Why AI Will Never (entirely) Replace Writers
Talia and Noor, a husband and wife coaching team, preferred to go over their writing needs with me over the phone rather than sending the information in an email. Lots of people do, as it turns out. They want the conversation, the opportunity for questions asked and answered, and are typically grateful for my input and ideas based on years of writing experience. “I didn’t think of that before!” is a common refrain.
A 20-minute phone call or Zoom meeting often results in two to five pages of typewritten notes (mine) and a clear sense of the client’s voice, perspective, values, enthusiasms, humor, intention, priorities, and goals.
Talia and Noor are a dynamic, energetic team with scads of experience and professional knowledge in their field. They had a barebones website and no blog or newsletter program. Now they’d been asked to write an article about themselves and their business for a local publication and were at a loss.
I wrote their article. It was enormously gratifying. Talia emailed to say, “If I didn’t know better, I’d think we had written this. It is perfectly us!”
I went on to write web copy for a new and improved site that was more worthy of the great work they do and advised them about how to amplify both their message and Google analytics by posting blogs. They usually do photo blogs with captions, but whenever they want to create a written blog as thought leaders in their field, they call on me to write it.
You can’t schedule a phone call with AI.
You can’t use a metaphor to explain to AI what your client relationships are like.
You can’t rely on nuance and feeling to describe what you want to a bot.
Ongoing client relationships like the one I have with Talia and Noor are extremely common in my line of work. People come back again and again, realizing that I know what makes them tick, understand their perspectives on the work they do, and can write about just about anything in the world. (And have!)
The fact that I’m a grammar nerd and proofreader as well as a writer means I am as close as a non-robot can get to producing error-free copy.
AI can generate a lot of writing, but no matter how factual, there will never be any heart or soul in it. Hiring a writer will always be the best choice for people who want to reveal their unique, original, true selves. What better way to stand out from the crowd than to actually stand out from the crowd?
In a world where every plumbing supply company, every mental health non-profit, every martial arts school, and every yoga studio uses AI, what will set anyone apart aside from address and phone number? As much as we like to believe we use logic and deduction to make our important decisions, we use our guts just as much. The feeling we get when we visit this website vs. another one. The emotions that are sparked by the way one person describes their tutoring style and experience vs. someone else. The welcoming tone of an auto parts store’s Facebook ad vs. the absence of any tone in another one.
Important choices made by humans are always going to be based on human qualities. Logic is a human quality. So are emotion, intuition, and opinion.
AI did not design the lighting and table arrangements in your favorite coffee shop. It did not make your family doctor the compassionate person she is. It did not tell your plumber to give you a discount for being a loyal customer.
You are human.
AI is a tool.
A good writer is an ally.