Artificial Intelligence and Your Speaking Business
“I see AI and machine learning as augmenting human cognition a la Douglas Engelbart. There will be abuses and bugs, some harmful, so we need to be thoughtful about how these technologies are implemented and used, but, on the whole, I see these as constructive.”– Vint Cerf, Internet Hall of Fame member and Vice President and Chief Internet Evangelist at Google
I belong to the Leadership Breakfast of Maryland (LBMD), which meets monthly. At our latest meeting, the LBMD leader asked the group – “Are People Obsolete?” He was posing the question as to how advances in Artificial Intelligence (AI) affect our leadership.
I thought to myself, “How do advances in AI affect your speaking business?”
In this article, I will define what AI is. Then, I will discuss AI’s advantages and disadvantages for your speaking business. Finally, as speakers, I will talk about what aspects of AI you should adopt and not adopt in your speaking business.
Google’s Oxford Languages Dictionary defines AI as “The theory and development of computer systems able to perform tasks that normally require human intelligence, such as visual perception, speech recognition, decision-making, and translation between languages.”
In the context of your speaking business, the following question is appropriate: “What speaking business tasks will be affected by AI?” That’s a fair question.
All writers are not public speakers, but all public speakers are writers. AI will have an enormous effect on the writing of your speeches, as you will see.
One of the topics in the recent LBMD meeting was the chatbot ChatGPT developed by OpenAI. From Wikipedia:
“ChatGPT (Chat Generative Pre-trained Transformer) is a chatbot launched by OpenAI in November 2022. A chatbot or chatterbot is a software application used to conduct an online chat conversation via text or text-to-speech, in lieu of providing direct contact with a live human agent.”
So, you ask ChatGPT a question, and it answers you in text.
So, what are the advantages and disadvantages of AI for your speaking business?
Advantages and Disadvantages of Chatbots
The following advantages and disadvantages of chatbots are from the website “Advantages and disadvantages of Chatbots: everything you need to know.”
First, the advantages of chatbots for your public speaking business:
“They help you get to know your customers. Conversational chatbots can help you get to know your customers even better. They allow you to find out what their most common questions and needs are, as well as the products or services that interest them. They help you make strategic decisions to improve the experience and offer a more personalized service with each interaction.”
“They are a sales machine. Your chatbot can be the perfect partner to promote new products and send proactive notifications to anticipate the needs of your customers. They can also offer immediate assistance to your potential customers and help speed up the buying decision process.”
“Customer service around the clock. One of the biggest advantages is that chatbots are available 24 hours a day to help customers. In addition, they respond quickly to all the questions they receive. This guarantees two very important things for almost all companies: (1) Satisfied customers with immediate responses and resolutions, (2) Human agents focused on more important tasks and without work overload due to excessive consultations during non-working hours.”
Next, the disadvantages of chatbots for your public speaking business:
“A chatbot is not a human agent. Yes, this may seem obvious. But you have to remember it. A conversational Chatbot is not the same as a human agent, so it does not always understand a query. Its selection of answers may be limited, depending on the information it has uploaded. There may be times when your interactions seem ‘robotic’.”
“There is an implementation time. This is not a disadvantage, but it is worth remembering that, like all improvements implemented in a company, it takes time until everything is 100% operational and shows real results. Deploying, configuring, and learning of the chatbot can take a while.”
“They need maintenance from time to time. Chatbots need constant revisions, maintenance, and optimization in terms of their knowledge base and the way they should communicate with customers. The chatbot needs to be fed new and meaningful data (i.e. content) that can answer customer questions and queries.”
Now that you have a definition of AI and chatbots, should you implement one in your business?
Should You Implement a Chatbot in Your Speaking Business
The following advice is again from the website “Advantages and disadvantages of Chatbots: everything you need to know.”
“In general, conversational chatbots are simpler than other types of chatbots. But, that said, today you can choose friendly and intuitive platforms that do not require a large investment or too much time.”
“The most complex part is done once you teach the chatbot to interact with your customers and have the tone you want; then, you will only have to keep it updated. This is not much compared to everything that the chatbot can do for your company:”
“Improve your customer satisfaction”
“Get valuable data”
“Automating your customer service with conversational chatbots will always be beneficial for your company and customers.”
So, you now know what AI is in general, what chatbots are in particular, the advantages and disadvantages of chatbots, and whether you should implement a chatbot for your speaking business.
It behooves you to see if chatbots can make your speaking business more effective, efficient, and raise revenue.
Call to Action
Think about how chatbots could make your speaking business more effective, efficient, and raise revenue
If you decide to implement chatbots in your speaking business, plan their implementation, implement them, and keep a watchful eye on how they improve your speaking business and raise revenue
Ensure you control your implemented chatbot, so customers don’t receive weird and maybe insulting chatbot messages.
“I think what makes AI different from other technologies is that it’s going to bring humans and machines closer together. AI is sometimes incorrectly framed as machines replacing humans. It’s not about machines replacing humans, but machines augmenting humans. Humans and machines have different relative strengths and weaknesses, and it’s about the combination of these two that will allow human intents and business process to scale 10x, 100x, and beyond that in the coming years.”– Robin Bordoli, former Chief Executive Officer, Figure Eight
Frank DiBartolomeo is a retired U.S. Air Force Lieutenant Colonel and award-winning speaker, presentation and interview skills coach, and Professional Member of the National Speakers Association. He was awarded Toastmasters International’s highest individual award, Distinguished Toastmaster because of his outstanding work in public speaking and leadership.
Frank formed DiBartolomeo Consulting International (DCI), LLC (www.speakleadandsucceed.com) in 2007. The mission of DCI is to help technical professionals to inspire, motivate, and influence their colleagues and other technical professionals by improving their presentation skills, communication, and personal presence. Reach Frank at firstname.lastname@example.org and (703) 509-4424.
Don’t miss Frank DiBartolomeo’s latest book!
“Speak Well and Prosper: Tips, Tools, and Techniques for Better Presentations”
Available now at Amazon.com and BarnesandNoble.com