By now you’ve probably had at least one experience of being inspired, delighted or shocked by ChatGPT. But, in case this is all new to you, ChatGPT is an Artificial Intelligence (AI) chatbot which uses deep learning algorithms and a massive dataset to respond and even understand complex requests with speed, ease and clarity.
ChatGPT is undoubtedly a huge amount of fun to use (the first question we asked of it in the office was “how do you explain black holes to a 5-year old?” – the response was amazingly good!), but there are three bigger questions that we wanted to answer:
1. Is ChatGPT just the latest fad?
2. How useful is this in our professional lives?
3. Are we going to lose our jobs because of it?
To answer these questions, we’ve been doing plenty of research over the last month or so. Webinars watched, articles read, questions posed to Chat GPT (and each other). And, we’re now reasonably confident that we can answer each of these questions.
ChatGPT’s full name is ChatGPT-3 because it’s the third version available (GPT-1 was in 2018). The first chatbot ever available was Eliza, developed in 1966, over 50 years ago!1 So Chat GPT is not ‘new’, as such. However, what is new is the relatively sudden advancement in its quality of reasoning, reading comprehension and learning capability. It’s developed at a pace way faster than any predictions.
Then there’s the funding. OpenAI, developers of ChatGPT, undertook 6 rounds of funding and raised a colossal $11 billion USD across all rounds. Significantly, Microsoft is a key investor and is already including ChatGPT in its Bing AI search engine2.
Plus, it’s been released for free to the general public so it can be widely experienced. Its popularity is unprecedented: it had more than 100 million users within the first two months of its launch, and more than 13 million daily visitors as of February 20233. With so many users, it will continue to ‘train’ and ‘learn’ and improve at an even faster rate!
Do we think all of this is a fad? CEO of Google, Sundar Pichai, probably says it best:
“Artificial intelligence is one of the most profound things we’re working on as humanity. It is more profound than fire or electricity.”
Without doubt, ChatGPT has huge potential to make market research projects quicker, clearer and better. If you’ve seen the speed at which ChatGPT creates responses, you’ll know why doing quicker work is one huge potential benefit. It can type/write almost as fast as a stenographer but in clear, plain English and it’s literally working on your question as it writes.
Clearer projects are possible due to ChatGPT’s ability to help form innovative, smart hypotheses and questions, meaning that we can be better equipped with advanced AI thinking at all stages of a project.
Quicker, clearer projects lead to better projects. But ChatGPT can also make market research projects better because it frees up more time and brain capacity to allow us – as human experts in our field – to focus on the tougher, more creative tasks involved in all of our work.
Back to the fun part. ChatGPT can bring a lightness to complex, difficult work. It can reinvigorate a tired brain and add new ingredients to a stale brainstorm session.
So, is Chat GPT useful in our professional lives? Our view is, undoubtedly, yes.
We know this has crossed many people’s minds, especially those who write extensively in their role! However, our view is that the news is good for all of us.
Firstly, ChatGPT broadly follows the GIGO (garbage in, garbage out) model. Ask a silly question, you’ll get a potentially useful but mostly silly answer. Conversely, ask a well-thought-through, explicit question based on your expertise and experience, and you’ll get a richer, deeper response that can open your mind to new ideas.
In a nutshell, you really need mastery of a topic to use ChatGPT well.
Additionally, using ChatGPT for maximum effect is a skill in itself. To really get its full benefit, you need to spend time to add further explanation, refine a line of questioning and iterate responses. It’s not just a ‘one and done’ question and answer system.
Despite ChatGPT’s amazing talents, humans must still start each new ChatGPT task, and decide what outputs are appropriate, correct and worthy of sharing. As David Boyle, co-author of PROMPT: A practical guide to brand growth using ChatGPT, says:
"ChatGPT is a helpful partner in the middle."
There are still many unanswered questions about ChatGPT, and it’s far from ‘perfect’. However, to avoid it completely would be like trying to ignore the proverbial elephant in the room. Eventually, its presence will take up so much space that it’ll be difficult to focus anywhere else.
For a no-obligation chat about how our market research services can help you, please contact us today.