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How to Use ChatGPT for Content Writing

ChatGPT - the revolutionary tool that's taking the industry by storm. As an advanced AI-powered language model, ChatGPT can generate content in record time, making it a hot topic in the world of content marketing. 

But what exactly is ChatGPT, and how can you use it to streamline your content creation process? 

In this article, we'll show you how to make the most of this cutting-edge AI powered tool, including practical tips, strategies, and common pitfalls you want to avoid when using ChatGPT to write content. 

So, get ready to discover how to use ChatGPT in writing and keep up with the ever-increasing demand for fresh and engaging content.

What you will learn

  • ChatGPT is an advanced AI-powered language model that uses deep learning algorithms to generate human-like text.
  • How to use ChatGPT to generate article outlines, catchy headlines and meta descriptions, ad copy, summaries, introductions, and conclusions and get your creative juices flowing.
  • The limitations of ChatGPT as an AI writing tool and the cases when you shouldn’t rely on it.

What is ChatGPT?

ChatGPT is a cutting-edge artificial intelligence (AI) language model designed to process and analyze massive amounts of text data and generate human-like text responses.

ChatGPT stands for "Generative Pre-trained Transformer," which refers to its use of a transformer architecture that has been pre-trained on a massive corpus of text data.

ChatGPT relies on that data to generate relevant and cohesive text, making it a powerful tool for tasks that require sophisticated language processing capabilities.

There are two versions of ChatGPT out there, GPT-3.5 and GPT-4. 

The first version, GPT-3.5 is accessible to everyone for free, and it can handle simple tasks. The second version, GPT-4, comes with more advanced capabilities, such as the ability to analyze images, voice, and links. This version is only accessible to paid users.

In November 6, 2023, OpenAI announced the latest update of ChatGPT, which is the biggest update the AI model has undergone since its launch. There are two main things you should know about it:

  • ChatGPT-4 Turbo: This is the latest version of GPT-4. This updated model offers greater capabilities, including a 128K context window, allowing for the processing of text equivalent to over 300 pages in a single prompt. 
  • The introduction of GPTs: These are mini chat applications that serve a specific purpose, like a travel assistant. Think of them as a ChatGPT application customized for your own requirements.

Both these features are available to Plus and Enterprise members. 

Can ChatGPT be used for content writing?

While ChatGPT is not a content writing tool, it can be used to assist in the content writing process. ChatGPT is particularly useful for conducting research and generating new ideas and outlines, as it can quickly come up with answers and provide suggestions.

We’ll go into more detail on the use cases of ChatGPT in content writing in the next section. But before we do, it’s important to know its limitations for creating quality content.

ChatGPT is not designed to produce content optimized for search engines. So you will have to research and implement keywords for on-page SEO. Moreover, ChatGPT may generate repetitive ideas and phrases. You will need to provide detailed writing prompts to create content that meets your requirements. 

Therefore, it might not be the best tool for creating long-form SEO content. For long-form content, use AI content generators that are designed to write articles for search engines - we’ll dive more into that below.

A more apt use of ChatGPT for content writing is to use the tool for short-form content like ads and landing page copy, social media posts, and even email subject lines. 

Also, note that the content that ChatGPT generates may not always be entirely accurate or appropriate. Its knowledge is limited to what has been published in the media and on the internet - up to September 2021 for the users of the free version (GPT 3.5) and up to April 2023 for the ones with access to GPT-4. 

In any case, you should review the content generated by ChatGPT or any AI tool to ensure its quality and accuracy before publishing it.

Does Google penalize AI-generated content?

No, Google does not penalize AI generated content. So you will not be violating any Google policy by using AI tools like ChatGPT to create content. In fact, many big companies, such as Buzzfeed are openly embracing the use of AI writing software. 

Google has a welcoming stance on the use of AI-generated content. What Google penalizes is low-quality content that aims to manipulate search engines - regardless of it being written by humans or AI.

If you are still adamant about avoiding AI detection, AI content writing tools like Surfer AI can create articles that pass content detection tools.

Turning on the anti-AI feature will tell Surfer AI to write content that appears human written to content detection algorithms. 

Now that we’ve dispelled this myth, we can dive into how you can leverage ChatGPT for content writing. 

8 ways to use ChatGPT for content writing

ChatGPT has several applications for research, summaries, and even data analysis. In marketing, it’s primarily used to write blog posts, social media captions, and short-form marketing material. 

Here are 8 ways to use ChatGPT to write content.

1. Generate article outlines

ChatGPT can be used to generate article outlines by providing suggestions for subtopics or sections based on given blog post ideas. For instance, you can prompt ChatGPT to “Generate an outline for an article on [insert your article topic].” 

The more details you give in the prompt, the better the output will be. You can add more about the general direction of your article, the intended audience, and even some keywords you want to use.

