The importance of (real, actual) content in an AI world
How do you ensure the content being generated by AI tools, about your organization‘s core issues, is accurate and equitable?
Advice on using AI tools like ChatGPT and Google Bard to create content for you is everywhere. In most cases, the big selling point is how quick and easy it is to turn out blog posts, email newsletters, and even longer pieces of content. But how do these AIs get the information that ultimately ends up in all these blog posts, email newsletters, and web pages, and what if they’re cranking out content on your core issues that’s biased or inaccurate?
Where does the content generated by AIs come from?
The short answer is “from crawling web pages” the same way search engines do. But AI content differs from search engine results in a few key ways:
- AIs typically synthesize the information found on many different websites into a single response
- They often don’t indicate all the sources they used to come up with your content
- When sources are cited, readers usually don’t visit the original site, so they’re not getting the appropriate context for the information
Add to this the tremendous amount of hype surrounding these new tools, and there’s real concern that people will accept the information generated by these new tools without much effort to confirm its authenticity.
As more and more people lean on AIs to generate content for them, the sources these AIs gather will play an increasing role in shaping the narrative people encounter when they read online. And for a nonprofit communications team, what could be more central to your mission, than ensuring when people seek information on the issues you care about, they find accurate and equitable information?
How do organizations ensure their voice and perspectives are included in AI generated content?
By understanding how these tools work, we can identify some strategies to maximize the role your organization’s content plays in informing AIs about your issues.
When creating their responses, AIs are looking for sources with authority. With that in mind, two strategies to consider:
Publish the most thorough, up-to-date, authoritative content you can on the issues you care about. Original research, data, relationships with acknowledged experts, etc. all signal to AIs that your content is to be trusted over, for example, opinion pieces found on media sites.How does Report Kitchen help?Report Kitchen microsites are ideal for this because you can adopt a thorough, hierarchical, long-form approach that’s often at odds with the “Keep It Short and Sweet” approach typically advised for an organizational site. We’ve recently seen organizations reorganize their site content and institute per-department caps as low as 5 web pages. While this makes for a tidy site and streamlined browsing experience, it leaves substantial bodies of work like 120-page reports with no option but to post monster PDFs that aren’t reader- or crawler-friendly. In contrast, a Report Kitchen site retains the overall authority of your organization while providing an optimized experience for readers of all abilities, on all devices, and ensures both search engine and AI crawlers can easily access and categorize your content.
Demonstrate authority in your field by getting as many high-quality, relevant websites as you can to link from their website to yours. This is one of the strongest signals both search engines and AIs look at to judge quality. So reach out to organizations with a similar focus to your own and ask if they’re willing to link to your site – and be prepared to return the favor!How does Report Kitchen help?Report Kitchen sites are ideal for this because unlike with a PDF, sites can link directly to parts of your content that are most relevant to their audience. This makes them more likely to add your link, and opens the door to requesting links from many more sites, because they only need to see relevance to one or more topics in your report, rather than the entire scope of your organization.
At Report Kitchen, we’ve begun monitoring how, and how often, the different AI bots gather information from the sites we’ve built, and how that information ultimately shows up in AI-generated responses. In upcoming blog posts we’ll be sharing some of our findings, along with more strategies on making sure your organization’s information, perspective and voice are part of this increasingly critical information landscape.
Publishing your reports, toolkits, and resource guides as interactive web content is better for both humans and robots!
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