media update’s Jenna Cook takes a look at how artificial intelligence will change the public relations industry.

AI has been at the forefront of technological developments in recent years. Before we delve into that, here is a closer look at AI.

When most people refer to AI technology, they are actually talking about machine learning technology. Is this AI? Yes and no. It technically is AI, but it’s a subset thereof.

Let’s break this down a bit:

AI: A branch of computer science that focuses on creating intelligent systems that can perform and react like humans. AI systems are developed to perform tasks like visual perception, decision-making, speech recognition and language translation.
Machine learning: A process in which machines are fed data and continually develop the algorithms they have been programmed with. The more data the machines are fed, the more accurately it can process similar information in future, and the more sophisticated the algorithms will become.
What comes along with these kinds of technological development is the expectation that businesses will quickly embrace and adapt to the new technologies being made available.

The PR industry is no exception to this and, with the accessibility of these new advances, it won’t be long until your PR work experience gets a serious upgrade.

This raises the question: Where exactly does AI belong and what does it have to offer you as a PR professional?

Here are three ways how AI will revolutionise your career in the PR industry:

1. Machine learning automates daily PR tasks

As PR professionals, you know that the industry requires you to spend a large portion of your day scheduling meetings, crafting press releases, analysing data and managing your client’s strategic insights. And in such a demanding job, humans are bound to make a few mistakes here and there.

With the automation, or at the very least, assistance, of these repetitive tasks, machine learning technology will be able to more accurately collect and collate data to help increase the time you have to craft creative client solutions.

It will also allow you to master your client relationships, which will ensure the longevity of your professional career. You can use your new found time to communicate with clients more effectively, ask more questions and be present for more opportunities.

Developing these human-centric traits is what will drive you to gain and maintain good business relationships. 

2. Being an influential PR pro is made easy with machine learning

In the PR industry, you know that it is important to influence the mind of the consumer in the direction that suits the client’s objectives. With the expansion of the Internet, a large distinction between ‘online influence’ and ‘real world influence’ has been created.

“PR pros spend enormous resources on influencing people who might not be influential at all,” says Raf Weverbergh, managing partner of Brussels-based PR agency FINN PR and founder of Mustr. By using machine learning to assist you in classifying relevance and reach, you can ensure that you will be able to attract the right influencer for your client.

3. Machine learning can assist PRs in formulating news insights

As a PR, you know that one of the best ways to build, enhance and protect your clients’ brands is by staying informed with the latest news and events. News never stops pouring in, meaning that you need to be constantly monitoring the media and looking for trends.

Machine learning technology has the capacity to work around the clock to collect and collate the news so that you don’t have to, leaving you with more time to uncover insights that can inform your campaigns.

Going forward, you should view machine learning capabilities like a dedicated assistant, giving you more time to focus on developing and implementing creative strategies to create brand awareness, audience engagement and thought leadership.

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The impact of AI technology on companies and consumers is increasing. But how do we ensure that it is for the best? Learn more about the ethics of AI in our article, Why ethical AI will make the world a more awesome place.