In the screenshot below, you can see how we’ve used this approach to ask ChatGPT to create an outline for a blog post on “How to use ChatGPT for content writing”.

And here is the outline it generated for me:

However, as you can now tell by reading this article, this is not the final outline we’ve based this article on. Nevertheless, it can be a starting point. 

Review the suggestions provided by ChatGPT and select the ones that are most relevant or interesting. You may need to modify or combine some of the suggestions to create a cohesive outline. You can always tell ChatGPT to write a different version or to include specific information.

2. Write headlines and meta descriptions

You can use ChatGPT to provide suggestions for attention-grabbing headlines and informative meta descriptions based on a given topic or keyword. Let’s see this in action. 

Start by defining your main topic or keyword. Then, ask ChatGPT to generate a list of potential headlines for that keyword. 

For example, if you’re writing a blog post on the ‘benefits of Google Ads’, you can ask ChatGPT to “Write 5 headlines for a blog post on the benefits of Google Ads”. You can further refine your prompt by giving it details about the article. Here’s an example:

And here’s the response. These headlines can help jumpstart your creativity. 

You can follow a similar approach to writing meta descriptions with ChatGPT. First you ask.

Here we have 5 meta descriptions that fit our criteria. 

Telling ChatGPT to generate more than one output can help you choose the one that best fits your content needs. And it gives you the opportunity to mix and match.

3. Summarize blog posts and URLs

ChatGPT can be used to summarize text by utilizing its natural language processing capabilities. The model can read and analyze the text of a blog post, research paper, and even books to identify the main points and key takeaways.

It can then use this information to generate a concise summary, highlighting the most important information and presenting it in a clear and digestible format. 

The free version of ChatGPT has a prompt character limit of up to 2048 characters, so you cannot copy and paste entire articles and ask the AI to analyze them. The new GPT-4 Turbo can handle around 300 pages of text in one prompt.

One of the benefits of GPT-4 is its ability to access the internet through Bing search. So you can directly ask it to summarize a webpage, such as in the example below.

The chatbot will take a moment to go online to visit the page and create a summary of it for you.

This feature is only available to paid ChatGPT members. GPT 3.5 cannot access the internet to read external webpages. 

As you can see, you will get an error message and some tips to get around this limitation.

4. Draft introductions and conclusions

ChatGPT can assist you in drafting introductions and conclusions by providing you with suggestions based on the topic and purpose of your articles. 

You may start by asking ChatGPT to “Write an introduction/conclusion for a blog post on the benefits of Google Ads”. However, know that with this type of prompt ChatGPT is more likely to give you a generic output, you know, the dreaded “in the world of digital marketing” and how “Google Ads is growing at an exponential rate”.

For better results, you should give ChatGPT more information regarding the information covered in your article, your article’s angle, purpose, intended audience, and writing tone. 

The picture shows what this type of prompt may look like.

And here you can see the response we got.

You can further refine your prompts by asking ChatGPT to follow a specific structure such as the PAS approach (problem, agitation, solution), to use an anecdote, humor, or a different hook. 

Apply the same approach to asking ChatGPT to write a conclusion for your article. Remember that the quality of the output will generally be as good as the quality of your input. 

5. Aid keyword research

ChatGPT is a language model trained to generate text based on prompts given to it, and it can be used to generate new ideas and suggestions for keywords and topics. Even though, it does not have the same level of precision and accuracy as dedicated keyword research tools.

In addition, ChatGPT's output may not always be relevant or useful for your specific industry or niche. It may also generate some irrelevant or off-topic suggestions that could potentially harm your SEO efforts if you were to use them in your content.

With that in mind, here’s how to use ChatGPT to generate keyword ideas and identify content ideas. Once you’ve identified the topic you want to research, formulate a prompt that is specific to your topic.

For example, you could ask ChatGPT "What are some related keywords for [topic]?" or "What are some long-tail variations of [keyword]?"

Here’s an example.

This is a good place to start with your keyword research. However, it should be used in conjunction with other keyword research tools and techniques to ensure a comprehensive and accurate keyword strategy.

There is not much information that ChatGPT provides on the keyword volume, difficulty, or the search intent behind keywords. A dedicated tool like Surfer’s Keyword Research tool can help you generate a data-driven content plan based on all the above factors: search behavior, monthly keyword volume, and keyword difficulty.

Surfer can also identify a pillar page, as well as supporting pages for your content hub. 

Something that ChatGPT can’t do.

6. Use writing prompts

ChatGPT can use writing prompts to help you write better content by generating ideas and inspiring your creativity. The platform can generate writing prompts in different forms, such as questions, statements, or scenarios.

These prompts can help you brainstorm new content ideas or generate transition words for your article.

To use writing prompts with ChatGPT, you can start by providing a general topic or theme for your content.

