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Curtis Sparrer is a featured contributor to The Definitive Guide to Public Relations in a Shifting Media Landscape.

Here's the complete contribution:

PR is going to rapidly automate with the help of Artificial Intelligence (AI). AI will change how PR will monitor media coverage and sentiment, providing more in-depth reporting that is faster and more actionable than the currently available offerings.

That does not mean AI will replace media outreach. The technology is not yet far enough along to meaningfully understand a journalist’s beat and interests to connect all the dots and offer an exclusive with the CEO at her house for example. I would expect that to happen in ten to fifteen years based on my experience with several AI companies in the market.

Right now AI companies are changing how customer service and sales are handled. Conversica, for example, has discovered that it takes nearly eight to eleven times to get a sales lead to convert to a “yes” or a “no.” While this might sound merely academic, it has real-world implications for the usefulness of AI.

No human being would follow up with one lead eight to eleven times. But an AI sales assistant would, ensuring no lead slips through the cracks. Conversica's AI is smart enough to understand responses and when it gets confused it checks with a real person for a judge’s ruling. This sentiment analysis will be invaluable in determining media sentiment on a massive scale that goes beyond the mere rankings of positive, neutral and negative.

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