Can a Robot Write Your Content?

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Can a Robot Write Your Content?

If there’s one thing that SEOs know can’t be done by automated software, it’s content creation. For years now, the three most important rules in search marketing have been “content, content, and content”. Multimillion dollar corporations like Demand Media have sprung up just to feed more content to the insatiable beast that is the internet.  Even black hat marketers have given up on cheap “spun content” strategies that no longer work like they used to.

content creation by machine

Content isn’t just required for our own websites and blogs, it’s necessary for guest blogging, blog network creation and social media marketing as well.

So content is king even still, and we pay big bucks to have readable content produced everyday for all our search marketing needs because, of course, only humans can do that…right?

Nay! As a “for instance”, Chicago-based startup Narrative Science recently developed a technology aptly named “Quill” that is capable of reading charts and data and producing actual, real, readable content through its algorithm that mimics human writing.  Customers of Quill can choose the tone based on individual need. Tweets, headlines, recaps, short and long form articles are not a problem for this ideal and omnicompetent wordsmith. It doesn’t have feelings, is a cheap hire (at $10/500 word article), won’t take Facebook breaks and is more than thrilled to be browsing through sets of data and pages of spreadsheets.

Niche news services like already use the technology to transform their corporate earning statements into easily understandable headlines and paragraphs. So far, most of Narrative Science’s clients are finance or sports based, focusing on data and statistics.

So this begs the question; “If artificially intelligent journalists are more robust and less expensive at combing through data than their human counterparts, why not use robots for content that, in a larger context, will never be shortlisted for a Pulitzer anyway?”  Readers of wires and dailies hardly expect New Yorker style pieces with metaphors and prose. These mechanical writers churn out concise and accurate content — that’s all. That is their designed function. The same technology that Narrative Science developed could feasibly be used by content marketers and SEOs to churn out quality content rapidly and cheaply.

The big question is; “How long before someone actually builds an SEO friendly tool that will?”


Image credit: Robot writer – courtesy © Aleksandr Bedrin –


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Ilan Nass

Lead Marketing Strategist at Fueled

Ilan Nass is the founder of Taktical Solutions, a boutique digital marketing and strategy firm in New York City and ... [Read full bio]

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