How Does Your Ad Agency Use AI?

April 17, 2023 | blog | By Mike Sullivan

It wasn’t too long ago that TikTok set the world ablaze with its insane adoption rate, pulling in 100 million users in just nine months. In doing so, TikTok dethroned the reigning adoption King, Instagram, which took 30 months to achieve the same success. Now enter ChatGPT. It took the AI natural language processor just eight weeks to amass 100 million users — without the benefit of an app! Do we need more evidence for the quickening? It makes the early days of the Internet look quaint. Check out Bill Gates as he draws laughs on Letterman with his explanation of a new-fangled technology called the Internet.

Nobody’s laughing at ChatGPT. In fact, a lot of folks are in fear for their jobs. According to Goldman Sachs, something like 300 million jobs around the globe could be displaced through automation thanks to AI platforms like ChatGPT. AI is already being used by the ad industry on the analytics side of the business to juice performance in data collection and analysis, targeting, and campaign optimization. But the leap to the creative side is new, and it’s been jarring. I wrote about my concern that AI is coming for the creative class in November of last year. Since then, we’ve been digging in on it at the agency.

As we’re learning more about how AI will shape the way we create, we’re moving past fear and loathing.

Like most of our ad agency peers, we’re still trying to get our arms around ChatGPT, and each day turns up new insights about how we might use it for client work. But we’re not using the technology for client work just yet. The truth is our experiences so far look a lot like the early days of the Internet. We’re in the dabbling phase with mastery somewhere off on the horizon. Just how far off is anyone’s guess.

Our team has been experimenting with ChatGPT over the past couple months, using it like a writing partner for thought-starters and as an accelerator for content and copy development. It’s very useful for this purpose. It comes in handy for cranking out blogs for SEO, fleshing out social content, generating basic radio scripts, building decks, and so forth. But so far, we haven’t had much luck getting it to generate new and novel ideas. Score one for the humans!

No matter how clever our prompts, ChatGPT has yet to spit out anything we’d be pleased to show a client without significant human improvement.

ChatGPT itself offers no defense and explains the limitation this way: “ChatGPT is constrained in its capacity to come up with fresh and inventive thoughts because it is based on a statistical strategy to language modeling known as “transformer” models. These models are taught utilizing a confined measure of information, implying that the yield is restricted to what it has taken in from the information. Thus, the outcome will in general be not very imaginative or inventive.”

Of course, this is bound to change as the machine improves, and it surely will.

MIKE SULLIVAN is president and CEO at LOOMIS, the country’s leading challenger brand advertising agency and a top Dallas advertising agency for digital, social, mobile and user experience. For more about challenger branding, advertising, and marketing, leadership, culture, and other inspirations that will drive your success, visit our blog BARK! The Voice of the Underdog and catch up on all of our posts.

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Mike Sullivan

President at LOOMIS, the country’s leading challenger brand advertising agency


We challenge underdog brands to think differently. We help them find their voice, and urge them to blaze new trails to make sure they stand out from the pack. Whether you need an agency of record or support on a project, we are here to help you win.