Why You Should Fear AI as a Content Writer (And How to Beat It)

A few months ago, I wrote a LinkedIn post titled 'Why you shouldn't fear AI as a content writer'. However, given how rapidly AI has advanced since then, especially with new systems like GPT-4 on the horizon and Google's increased adoption of AI for content generation, I believe content writers should be concerned about the impact of AI on their careers. Fear can be helpful in motivating us to improve and take action. As BuzzFeed recently announced a partnership with OpenAI to utilize AI for content creation and Google issued guidelines approving high-quality AI content, content writers should act now to build expertise and find their differentiation to avoid being automated out of a job.

For content writers, this is the time to upskill and specialize in avoiding being automated out of a job. If your writing consists of generic 'top 5' or 'top 8' listicles or you simply reword and repackage information from the first Google search results, AI systems can already do your job as well or better than you—and in a fraction of the time. They can generate and revise such work faster and more coherently than humans.

How To Beat AI As A Content Writer?

If you don't want to be automated from your content writing job, you should offer more than just writing skills. Rather than simply being a content writer, develop additional services and build a distinct personality. Here are some tips to help you beat AI.

1]Build expertise, not just general writing skills 

Build expertise as a content writer

The top 10% of workers in any field are experts; the remaining 90% are replaceable. If your skills are limited to rearranging words into sentences, you can be easily replaced by AI. Establish yourself as an expert in a subject by researching a topic in-depth and developing nuanced, insightful takes on your specialty areas. Content creation, not just completion, is what AI cannot do.

2] Demonstrate personal value

demonstarating personal value as a content writer
Ask yourself if you follow guidelines when taking on a content writing project or job. If so, AI may be better suited. Communicate with clients, point out issues, and provide recommendations to add value beyond the scope of the work. Clients will remember and value a person who delivered impact, not just a task.

3] Develop your personal brand and communication skills

Personal branding as a content writer
As AI generates more content, standing out will depend more on branding and networking. Establish a strong online presence, create a professional image, and continuously promote your work and expertise. Connecting with others and building relationships will be harder for AI to replicate.

4] Use AI for your benefit

Using AI as a content writer

Rather than seeing AI as a direct competitor, use it as a tool to augment your productivity and creativity. AI tools can help generate draft content you can then edit, improve, and customize. Incorporate AI into your process to get work done faster without sacrificing quality.

5] Diversify your services

Providing a wide range of services as a content writer

As AI generates more standard content, content writers should expand into other related services. For example, offer to consult or coach on content strategy, provide freelance editing or proofreading services, or start a podcast or YouTube channel to create unique audio and video content. The more strings you have to your bow, the less vulnerable you'll be to automation.

6] Stay adaptable

Learning new things as a content writer

AI progress may affect how and what content writers produce in unexpected ways. While specialization is important, you also need the flexibility to adapt to changes in technology and client needs. Keep learning and be willing to modify your services, processes, and skills as AI and other market shifts occur. An adaptable mindset will help you stay resilient even as AI transforms content creation.

Overall, content writers should view AI as an opportunity to sharpen their skills and be more strategic in their work, not just a looming threat. With continuous learning and diverse, human-focused services, content writers can find their place alongside AI tools. The future remains bright for those who are proactive and adaptable.