Humanising Brands in an AI World

Written by

Emma Birch


Are robots really coming for us?

The rise of AI platforms such as Dall-E and ChatGPT in recent months has seen many creatives consider whether these tools are here to make our lives easier or if they are on track to replace us. These days, a simple online prompt can generate everything, from social post copy to the visuals that go along with it.

For a recent roundtable discussion, we invited an AI generator to write us an introduction. While you could argue what it put together was fairly impressive and didn’t sound too out of sorts, even with a human voice delivering it you could tell it lacked personality. A classic example of all the right buzzwords, but without emotion. For us, we believe authenticity is the key to true human connection, and that is still much harder for an AI to replicate.

Whilst working with a number of our clients, we regularly perform audits. Whether that’s brand or social channel based, we review and analyse what’s working and what isn’t, supporting our clients to forge new ways of engaging with their audiences. In a post-COVID world, we know that when brands humanise their online presence, their engagement increases. Social media is going back to its roots. People are using these platforms to socialise again. So, it makes sense that when engaging with a brand online, we want to feel like we’re dealing with someone human on the other side of the screen.

Research shows that 95% of our purchasing behaviours are subconscious decisions.

Humans are emotive beings, not logical ones, and now more than ever we crave that sense of connection. Not just with each other, but with the brands we value as well.

The Importance of Authenticity

Authenticity isn’t just limited to what your brand says, but how you say it; how you present your products, values, and services to the world. Posts with images that include people allow our brains to recognise a similarity between ourselves and the information we’re consuming. Typically, even posts that only show a part of a body (like a hand) perform 29% better than images of a full person and 10% better than a post with no people at all.

And with posts containing imagery having the power to increase brand recall by 65%, making sure that image is authentic to your brand’s personality and matches that tone of voice makes that even more effective.

When it comes to making sure your brand maintains that human connection, consider your brand as a person; it has its own personality, its own way of talking and doing things and that personality should be a clear connection to your business values and mission. By maintaining an authentic, consistent tone of voice, people can form a more meaningful relationship with you. And just like with friends and family, those more meaningful connections are much more likely to last, in a time where attention spans are growing ever shorter.

As we move towards a future where the metaverse and digital engagement grow louder, remember, AI can certainly help but it can’t replace good, emotive copywriting. Emotion, empathy and even humour. These ‘fluy’ qualities are all traits that make your brand truly unique, and right now, AI replicates that.

Pros of AI copywriting:

They’re great for brainstorming – AI tools can be a good starting point when trying to flesh out a new idea, getting that first draft in early that can be built out into something more personal (which is perfect for writers-block days!).

They can help you improve your SEO – using AI tools less for copywriting and more for those top level jobs helps streamline productivity. Let an AI tool scowler the web for you and provide a concise list of keywords for higher search engine rankings.

Aids quality control – having AI generate help you write content can correct mistakes as you make them, so there’s one less review stage to go through. It can also sometimes predict what you’re trying to say, and sometimes help you phrase things more effectively.

Cons of AI copywriting:

It’s (ironically) nothing new – anything generated by these tools is created by scouring existing data, which means nothing new or original can come out of it. If you want truly innovative ideas, that has to come from a person.

You risk devaluing your content – Google’s helpful content update last year set out to prioritise content ‘written by people, for people’ in search engine results. Human-written content that provides a satisfying experience is destined to outperform purely AI-generated content.

It always has the potential to go wrong – although it’s fairly reliable, AI is after all leaving your content at the mercy of an app, and we all know apps aren’t always reliable. Crashes, random content, hints of plagiarism… it’s a lot to leave up to the AI Gods!

Find out more about our Digital Experience expertise here.


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