Posted in Blog, Marketing, Media | Posted by Impact Partnership
Posted on May 8, 2023Reading Time: 5 minutes
By this point, it’s a given that financial advisors have heard about artificial intelligence generating paragraphs, speeches, and even entire video clips. AI software, spearheaded by programs such as ChatGPT, have kickstarted conversations about AI’s feasibility in the workplace. Given the apparent ease of generating texts with just a few sentences of input, is revolutionizing your business as easy as signing up for an account?
Not surprisingly, it’s a bit more complicated than that. Financial advisors could use ChatGPT as an effective tool to build and maintain their practice, but it’s important to understand its limitations and approach it intelligently. Here at Impact, we’ve compiled some potential downfalls of relying too heavily on ChatGPT and similar AI text generators. We’ve also included some best practices so you can optimize your practice and stay up to date with technological trends.
As we discuss the applications of artificial intelligence, keep in mind that the abuse of these tools works to your detriment. Our chief concern is making sure your business doesn’t sink so far into AI reliance that your clients no longer recognize you in your own business.
When pitching to a prospective client, you probably use a particular cadence and vocabulary, manners of speech which you’ve discovered over your time in the industry. It’s these patterns which make you you, and which make your practice yours.
Artificially generated texts lack your distinct qualities. Even your most plain-spoken client is able to tell the difference between a human’s cadence and a computer-generated block of text. When you rely too heavily and too indiscriminately on ChatGPT, you lose a sense of yourself in the minds of your clients. If you aren’t present in your business, then who is? Where have you gone?
Careful and pointed use of artificial intelligence, as we explain below, can help financial advisors avoid losing themselves, but it’s easy to get off track and become bland instead of distinct.
One of your most valuable assets — perhaps the most valuable asset — is your credibility. It’s what establishes your aptitude and lets clients know that you’re up to the task of managing their retirements. If clients discover that their financial advisor has been outsourcing a significant amount of their thinking to the Internet, they may lose trust in you managing their retirement.
Keep your credibility undamaged by using AI sparingly and in a supportive role. Tell clients that you’re utilizing the latest tech to bolster your practice, not letting it take the wheel.
Artificial intelligence works by pulling from online sources (otherwise referred to as “learning”) in order to hone its own voice, or the voices one may request a text embody. As wide as the Internet is, however, there’s still a limited number of sources any given AI can draw from in its learning. As a result, voices and tones can blend together, disparate texts sounding the exact same even if their different users don’t know about the other. Your voice — or what was left of it — will quickly sound like everyone else; you’ll have lost the ability to differentiate your practice from dozens of competitors.
Trust yourself to know yourself. Once you begin relying on what everyone else is doing, you lose the best advantage you have: yourself!
Recent collapses in tech industries remind us that these kinds of markets may not be as stable as we’d like. A company the size of FTX can be the standard-bearer of crypto for years, only to dissolve completely in a matter of days. Do you want a vital part of your business built on an unstable foundation?
This isn’t to say ChatGPT shouldn’t be used at all. However, keep in mind that such Internet-based technology can easily disappear overnight, or suddenly become prohibitively expensive proprietary IP.
This all said, artificial intelligence can still be a powerful tool to help your business. Used correctly, ChatGPT and its siblings can supplement advisors’ existing businesses and help hone your communication skills.
Vague prompts generate vague returns. As with all writing, detail serves to improve a piece. Make sure you’re clear with the AI about what the text should be — what you want it to say, topics that need to be covered, particular tones or voices which need to be heard, and the like.
You’ll also want to set limits and boundaries in your prompts. Don’t just ask for a lump piece, but specify your audience. Add phrases like, “I’m giving a speech to a group of people unfamiliar with the nuances of life insurance.” You can also set word counts for more sprawling or concise responses: “Write me a speech about life insurance that’s between 300 and 700 words.”
Don’t be a grandpa and treat artificial intelligence like you’re making a punch card for IBM. Prompts work best when you craft them in a conversational, direct manner. Ask it a question you’d ask a friend — don’t be shy!
A prompt like, “speech annuities short” will generate poor, totally unusable results. Phrase your queries like so: “Can you write me a short speech on the benefits of annuities?” A confident prompt will return a confident answer.
You can also ask the same question more than once. A few tweaks here and there depending on ChatGPT’s responses can get you closer to the text you want.
Don’t just accept the first draft as the final product — get your own touches in there! We earlier mentioned the loss of your voice in a general AI text; a quick once-over gives you a second look before you take the AI’s word for your own. You can catch grammatical and factual errors before they make it to your site while making sure what you want has actually been communicated.
Generators can help you optimize your output, but, as mentioned above, they can also lack a distinct voice and style. Editing gives you the opportunity to improve upon the text and insert your own style. Consider an AI text like a first draft ready for improvement.
There’s a reason people prefer prose written by, well, people. It shows that there’s someone behind the wheel guiding the way forward. They can tell the difference between someone copying and pasting random text off the web and someone using a suite of tools to the best of their ability.
At the end of the day, what you want representing your firm isn’t an amalgamated text pulled from all corners of the web, but you. ChatGPT, OpenAI, and other artificial intelligence generators aren’t the solutions to your problems — they’re tools to help you get to your solutions. Treat them as you would a hammer; a craftsman can’t pound a nail into wood with their bare hands (well, they shouldn’t), but they also have skills, resources, and knowledge beyond hammering. You’re not grabbing a hammer because the hammer is the solution, you’re grabbing a hammer because it gets you to your solution.
If you need a few ideas to get your texts off the ground, many quality examples can be found here, here and here. Try them out on your own! Test your language and see what generates the best results for you and your business.
And don’t forget — with any software or hardware, the most important component is you. No tool, no matter how cutting-edge or sophisticated, can work without a craftsman. Keep your eyes on the prize, don’t get lost in the bells and whistles, and you’ll find yourself atop the AI game.
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