A Revolution In Online Research

Where should I promote my newsletter? In the “old days”, to figure that out, I’d have to...

Where should I promote my newsletter?

In the “old days”, to figure that out, I’d have to:

  1. Navigate to Google;

  2. Search a bunch of different keyword combinations to find popular websites that cater to a similar target audience;

  3. Search through many different links to narrow in on candidates that match my criteria;

  4. Look further into those candidates to try to understand if and to whom they are popular.

That’s not terribly complicated, but it does take time to do. Thankfully, there’s now an alternative that enables me to bypass much of that work.

ChatGPT (or similar) can do all of it for me. Within seconds, I can get a list of candidate websites along with a summary of why they’re a good fit, how popular they are (to the extent that that information is available), and links to each site.

This is just one of the many time-saving things that ChatGPT can do that has transformed my search behaviour and is making me less and less reliant on Google.

At the end of the day, if we’re being honest, it is still a kind of search. The product, any AI chatbot, is very similar to Google in terms of purpose in this case. They both help me find what I’m looking for. But the experience with AI is so much faster, better and customised to my needs that it is rapidly changing a behaviour I’ve had for more than a decade.

I do have to note, in fairness, that AI chatbots still need work on their ability to surface the most relevant and up-to-date information. But they are very rapidly improving and have by many standards already surpassed the “good enough” mark. Excellence is on the horizon.

In the meantime, here are a few more research-related use cases for AI chatbots:

1. Writing opinion pieces backed by data

Say I have an idea for an article/ newsletter/ social media post about a specific topic. It would be great if I could reinforce the validity of my point of view with some cold, hard data. Searching for numbers on Google can now be replaced with a prompt like “give me recent statistics/ trends on the topic of […]”

2. Research for sales presentations

You can ask your chatbot of choice for a summary of info available for a given business. Similarly to the previous examples, you can get statistics relevant to your industry or the point you’re trying to make. You can ask for examples of challenges faced by companies in your target audience or industry.

3. Researching PR or marketing opportunities

Similar to my initial example, you can ask for any kind of opportunity that is relevant for you, whether that is a list of potential partners, news outlets that cover your topics, influencers, podcasters, etc.

In essence, it all comes down to this:

Think about all of the different things that you would normally research yourself, and ask a chatbot to do the heavy lifting for you instead.

This week’s recommendation

I recently watched, and really enjoyed, this interview with Barbara Corcoran of Shark Tank fame. It’s a great discussion and effectively a practical masterclass in sales and how to capture people’s attention.

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