Robert Rose
AI's Role: Finding the Sweet Spot
“Becoming really good at [AI] means figuring out how it works best for you. It means go work with it, right? Go work with it and find out where it really works best for you,” Rose advised.
He’s right. Finding the balance between human creativity and AI-assisted efficiency will define content marketing's future. Tools should be embraced, but not without thoughtful integration and alignment with overall business goals and existing workflows.
The Human Edge: Creativity and Wisdom
"The differentiator that you have is that you are you, and that you bring a certain level of ideas and thinking to the table that AI just simply can't bring," Rose remarked.
That’s a profound statement that resonates with me. AI can crunch data, analyse trends, and even draft content, but it can’t replicate the spark of human creativity, the depth of subject matter expertise, or the nuanced judgment that comes from experience.
Embracing the AI Revolution Thoughtfully
The conversation with Robert Rose left me with renewed optimism and clarity. AI is here, and it's influencing content marketing in big ways. But rather than a force to be feared, it’s a tool to be leveraged, understood, and integrated thoughtfully.
But the concerns don't end there. A significant 40% of content professionals predict fewer jobs in the field due to AI. These concerns might seem alarming, but they coexist with positive aspects: over 50% of marketers enjoy their current roles, and salaries for content marketing roles generally remain healthy. It's a juxtaposition that speaks to both the promise and uncertainty of the AI-driven future.
"Thoughtful integration of AI along with empowering creativity will lead the next era of marketing success," Rose said.
The age of AI is undoubtedly upon us in the world of content marketing. Rose emphasised that finding the optimal balance between human creativity and AI efficiency will be key to succeeding in this evolving landscape. Rather than viewing AI with fear or reluctance, as content professionals, we must lean into this technology with openness and discernment. There will be challenges ahead, but by embracing AI thoughtfully, creatively, and strategically, we can unlock its full potential to take content marketing to new heights. The future remains bright and full of possibilities. But we must proceed with intention, wisdom, and an unwavering commitment to bringing value to our audiences. If we hold onto this human-centric approach, AI will become our ally, not our adversary, in spearheading the next era of marketing success.
As we venture further into this evolving content marketing landscape, staying informed and prepared is essential. The insights Robert Rose shared are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to understanding how AI is transforming our industry. I highly recommend checking out the Content Marketing Institute's 2024 Content Marketing Career and Salary Outlook for a deeper dive into the trends, opportunities, and challenges shaping content marketing careers today. This report, which served as the foundation for our interview, provides invaluable data and analysis to guide professionals at all stages of their careers. Let's embrace the future with knowledge, strategy, and, of course, creativity.
August 24, 2023