For example, if you are writing a blog post about “digital advertising”, you could ask ChatGPT to provide some writing prompts related to that topic.

You can use the prompts as a starting point for your writing, or you can incorporate them into your content in different ways, such as by addressing them directly or using them as inspiration for your ideas.

This can be a helpful way to use ChatGPT to brainstorm ideas and overcome writer’s block.

7. Compose ad copy

As an AI-powered language model, ChatGPT has been trained on a vast corpus of text, including marketing and advertising copy. 

To use ChatGPT to compose ad copy, you can start by providing some basic information about your product or service, such as its features, benefits, target audience, and unique selling proposition (USP).

You can also specify the type of ad you want to create, such as a social media ad, search engine ad, or display ad.

Based on training data and on this information, ChatGPT can generate ad copy ideas, headlines, taglines, and even full ad scripts.

Start by telling ChatGPT about your product and brand. Also tell it what you want to achieve and how it can help you. The more details the better. Here’s an example:

You ask and it will deliver. 

You can then review the suggestions provided by ChatGPT and modify them as necessary to fit your brand's voice and tone.

8. Edit your content

You can also ask ChatGPT to edit your content, e.g. to make it more concise, add examples, check for grammatical errors, and so on.

In the example below we ask the chatbot to “Edit the following text to make it more concise and engaging”. You can then copy and paste the text into the chat.

Here’s the response. 


Keep in mind that the free version of ChatGPT doesn’t allow you to input large amounts of text, so you’ll need to break down your text into smaller parts.

Meanwhile, with dedicated AI writing tools like Surfer, there is a lot more you can do in terms of editing. Instruction can range from paraphrasing to switching your tone of voice, adding links and examples, and so on. 

Just highlight a paragraph and tell Surfy, our AI editing assistant what to do. 

Here’s a snapshot of the content Surfy generated for me. 

You can then accept the newly written content, or start over.  

ChatGPT alternative for writing long form SEO content

There are better alternatives to ChatGPT you can use for writing long-form SEO content. Surfer AI, for example, can write content in minutes that is designed to rank for your target keyword.

You can instruct Surfer on the type of article to write.

  1. Choose from Blog Post, Product Roundup and Single Product Review
  2. Specify your tone of voice from 13 voices
  3. Enable the anti AI detector to pass AI content detection (optional)

Enable Advanced Settings to provide custom instructions for your content.

You can include URLs and provide detailed information in the Custom knowledge tab, that you want Surfer AI to use to generate content.

And of course, choose your organic competitors for Surfer to research existing content on the target keyword.

Surfer AI will then create an outline for you to review and edit.

When you're satisfied with the outline, hit Let's write.

Surfer will use your instructions to research and write a new article for your topic that is optimized for search engines.

You can review and edit the article to your liking.

Use the Terms panel on the right to review relevant keywords and phrases before you hit publish.

Content you shouldn’t use ChatGPT for

Certain topics require the nuance, expertise, and ethical consideration that only a human can provide. So it’s not advised to use ChatGPT to write content in areas like health, finance, or legal matters.

Here’s what the co-founder of ChatGPT had to say on X, previously Twitter regarding this:

ChatGPT can’t replace the expertise of an expert. Given the potential inaccuracies that ChatGPT may produce, it's best to leave such tasks to professionals who are qualified to give advice.

Key takeaways

  • ChatGPT is an advanced AI language model designed to understand natural language and generate human-like responses to prompts or questions.
  • ChatGPT can be a helpful resource for generating ideas and streamlining the writing process. Nevertheless, it's not a substitute for human creativity and expertise.
  • To ensure that the content generated by ChatGPT is accurate and appropriate, it's important to fact-check and edit the content. 
  • ChatGPT has limitations when it comes to creating specialized or technical content in fields such as finance and medicine. In these cases, it’s best to rely on human experts.
  • By leveraging its strengths and working within its limitations, you can use ChatGPT to improve your content creation process and produce high-quality content that resonates with your audience.

Conclusion

ChatGPT is a game-changing AI writing tool for anyone involved in content creation. In this article, we've explored some practical tips and strategies for using ChatGPT to create high-quality content, including how to fine-tune your prompts, how to use the tool for research and idea generation, and how to evaluate the output. We've also discussed some of the limitations of ChatGPT, such as its lack of creativity and potential inaccuracies.

As with any tool, using ChatGPT effectively requires practice and experimentation. However, by following the tips and strategies outlined in this article, you'll be well on your way to produce high-quality content with ease and efficiency. 

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Screenshot of Surfer SEO Content Editor interface, displaying the 'Essential Content Marketing Metrics' article with a content score of 82/100. The editor highlights sections like 'Key Takeaways' and offers SEO suggestions for terms such as 'content marketing metrics