How to use Artificial Intelligence To Produce meaningful Content
Warning: This text has been analyzed by an Artificial Intelligence eTool, showing:
- a neutral tone
- a Flesch-Kincaid score of 7.5
- a reading time of 5mn
Notwithstanding the negative use of “too many long words,” it has been rated “A.”
Discover below how I did it….
Are you a Digital Marketer trying to get the most out of your content?
Have you already socialized & measured your copy quality in any imaginable way?
Still, you feel your content could be better. Why not using Artificial Intelligence metrics to measure engagement and produce a better copy?
When you produce content, keep in mind that you need your readers to:
- find relevant information
- stay engaged with your content
- complete a request through a CTA
But once your prospects land on your blog, they start cracking your copy. If that takes way much energy, their interaction declines or stops, and the result is negative churn.
You have already noticed that, empirically.
Still, you don’t know how to measure it mathematically.
When your copy is confusing: measure the confusion
What you need to know is, among the millions of word on your website, which ones are helpful and which ones are hurtful?
How do you measure if your copy is too compact, complicated, disconcerting or confusing?
Yes, Content Marketers work harder to write interesting content.
They most probably know very well what they’re talking about, and they are most probably very excited about sharing their knowledge with others…
However, there is an obvious blind spot.
They don’t see the big picture!!
They’re so close to their writings that they don’t read it through their reader’s eyes.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) etools will help you with your content
AI is what’s everybody is talking about, but nobody isn’t very sure what it is…
Most people are already using AI to strengthen their writing, but they don’t realize it. The current iteration of Microsoft Word comes bundled with a proofreading editor that’s powered by machine-learning technologies. Microsoft Editor is designed to work like spellcheck on steroids; for instance, it uses Bing’s “Smart Graph” technology to identify poor word choices based on context.
Other smart writing tools, often available as online services, can also parse content like emails or business reports and make suggestions to improve not just spelling and grammar but also reader engagement and impact.
So, advances in Artificial Intelligence language processing will test your copy for clarity & readability.
Clarity is very important because it is the root of reader experience and eventually engagement.
AI can move you away from a subjective to an objective approach, based on KPIs.
What’s more, AI applications will help content marketers & copywriter to:
– analyze content performance in real-time
– discover, create and distribute content
– test, optimize, and personalize content
– create, publish, and monitor copy for social media campaigns
There are a lot of examples where the AI is already helping companies make smarter decisions.
For example, thanks to Watson Analytics, Under Armour offers personalized training advice to its customers. On the other hand, from creating business content to collecting data, the AI applications have revolutionized the way businesses conduct their regular tasks, saving them a lot of time while helping them focus on high-value business activities.
HubSpot’s Content Strategy Tool, Automated Insights’ data-driven narratives, and Watson are just a few examples of how the AI can remove the guesswork from content marketing and focus on high-value creative tasks.
An AI system built by Saffron (Intel,) helped USAA improve their accuracy of guess rate from 55% to 88%. Businesses using AI-based content marketing platforms can accurately predict the next move of their customers and prospects alike, thereby offering them the exact product they’re looking for.
Let’s define readability and clarity
Content clarity is the benchmark for user to measure how clear is your copy.
Clarity is a User Benchmark
Neuroscience has proven that when you are processing words, there is a far greater cognitive load on your brain than it is for images. We are wired to avoid brain overload, because it consumes way too much energy. So when your brain starts processing too much information, it simply shuts down. And that’s why it’s difficult to read complex copy.
On top of that, attention span is moer and more shorter (thanks to PTSD). It means that your visitors have a lower patience for confusion.
When “poorly written” means “too complex”…
You would think that the best copy would be long phrases embedded with several concepts or ideas mingled with a dependent clause and an independent clause, sprinkled with unusual words that are difficult to understand because they are too compact.
Were you able to follow the lead of that phrase?
That’s because studies have shown that the average American reads at a 7th-to-8th-grade level. That is not because education is deficient in the US or because of low academic achievement.
Studies show that even highly educated people rapidly disconnect rather than spend the mental energy to understand dense, or complicated sentences.
A recent survey showed that 81% of readers said poorly written copy wasted too much of their time.
That’s one reason Reader’s Digest and Time magazine are successful. Both have a very low readability index.
When given a choice, people prefer low-readability index over 40/50 word-long sentences with several challenging ideas.
A Sound Definition of Readability
There’s a broad consensus that for business communication, the gold standard of readability is grade 8 or lower.
This is the way to achieve that:
1. Write short sentences
Keep paragraphs and sentences short and to the point.
Short sentences are easier
- to browse
- to read
- to understand.
One sentence should only have one simple thought. More than one idea per phrase creates complexity & os an open invitation to confusion and disengagement.
2. Choose simple words
- “help” instead of “facilitate”
- “buy” instead of “purchase”
- “use” instead of “utilize”
- “8” instead of “eight”
- “near” instead of “close proximity”
- “plan” instead of “forecast”
- “&” instead of “and”
- “for” instead of “in the amount of”
- “start” instead of “commence.”
Shocking? You are not writing a dissertation, you are writing to make people interact with you and take action…
You get the big picture…
Use longer words only if your meaning is so specific that no other words will work.
3. Be specific
4. Use the active voice
Readers prefer the Subject, Verb, Object (SVO) sentence sequence. That’s what’s called the active voice.
Reduce passive voice below 5% of your total content. Active rather than passive voice makes it clearer who needs to do what.
