ChatGPT, the conversational artificial intelligence (AI) developed by OpenAI and backed by Microsoft, has caused a simultaneous flurry of excitement and trepidation since its release last November. Amassing 1 million users in its first five days, it reached 100 million active users two months after its launch, setting a record for the fastest user growth in a web platform.
Today, it’s been adopted by over 200 companies across industries – from healthcare and education to sales and marketing. Indeed, automation and AI are becoming integral to many business functions, including managing redundant administrative tasks, improving business outcomes, and streamlining communications and productivity. Recent research has found that the average number of artificial intelligence capabilities that companies employ has doubled in just five years, from 2018 to 2023.
Now, with ChatGPT’s generative AI capabilities, more businesses are starting to explore the tool, looking for novel ways to leverage it to their advantage.
The Technology Behind ChatGPT
Until recently, AI chatbots could only produce responses based on the specific datasets that they had been trained upon. But over the past several years, AI and machine learning models, such as ChatGPT, have started to understand the sentiment and context behind words and phrases. In other words, they’re able to not only tap into a vast amount of vocabulary and information, but also understand words in context.
ChatGPT in particular was trained with a plethora of diverse data, including books, articles, and conversations, to understand various topics and contexts. It was built upon various natural language processing (NLP) algorithms and underlying models that constitute a class known as large language models (LLM), primarily the GPT-3 model. The bot uses OpenAI’s GPT-3.5 language technology, which is an upgrade of the GPT-3 model released in 2020.
Over a period of several weeks, these models read through millions of pieces of text and got trained with datasets varying across domains. This is ultimately what enables ChatGPT to generate in-depth, human-like prose in response to questions, tell stories, produce essays, and even write code in a matter of seconds. It’s also what helps it mimic speech patterns while dispatching knowledge like an encyclopedia.
Part of the concern with AI tools like ChatGPT, however, is that it will wipe out jobs due to its ability to complete tasks faster and better than humans. For instance, one study noted that ChatGPT performed better in a mock medical exam than human candidates. The AI tool was awarded a score of 77.2 percent by examiners, compared to the 73.7 average human score. Similarly, it took ChatGPT a median time of 2.54 minutes to complete each section of the exam – far quicker than the total of 10 minutes per station allowed. What’s even more alarming is that not all examiners were able to discern between human and ChatGPT responses.
Industries Exploring ChatGPT
ChatGPT is already being used in many settings for both fun and functional purposes. For instance, people have written poems with it, created opening messages for dating apps, and answered silly questions. In the business landscape, many companies are exploring how to use ChatGPT to grow their bottom line and enhance experiences for their customers. Below are three specific use cases.
ChatGPT has the potential to fundamentally transform the finance industry through personalized financial advice, fraud prevention, and improved customer service. According to reports, within three months of the beta version of ChatGPT being opened to the public, bankers from all over the world were feeding it text prompts about niche subjects – from employee retention credits to gamification of deposits.
Financial institutions can utilize ChatGPT to analyze a customer’s financial situation, including their income, expenses, and savings, to provide personalized financial advice. This might include everything from simple tips on how to save money to more complex investment strategies.
ChatGPT can also be used to help with fraud prevention. By analyzing a customer’s behavior and transaction history, ChatGPT can identify patterns and anomalies that might indicate fraud. This can help financial institutions protect both the institution and customer by preventing fraud before it occurs.
Marketing & Sales
ChatGPT can be utilized by marketing and sales teams to develop distinctive and appealing ad copy that entices customers. ChatGPT can also be used to create engaging emails, social media posts, and scripts. For instance, Wistia, a video marketing platform, has reported using ChatGPT to write promotional video scripts. Apart from being used to generate written content, ChatGPT can also augment content already written to give it a different tone by softening or professionalizing the language.
ChatGPT is particularly beneficial for SEO, as it can analyze large blocks of human-generated textual data and provide an analysis consisting of the most searched keywords. Furthermore, it can be used to automate ad targeting and placement, ensuring that ads are served to the right audience at the right time.
ChatGPT can be used in the healthcare space to provide patients with a more efficient and personalized experience. In fact, according to this piece, 17 companies have already integrated ChatGPT into their operations for diverse applications such as health management, coaching, and medical scribe tools.
For instance, because ChatGPT excels at summarizing information, it can assist physicians by providing a summarization of patient records in order to get a holistic view of the patient’s family medical history.
Similarly, by informing ChatGPT of a patient’s vitals and symptoms, it can help healthcare providers to quickly and accurately identify potential health issues and provide suggested treatment or next steps. Furthermore, it can be used by patients to answer simple medical questions, provide guidance on preventive measures and lifestyle changes, and provide information on medical treatments.
The Future of ChatGPT
Sentiments regarding generative AI such as ChatGPT remain mixed. Some see its potential to revolutionize business operations, while others worry about ethical implications and job displacement, pointing to a report from Goldman Sachs that suggested some 300 million full-time jobs could be impacted by systems like ChatGPT.
However, a recent MIT study found that workers were 37 percent more productive using ChatGPT. Another recent study from researchers at Stanford University and the National Bureau of Economic Research found a 14 percent productivity increase when customer service agents for a retail company used generative AI-based conversational assistants.
Even so, as users have documented, ChatGPT is not infallible; it sometimes gets things wrong. Even OpenAI acknowledges this, writing: “ChatGPT sometimes writes plausible-sounding but incorrect or nonsensical answers.” This can be particularly dangerous when it comes to things like medical or financial advice.
While we’ve only just scratched the surface of AI, it’s hard to deny that ChatGPT has the potential to revolutionize businesses by making it easier and more efficient for them to operate and compete in today’s ever-changing digital world. As the technology that underpins these generative AI solutions continue to evolve and improve, we’ll likely witness even more companies adopting them.