Article by Olly Reed, Marketing Manager.
Whether we like it or not, the genie is well and truly out of the bottle when it comes to the uses of artificial intelligence in marketing. Ok, fine, everyone is using that metaphor. What about the cat is out of the bag? Or, Pandora's box has been opened? Fine, let’s just go for the genie thing…
And no, before you ask, ChatGPT didn’t write this article; I’m a real human, with real industry experience, and real thoughts and feelings about all sorts of things, from dogs to broccoli, and now, thoughts about ChatGPT.
What is ChatGPT?
For example, if I put in the words “Write a sentence about a museum”, - ChatGPT responds, "A museum features a collection of exhibits and artefacts that showcase various aspects of history and culture."
Basic and boring (if not factually true), but if I’m more specific with my prompts, for example: Write a funny and witty social media post about the new museum exhibit all about ancient Egypt, you get something like this: "Walk like an Egyptian (or at least try to) at our new exhibit! Join us in a mummy-fying adventure through the sands of time 🏜️👻 #Tut-allyAwesome #SarcophagusHumor".
That was just an example, but the possibilities are endless(ish). Is it perfect? No. Is it quick? Yes, indeed.
So, what does this mean for you if you work in marketing for a visitor attraction? AI is used in banking, shopping, and customer service, so as marketers, we have to embrace it and use it to help our day-to-day roles. But it’s not a magic tool to fix your problems. It takes time to use and has to be used carefully.
I know what you’re thinking, at last someone from a marketing agency is finally talking about ChatGPT! (Alright, Captain Sassy, but this bit is important for SEO and for those who might want to know the basics).
“ChatGPT is a language model that can generate human-like responses to user input”.
That’s the description of what ChatGPT thinks of itself. In reality, ChatGPT is a tool to generate outputs based on knowledge of what’s come before. This means although it can seem like it sometimes, ChatGPT isn’t coming up with “original thought”. Instead, it crawls the internet for information and answers based on what it finds.
Four ways attractions marketing teams should use ChatGPT
1. Generate Content Ideas
With limited budgets, time and (probably staff), you’ll need to get a great content stream out to your audiences online to inspire visitors. This takes time and effort, and when you’ve scheduled a quick hour here or there to get some ideas together, it can be hard to feel creative and think of some. ChatGPT is great for inspiration.
If you know you want to attract a certain audience, simply prompt, “What would be good social media content ideas for (insert your attraction)?”.
Or how about “Write a Facebook post about X” (don’t just write “X”, replace it with your own topic.
Unless you’re an alphabet-based visitor attraction, then a Facebook post about the letter X is right up your street!).
These will be pretty generic content ideas, but use these to spark new and fresh ones.
If you don’t know who you want to target, you can use the next point…
2. Creating Audience Profiles
If you’ve got your insights and analytics set up, you’ll have a rough idea of your target market for your attraction.
This could be mothers aged 25 to 35; it could be retired couples. Whatever or whomever it might be, audience personas are fantastic tools to build out examples of your target audiences so that you can steer your marketing efforts at them.
This can be done using tools online or can take a while using market research and analysis. If you’re looking for quick and basic audience profiles, you can prompt ChatGPT to create one for you.
For example, I typed in, “Create an ideal audience persona for a visitor attraction based in Bath; their target audience is retired women with grandkids”.
And was shocked at how insightful the response was. It included; name, age, location, occupation, marital status, family, income, interests, values, goals, pain points, messaging, content and marketing channels.
Using this persona, you can even prompt it to feed into point three....
3. Getting started on blog content
Ok, so we all know that blogs are great for building your website’s search performance and creating advocacy with your audience, but getting started can be hard. Try using ChatGPT with a rough outline of the kind of blog content you’d like to write, then once it’s created something, copy that out and use that as a basis for your blog content. I always find editing and improving text that’s already there is much easier than starting from scratch.
If your attraction has a tone of voice document or brand guidelines, you can input these before you start, adding the words you describe your tone of voice in the prompts. For example “Write a blog in a direct, confident, and friendly tone”. You can even copy and paste your best blog content on your site, and ask ChatGPT to read it and review the article's tone of voice and style. Then, ask it to replicate it for a blog about your new subject.
Can’t think of a subject? Try the prompt “Write 10 blog titles for (insert your attraction name) about their new event/ experience (insert here).”
But, be warned, you can’t just copy and paste content from ChatGPT straight to your site.
Why not?! I hear you ask.
Well, firstly, the blog is a bit robot-like. It doesn’t read like it was written by one of your lovely staff members. Also, search engine companies like Google are building AI to crawl your content and see if AI wrote it. AI policing AI… ok, this sounds like the start of a film, but the important part is it’ll always push content believed to be written by a person. So, get ahead of that and only use it for inspiration.
Also, there’s no point in publishing ten average, boring blogs clearly written by AI. The internet is full of average content, and this won’t help your brand.
4. Website Coding (Wildcard Alert!)
If your website is built on WordPress for example, you’ll have lovely blocks or elements you can input into your website. But, sometimes, those elements don’t do exactly what you need. So, you can either learn how to HTML code, pay a developer or if it’s a quick fix and small job, ask ChatGPT to help.
If you’ve got the code you’re currently using, copy and paste it into ChatGPT and ask it to describe what the code does. Then, you prompt it to amend the code with the change you’d like “crop the image into a square” or “add a button linking to this”. Keep in mind, it won’t be able to help with big jobs and make sure you’ve saved the pages code somewhere before you start fiddling, but again, it’s another example of how ChatGPT can be used to save time for internal marketing teams.
From my time working in attractions, the marketing team normally was made up of less than a handful of people, but roles those people would often take up would include; graphic designer, editor, copywriter, social media manager, content creator, data analysis, market research, sales, press, print, website design, and more.
The chances are you’re getting some help with one or a few of these, but if not, ChatGPT could help with copywriting, press releases etc. But the one that has blown my mind recently is it can help with website coding.
In the end...
ChatGPT is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to using AI to help with marketing. There are programmes for scheduling content, creating images, editing videos, planning meetings, and the list goes on. Some are free; others aren’t. The best ones, you won’t know how good they are until you have a play.
For any questions about using ai to help with your marketing, you can either ask ChatGPT, or drop me an email on [email protected], and we can talk.
And remember, ChatGPT is here to help us save time, not get lazy. Use it as a prompt or a muse, not as a replacement for a person’s talent, skills and experience. Good luck, and if you’re looking for a list of the best prompts for getting priceless content inspiration, drop us a line.
Thoughts by Olly Reed
Olly is our Marketing Manager at Navigate and leads our content and new business strategy. With 10+ years experience in marketing & comms for tourism & purpose brands, Olly is passionate about supporting organisations reach the heights they have the potential to reach.