By shortening sentences & using the active voice; you make any subject more readable & engaging without any “dumbing down.”
5. Eliminate useless words
Qualifying words, such as “very,” “little” “actually” or “rather” add nothing to your meaning and increase the size of your sentences.
“Actually, it is very important to basically avoid crap words because they are rather empty and sometimes a little distracting.”
Mark Twain once suggested that you should switch to “damn” any time you fell compeled to write “very”; your editor will delete it, and the writing will be just as it is upposed to be.
6. Edit ruthlessly
Delete, delete, delete!! Shorten, remove, and re-write any sentence that does not add to the meaning. You can write in a casual style, but don’t add extra words without good reason.
To make this easier, break your writing into 3 steps:
- Write your entire copy
- Forget about your text for a couple of days
- Come back to your copy anew & start editing
7. Don’t write your copy like a credit card agreement
Credit card agreements are written at a level way beyond the reading ability of the average U.S. consumer.
Of course, it’s done on purpose.
Credit card agreements are mind-numbingly obtuse.
Consumers struggle, or give up trying to read them. Most people say the agreements are overly “wordy,” “confusing,” “complex,” “tedious” and “painful” to read. Only 26% of cardholders say they read their contracts.
If the very 1st sentence is overly complex and long, you will not read the rest of your contract. That’s exactly what the banks want…
The clarity problem isn’t new, but bloggers and marketers are now producing vast quantities of content. And with that proliferation comes a quality control issue.
When writing anything, you must make sure that your copy is written at an 8th or 10th grade eight on the readability level scale.
Marketers who create content should set similar goals for published content.
Behavioral change is tough but you can do it!
Getting bloggers to modify their writing habits is difficult. Organizations that use advertising agencies, freelancers or internal writers face enormous challenges when it comes to consistency &brand consistency.
Simply getting you to test your copy is challenging.
Marketers should adopt a “people, process, tools” approach.
People: The people element must target 2 factors:
As a marketer, you need to take “writing-for-the-web-style” training courses to raise awareness of readability. These trainings not only cover websites but also less intense content including social posts, ads, emails, letters, flyers & brochures.
Process: The process part aims at:
– mapping the current publication operation
– identifying what steps can be automated.
However, many marketers rush to implement tools without a complete understanding of what the current or future state of their process will look like. That rarely works.
Tools: when the people & process elements are sorted, you’re ready to consider Artifical Intelligence tools.
Choose your tools carefully
One of the biggest benefits of using IA tools is that you can measure readability with objective KPIs.
Quantitative measurements move you away from subjective opinions and ease the editorial friction between copywriters and editors/publishers.
Marketers & copywriters should consider a two-headed solution:
- AI tools that help copywriters measure, edit, and revise work to a predefined readability KPI before submitting.
- Audit tools that content teams can use to control, review, and measure copy across the website or social media.
- provide marketers & copywriters a benchmark quality over time
- track the readability & engagement of copywriters and their publications
- test & vet new copywriters for clarity.
Fortunately, you can use several tools
The #1 and best tool is the Flesch Reading Ease Index.
The Flesch-Reading Ease score is a tool for measuring the average reading level of English-language content. It works on the English language structure to provide a result. To process the Flesch readability score, sentences & words length are taken into consideration.
Short sentences and small words have a higher score. Long sentences with longer words receive lower scores.
- A score of 100 or more means that the content is quite simple and easy to read.
- A score of 60-70 means that your content is good for intermediate readers at or above an 8th or 9th grade reading level.
- A score of 0-30 is more suited for university work than for the internet.
For isntance, those 2 paragraphs above, score at around a 75 on the Flesch Readability Scale. It means that it falls right in the average range for online content.
There are multiple tools on the internet. Some of them are free others calculate for a fee.
The Flesch-Kincaid measure, derived from the index, scores readability at grade level.
It shows the number of years of education required to easily understand your copy.
With this tool, a lower score means higher readability.
Here are 3 other AI tools to help you with your copy
After the Flesch-Kincaid test, Grammarly is my best “lil’ helper.” Not only it’s an online grammar checker that can search out and repair your grammar and spelling mistakes, but it also looks for plagiarism. Very useful if you want to avoid Google’s penalization…
Grammarly finds and corrects hundreds of typos that would go undetected in your word processor. The tool also offers synonym suggestions to increase your copy’s readability.
If you use Microsoft Word for your grammar and spelling checks, you’ll love Grammarly’s superior proofreading.
The Hemingway App is my third choice… It’s a very popular online editor that improves your writing. It’s easy to read and aesthetically pleasing with all of its bright colors and large font size.
Hemingway will break down and show you the reading time, the number of paragraphs, and the word count. It color codes the prose sentences to highlight problem areas, such as passive voice, adverbs, and difficulty to read.
AutoCrit is made specifically with Fiction Writers in mind. It’s a premium online manuscript editing tool with prices starting at $5 per month. It’s a step above an online grammar or spell checker.
It focuses on the areas of:
- word choice
- pacing & momentum
- strong writing.
It’ll steer you away from the passive voice, adverbs, cliches, and filler words. It will help you tighten up your story by making strong suggestions, but it never “fixes” your writing for you. You have the choice of whether or not to accept a suggestion.
AutoCrit is great to guide your edits in the self-editing stage. It’s best used for developmental edits, rewrites and avoiding common writing no-nos.