Here’s the situation: You’re the CEO of a climate-focused startup, and money is always tight. 

You’re looking for that first customer to prove your concept, but you need to hire another engineer (or two) to finish your prototype. 

You know you need a website built to market the company, but you can’t afford to hire a marketing agency or even a mid-level market manager. A marketing strategy? Positioning? Digital media? That’s something to be covered by the next capital raise. 

In the interim, maybe you should look at the new artificial intelligence tool, ChatGPT, to handle those marketing tasks? It contains the entirety of human knowledge and writes so intuitively no reader can tell it wasn’t written by a human being. Best of all, it’s $20/month, a price any startup can afford.

Marketing Problem Solved. Or Is It? 

I’ve read the media reports. This generation of artificial intelligence is supposed to push lawyers, marketers, speech writers, and code writers (among others) to the dustbin of history along with chimney sweeps, horse and buggy drivers, and newspaper criers. 

Curious to learn if I needed to start preparing for a new career, I went straight to the disrupter of my industry to find out if I was in immediate danger or if I could stave off buying a cheaper brand of tuna for my cat for the foreseeable future. 

                 Me: “Could I replace my marketing staff with ChatGPT?”

                ChatGPT: “As an AI language model, ChatGPT is designed to assist with basic communication and automated responses. It cannot replace the creativity, innovation, and strategic planning that comes with having a dedicated marketing staff. ChatGPT can certainly help with certain aspects of marketing such as basic customer service, responding to frequently asked questions, and even generating product descriptions, but it cannot replace the key insights and ideas that a human marketing team can offer. While ChatGPT can certainly be an asset to any marketing team, its abilities are limited compared to the                  expertise and experience of a human marketing staff.”

There it is: Grammatically correct, and straight from the algorithm’s voice box.

Why Is Marketing Important For Climate Tech Companies?

Painful as it may be to the scientists and engineers reading this, the best technology isn’t guaranteed to win. 

For your climate tech company to be successful, it has to solve a problem for a specific set of people, industries, or governments. If they don’t know a solution exists to their problem, your technology will sit on a shelf, no matter how many patents you’ve earned. 

Beyond knowing a solution exists, your audience needs to connect with your brand story. Why? Because if competitors don’t already exist, they soon will. If you don’t want to be stuck competing solely on price, which will diminish your profits, your company must have a unique value proposition that no other company can match. That’s how you build brand loyalty, and that’s why your brand charges a premium price.

Can ChatGPT Write A Climate Tech Website?

So, ChatGPT can’t replace a team, but could it complete a task? I asked the platform to write the copy for a climate tech website, and here’s what it returned in under a minute

Impressive, no? I couldn’t write that in an entire afternoon. But does speed equate with success? 

There are three metrics I use to judge whether a marketing effort is successful:

  1. Is the (website in this case) true about the company and its ethos?
  2. Is the website meaningful for its intended audience? Would they care, and does it solve their problem?
  3. Does it establish the company as unique in its sphere? That is, can anyone else say the same thing about their product/technology? 

If you feel ChatGPT met those three criteria, congratulations. You just saved your startup valuable time and money. 

If AI, for all of its potential, failed those litmus tests, then contact me and let’s build a brand worthy of your climate-focused mission.

CleanTech Focus