While many companies invest all their marketing dollars in digital marketing, leaders in the public relations (PR) space claim they can achieve similar or better results combining public relations with artificial intelligence. Artificial intelligence (AI) and other advanced technologies have penetrated every aspect of life. In a survey of 6000 consumers, 33 percent responded that they think they use AI technology; in reality, 77 percent were using AI.
Public relations is often an integral part of companies, big or small. But traditionally, most PR operations rely on humans. For instance, press releases, memos, and other written communication are done by PR specialists, either inside the company or hired through an agency.
AI is now making strides in the PR industry, with many impressive tools in the market utilizing AI to improve PR capabilities for PR agencies and businesses alike. Still, PR has a long way to go toward fully embracing AI.
Here are five ways AI can benefit and change PR:
Speech to Text Conversion
AI’s capabilities to transcribe speech can come in handy for PR teams immensely. This technology can be a big time saver because there’s a lot of use of audio speech in PR, from transcribing interviews to writing about podcasts.
Contact Search and Recommendation
Perhaps the biggest benefit AI can offer PR is to identify and recommend contacts from media to pitch. In the State of PR 2021 report, 34 percent of PR professionals said that finding journalists is their biggest challenge. It’s time-consuming, and often unsuccessful.
“With data analysis and language processing capabilities, AI can find and recommend contacts that are perhaps more likely to respond to PR pitches,” says Valentin Saitarli, CEO and co-founder of the AI-powered public relations platform PRAI.co. Artificial intelligence can handle these mundane and arguably more challenging tasks, freeing up time for other important PR tasks.
Also, by selecting journalists and media personalities relevant to the company’s niche/industry, it increases the likelihood of your pitches being picked up.
Predictive Data Analysis
Big data is transforming different industries by culling huge amounts of data for actionable insights from huge amounts of data. But data analytics doesn’t just stop at contact recommendations. It can also further predict granular details about those contacts so PR pros can make better decisions about what to pitch and to whom.
Predictive data analysis can also help identify trends in PR and their likely success rate. This can help tweak PR strategy and pursue contacts most likely to help you achieve your goals.
Natural Language Generation
AI’s natural language generation capabilities have come a long way. In 2016, the Washington Post experimented with an AI tool to cover the Rio Olympics. In 2020, the first AI-written press release was distributed.
With this technology, companies can use AI bots to write press releases and other materials for PR. As these tools learn more, they can sound more natural and relevant.
Fact-checking is arguably the most important task in publishing news. Because of the amount of data it processes, AI can back all of its claims with facts.
Processing Emotions in Responses
The next step in AI, particularly robotics, is human emotion recognition. This application can have positive consequences for PR. By recognizing emotions and sentiments, PR tools can assess what to say or write and how to handle a situation.
With language processing and facial expression recognition, AI tools may be able to register how the public or media responds to a brand’s image.
Quantifying ROI in PR
Saitarli says “AI is truly revolutionary for public relations, which is why we created PRAI. It’s an AI-powered platform designed for small and medium-sized businesses to take autonomy of their PR processes.”
Companies can use the power of AI to do most of the work in-house and generate publicity for their brands.
It is often difficult to measure the ROI of a PR campaign, because visibility and authority tend to be unquantifiable. One of the benefits of using software-based PR outreach, however, is in its ability to provide campaign metrics that help quantify campaign success.