Artificial intelligence (AI) is undeniably revolutionizing industries worldwide, and the marketing world is no exception. With the advent of generative AI, such as OpenAI’s Chat GPT, marketing professionals are presented with exciting possibilities for enhancing their day-to-day work and providing more time for strategic initiatives. However, as the buzz around AI grows louder, so does the need for it to be used responsibly and with intention. This proper usage especially applies to marketers, whose strategies and messages are pivotal to forming trust and genuine connection with a company’s target audiences. Marketers must consider several variables when utilizing generative AI to grasp what responsible AI usage involves.
Marketers have started using generative AI to draft blog posts, generate ad creative and copy, and ensure content hits on the proper keywords to enhance SEO. It makes sense—particularly as marketing budgets and resources decrease, the thought of plugging in a prompt and instantly receiving a finished piece of content seems like a dream come true.
However, legal challenges are quickly emerging amidst the excitement over AI’s potential. Copyright infringement lawsuits are arising over AI relying too heavily on previously created works. Additionally, the companies that own this generative AI have access to any information inputted into their systems, whether or not it’s confidential. This can, unfortunately, lead to severe data leaks. While generative AI can undoubtedly create efficiencies for marketers, it can also lead to some significant issues if used carelessly. As such, creating guardrails around your AI usage is important to ensure you protect yourself, your company, and your customers.
As generative AI continues to evolve, there’s an increasing number of opportunities to use and unintentionally abuse it. As marketers, it’s your responsibility to stick to guidelines that ensure you’re leveraging AI ethically and responsibly. There are a few key considerations to keep in mind.
Respect Intellectual Property
Generative AI platforms are trained on data lakes and question snippets to find patterns and create rules around them. That means everything this technology creates relies on previously existing material. To prevent copyright infringement, ensure the AI tools and models you use have appropriate licenses and permissions for generating content or images. Additionally, always reverse image search and fact-check information produced by AI to ensure it’s accurate. By preserving a balance between access to powerful AI tools and the rights of property owners, respecting intellectual property promotes a healthy and moral environment for both the owners of the property and users of generative AI.
Protect Your Privacy
As stated above, anything input into public tools, such as ChatGPT, can enter the public domain. Never under any circumstances share proprietary or confidential information with a public generative AI tool. You should also let your company’s IT team know if you plan to use generative AI technology so they can monitor for any breaches or data leaks that could jeopardize the security and confidentiality of the information held by your company. You can enforce data security standards while maintaining the integrity of intellectual property rights by emphasizing privacy protection in your generative AI usage.
Be Transparent and Ethical
While AI can be helpful in generating content, putting AI-generated words in someone’s mouth is dangerous territory. AI should never be used to impersonate a customer or employee in marketing materials, especially when creating user-generated content (UGC). Maintaining authenticity and credibility in these digital interactions requires upholding transparency and ethical standards. Users of generative AI should use caution when interacting with AI-generated content, and companies should be transparent about how they employ AI to create their content. This transparency fosters customer trust and prevents dishonest business practices. Respecting the limitations of impersonation protects individuals’ rights, averts potential harm, and guarantees that AI technology is used responsibly and morally in all situations.
With AI being leveraged to generate portraits of humans for use across a variety of applications as well as a wide use of face-reading implementations, it’s also important to note the bias that AI comes with. When using AI ethically, be aware of the data used to create this type of imagery and its bias to prioritize some groups over others, as well as the impacts of AI on people of color and other marginalized groups. In any form of marketing, always strive for honesty and authenticity.
Generative AI offers tremendous potential for marketing professionals to enhance their strategies and improve efficiency. However, this technology must be wielded responsibly. By respecting intellectual property, prioritizing data security, conducting transparent and ethical marketing practices, and maintaining human oversight, marketers can harness the full benefits of AI while minimizing potential risks.