COVID-19 has accelerated the digital revolution in every industry, including public relations. With the adoption of new technology changing the ways people communicate, it is time for public relations professionals to utilize artificial intelligence in their campaigns.
Despite common assumptions, the field of public relations has been historically sluggish in the innovation department. Building and maintaining human relationships is an essential part of the profession. Although human connection is something that cannot be replaced by artificial intelligence, innovative technology will help make data-heavy job responsibilities easier.
With the implementation of artificial intelligence, public relations professionals can improve the efficiency of their work. New software that analyzes data at an extraordinary speed and scale will help produce accurate data that will amplify your public relations campaigns.
Natural Language Generation
Natural Language Generation is a subfield of artificial intelligence that is defined as a software process that automatically transforms data into plain- English content. The technology acts as a human analyst that interprets data and turns it into sentences and paragraphs for you. This can help public relations professionals instantly generate press releases and other press materials, however, it generally works best when connected to large data sets, such as earnings reports or sales figures.
Many big publishers – including Forbes, Washington Post and Bloomberg – already use Natural Language Generation to help provide reporters with helpful data and templates for news stories. Although these outlets are all starting to implement artificial intelligence into their work, they are doing so in different ways. Bloomberg was the first to implement artificial intelligence into their financially focused news stories. They use a program called “Cyborg” which turns financial reports into news stories like a reporter would. Whereas Forbes uses an AI tool, “Bertie”, to assist in providing reporters with first drafts and templates for news stories.
Rather than using technology to replace journalists with robots, these outlets are using Natural Language Generation to assist their journalists in high-value work. Public relations professionals need to look at the success of these big publishers and strive to meet their innovation.
Artificial intelligence can help businesses better manage their workflows. If implemented correctly, artificial intelligence will allow businesses to automate repetitive tasks, scan through online media, navigate large data sets and provide public relations teams with a sophisticated advantage. This is beneficial for public relations teams and agencies of all sizes. With public relations team members spending less time on manual research and administrative tasks that can be automated, they will have more time to focus on their client and media relationships.
One example of how artificial intelligence has been integrated into public relations is Cision Communications Cloud’s advanced sentiment technology. This technology has the ability to automatically and accurately determine audience sentiment. Rather than manually sifting through coverage to search for stories and company mentions, technology can now do it for us. Instead of reading the entire article at length to interpret tone, automated systems interpret context and attribute true meaning. Cision Communications Cloud’s advanced sentiment technology uses proximity and parameters around keywords to ensure we have the most accurate understanding of audience sentiment around the coverage. This saves public relations professionals time and improves efficiency.
Erica DeProspo is an Account Coordinator at Flackable, an award-winning public relations agency representing financial and professional services brands nationwide. To learn more about Flackable, please visit www.flackable.com.