#323: Gordon Graham on Writing a White Paper with ChatGPT, Predictions for AI’s Impact on Writers, and How to Pivot as the Technology Improves

A couple of months ago I promised you that I was committing to addressing the topic of AI on this show on a regular basis this year.

This week’s episode is the next installment in this series on AI and the impact of this technology is having (and will have) on the business of content marketing and copywriting.

With me today is my old friend and colleague Gordon Graham. I’ve known Gordon now for nearly 20 years. He’s one of the sharpest writers I know and is perhaps the most prolific white paper writer in the world.

I wanted to bring Gordon on the show because he’s someone who’s taken a deep dive into the world of AI. He’s thought a ton about where we are now and where we’re heading. And he has some really interesting perspectives to share—both positive and negative.

This is a topic we simply cannot ignore, my dear listener. It’s here to stay. And wishing it wouldn’t disrupt our profession is not a productive use of time and energy.

Instead, we need to embrace this technology, learn how to leverage it ethically, think of ways we can move up the value ladder in our respective markets, and start making moves in that direction.

That’s precisely what this discussion is all about. It’s much longer than my usual episode, but Gordon and I had way too much important stuff to address. And I’m confident you’ll find lots of valuable ideas and perspectives inside.

Oh, and here’s the link to the AI survey Gordon mentions in the conversation. It’s a great way to see whether you’re an AI Enthusiast, AI Resister, or AI Pragmatist. The survey takes less than 2 minutes and then based on your type, you get several pages of career advice on how to flourish as a writer in the age of AI.

Make sure to take that survey. I think you’ll find the insights useful.


The notes that follow are a very basic, unedited summary of the show. There’s a lot more detail in the audio version. You can listen to the show using the audio player below. Or you can subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, Amazon Music or wherever you listen to podcasts.

[00:04:59] Chat GPT’s initial response to writing a white paper was negative, but after several inquiries, it agreed to write one. The AI came up with solid reasons why it couldn’t write a white paper and generated a 3500-word draft. However, the quality of the writing was initially subpar, requiring numerous prompts and revisions to improve readability. The final draft achieved a B-minus grade but fell short in meeting the desired readability level.

[00:10:16] Machine-generated text with unreliable sources, limitations of AI.

[00:19:23] Massive AI research, open source is crucial. Flood of AI will impact content providers.

[00:22:45] Agencies shift to value-based pricing, AI impacts.

[00:29:00] AI allows for strategic use in writing.

[00:38:57] Window for prompt engineers may close soon.

[00:41:45] Craft and background knowledge elevate AI writing.

[00:48:55] White papers provide valuable information for businesses.

[00:57:37] AI cannot replace the uniqueness of individuals.

[01:05:44] AI lacks creativity, cultural context, and metaphors.

[01:08:36] Use rhetoric and timeless devices for memorable content.

[01:15:07] Search, download, white paper, humanize content, flood


Learn more about Gordon here:




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