As AI writing tools continue to grow, their use has been met with much debate. Some believe they result in low-quality, disingenuous content. Others believe they help good writers get their content out faster and better. Who’s right?
We believe both sides have a point.
As with any tool, the output is only as good as the user’s abilities. While AI writing tools can pump out tons of content, without skilled oversight, it remains quantity over quality.
However, for a skilled writer willing to invest some time learning the technology, AI writing tools can supercharge the process and result in higher-quality content.
So how do we believe writers can use this emerging technology to improve their work? These 5 are a great start (with screenshots from Jasper ai, which we continue to demo and learn).
How hard can it be to generate new ideas for content day in, day out?
We hear you. Hard!
We all strive to know our niche as best we can. This entails staying involved, reading other’s content, looking through groups and forums to engage in hot topics. We think of new ideas during discussion with others or our own struggles.
So how does an AI writing tool help with this? Well, using Jasper’s tool as an example, idea generation is a consistent feature amongst the majority of players in this space.
By providing input on your focus area, examples for Jasper to pull from, intended audience, etc. it quickly spits out topic ideas for you to consider. It doesn’t replace the ideation phase, but it sure adds possibilities to the mix.
Only you can know which are most relevant to your audience, and ultimately execute on an article that fulfills the intentions of writing about that topic. But to get the juices flowing, the Topic Idea feature is amazing.
The next step in drafting quality content is to lay out your main points. Every writer knows this is an important phase, as it sets the strategy for how you’ll make your point to the reader.
And especially in today’s world, let’s face it, many readers skim articles. This makes the headings coming out of a solid outline even more important. If they’re effective, the reader continues on. Ineffective and you lose them.
So how does an AI writing tool help with this phase of the process? Well, pretty similar to the idea generation discussed above. By inputting the blog title/topic, the tool can kick out a handful of potential outline ideas.
In our experience so far, these outlines have been mixed but helpful. We have yet to see one that we can take off the shelf and work with. For example, we intentionally took the screenshot featured here as none of the options (shown and left off the screenshot) worked, at all.
But, again just as above, they definitely help get the juices flowing and/or fill in gaps in what we were thinking.
All writers have off days… or months! Sometimes we slog through getting our thoughts on paper, but just can’t get it to a place where it truly engaged the reader. These can be extremely frustrating projects, where work is either set aside, published in it’s underwhelming state, or tackled through sheer brute force effort and time.
AI writing tools can help here as well. Our favorite for pure readability is the free Hemingway Editor. Plug in your draft and the editor immediately shows you how simple the piece is to read, and where you can make changes to improve readability. This is a must-use tool for us. Whether for an article, project work we’re doing elsewhere, or even an important email. We. Love. It.
Beyond use-cases like above, AI writing tools like Jasper also include features to improve copy. Enter existing content and the tool can generate alternatives for you to consider. For writers like us here at Write it Forward, using the tool to try and change the tone to something like “funny” or “casual” can be helpful. (Not our forte!).
Once again, this tool may not hit the mark 100%. But for a writer struggling to turn a phrase, seeing multiple options and being able to regenerate as the content is refined can be extremely useful. Sometimes it only takes a tweak to break through, and iterating this way gets you to that breakthrough faster.
Being a great writer does not mean being a great copywriter.
So, having frameworks built into AI writing tools can help writers bridge that gap. They may not turn anyone into copywriting experts, but they can sure improve effectiveness relative to the baseline.
For example, most would know the AIDA framework for writing sales copy (Attention, Interest, Desire, Action). Most would also know that very few copywriters nail executing that framework on the first try. As with most writing, it takes iterating to find the write combo to engage an audience from the first A to the last A. So, once again, enter AI writing tools like Jasper.
In this screenshot, we once again used a basic description of this blog to see what AIDA outputs it would produce. While a few of them overpromised (we don’t have any courses in the works yet… and not jumping into video at the moment!), these still offered options from which we could build to solid final products.
For this example, we also included the 2nd two outputs beyond what was cut off in the first screenshot.
The last one wasn’t too bad at all. Would still edit to a more polished, accurate final product. But much easier to do that then start from scratch. And, once we had a good final produce, we could run it through Jasper again to see if any further iterations hit the mark even closer.
Once again, writing and re-writing can be done manually… or it can be done with the help of a tool like this. The expertise of the (human) writer will mean the difference between great final content and mediocre. But the great writer can get their faster… and potentially even better than they would have on their own.
Any writer has their strengths and weaknesses. For writers that tend to err on the serious, factual, and/or academic side, “creativity” could be something that either lacks, or just takes more mental strain than others. AI writing tools can help with this, by taking original ideas and putting a more creative spin on the content.
These features can help improve headlines, captions, and bullet points on work like landing pages or sales emails. For example, Jasper has the following features easily accessible in “Power mode” to support creativity in areas very critical to successful content creation:
- Persuasive Bullet Points
- Email Subject Lines
- Unique Value Propositions
- Engaging Questions
- Perfect Headline
Overall, we’re sure the debate over the positive and negative impacts of AI writing tools will continue. But we don’t believe the matter should be viewed as “all good” or “all bad”.
Great writers wordsmith their work to express their ideas in the most engaging way possible. This involves writing and re-writing, struggling over phrasing, and sometimes just hitting pure writer’s block.
The 5 features we’ve shown above are just some of the ways we believe AI writing tools help great writers move through these phases faster and more effectively. And ultimately produce higher quality work.