As a long time writer, developer, and Web site designer, Nancy enjoys helping others to plan and reach personal, and professional goals.
The new age of algorithms
Algorithms for Artificial Intelligence
Before what is commonly known as artificial intelligence, we used algorithms as tools to perform certain tasks in data management, advanced mathematics, and research and development of products or concepts. As time went on, more and more programmers became aware of new ways to use these algorithms to predict human behavior, or to mimic human behavior, thus creating programming language to cause our computers and the worldwide Web to perform certain deductive “reasoning”.
In the past several years, the term AI, which used to be an abbreviation for artificially inseminating livestock, such as cows and horses, has become a household term with a new meaning. We are now using those same initials to refer to the algorithms that work to influence people everywhere to buy or buy into a certain product or concept.
How AI Affects Freelance Writers
In this new age of freelancing, which is so heavily influenced by AI, many writers wanting to jumpstart their careers find themselves wondering just who their primary audience will be. Should they write for the search engines so their work will be found? Should they write for the algorithms that track end-user behavior and interests? After all, the goal is to sell your work or to have your work seen by many people. Sadly, many writers are finding that they aren’t really writing for the human reader at all anymore. The primary focus for these individuals is to attract great advertising that the humans will want to click on, thus giving the site owner higher revenue.
Pro’s and Cons of Writing for Algorithms
- Once you find the knack for using the right keywords, right headings, and all of the other basics of great articles, you find that your work gets lots more activity. More views, more engagement, and this translates to more money earned.
- Building on that solid foundation, understanding how artificial intelligence processes data and is able to both predict engagement as well as target specific end users, writers are now able to tailor their books, articles, posts, and even entire niche sites to be friendly and encouraging to a wide variety of advertising programming language.
- All of this results in higher traffic and increased earnings from writing and ad revenue.
- Loss of the human component. Writing solely to attract search engines and ad revenue could be depersonalizing the online content and writing industry as a whole. Writers sometimes forget that traditionally speaking, a writer’s goal has always been to speak to another human being through the written word, through images, signs, and even sound. When we write to please the artificial intelligence programming, the human component becomes lost in the process.
- Regurgitated Knowledge Gets Diluted. For example, let’s take the topic of weight loss. This is a highly competitive subject area for writers. It is also highly popular with consumers. Writers do not want to copy someone else’s work, but since they want to write about the same topic, ethical writers will make a genuine effort to reword a concept so they use different words to describe the same thing. In theory, this is a good thing. However, you can only use a finite number of words to describe something accurately. After a certain point, there is growing concern that the actual facts are being diluted in the effort to say the same thing using different words.
- Loss of Readers. If a writer makes the switch from writing for the human reader to writing for artificial intelligence, the human readers tend to lose interest in their favorite authors because they notice, even at a subconscious level, a difference in the writing. The author’s work begins to resonate with the reader less and less as time goes on. Readers begin to look for a fresh new writer whose work speaks to their heart. The writer’s earnings may go up, but their bounce rate also goes up to a degree.
How to Use Artificial Intelligence to Increase Traffic and Earn More Money
- Be fluent in the language you are using. Especially in the days of artificial intelligence, now more than ever it is vital to write with fluency in whatever language you choose. Search engines can now spot you a mile away if your content is not fluent in the language chosen.
- Work to become a good writer. This includes being able to fully express ideas using a wide vocabulary, understanding synonyms and antonyms, verb usage, and adjectives, and using those word forms accurately. But don’t stop there! Read and re-read your content. Do you fully describe an action or procedure? Are you using your words to create a visual image for the reader? Is the tone of the message appropriate for the intended audience of humans as well as algorithms? Finally, is the information you are putting forth accurate and presented in a way that flows from one point to the next in a comfortable fashion?
- Take time to do the research about your topic as well as the end location of the subject matter. Things that are appropriate for one venue may not be right for another. For example, you wouldn’t want to try to sell your decorating book in a store that sells travel trailers, unless your book is about decorating RV’s. While you may sell a few copies, you would probably sell a lot more copies of a book about decorating travel trailers in that particular location. You could write a book about all the ways to decorate a fish tank and place that book, or article in a store or Web site that sells tropical fish.
- Reflect on the types of ads that will appear on the same page as your article, or book sales location. This really cannot be stressed enough. Say you write that book about decorating, and decide to publish it on Amazon. What other book titles are likely to come up when a shopper types in the key words in your title or subtitle? Do you have your book in the right main category, as well as subcategories? Does your title reflect the popular and current terms people are using to search for books in that category? Beware of outdated terminology!
- Take the time it takes to become knowledgeable about your writing career, the tools of the trade, marketing techniques, and things that are of importance to human beings. Writing is a skill. It takes time and effort to develop any skill, and freelance writing is no different. There are many elements involved in the publishing of any article or book. Learn to work with others in a team effort to produce quality work. The more you learn, the more you will find your own specific style and voice that works for you in a way that is unique, well balanced for the search engines, algorithms, and for the human reader as well.
Thank you for reading this article about increasing your traffic and readership by writing for both human and non-human audiences. I truly hope it has been helpful. I have been writing online since the relative early days, and have watched this freelance industry grow and change. It is both humbling and exciting to have been even a small part of the process. If you are considering a career in writing, you may visit my profile page for more information, or place questions and comments right here. I look forward to hearing from others, and answering any questions you may have.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2019 Nancy Owens
Nancy Owens (author) from USA on June 21, 2019:
Thank you Brenda, for the kind words.
BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on June 20, 2019:
It is so sad one cannot just write anymore.
To touch others with heartfelt emotions.