Using AI for Marketing – Should You Do It? - The Fair Housing Institute, Inc.

Using AI for Marketing – Should You Do It?

In the dynamic world of property management, technology has become an invaluable tool for streamlining operations and enhancing customer experiences. Artificial intelligence (AI) has emerged as a powerful ally, promising to revolutionize marketing strategies and resident interactions. However, in our pursuit of innovation and efficiency, it is crucial for property management professionals to approach AI with caution, especially from a fair housing perspective. This article delves into the critical considerations that property managers must keep in mind when harnessing AI for marketing, emphasizing the need to uphold fair housing principles and avoid inadvertently perpetuating discriminatory practices.

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

How could someone use AI (such as ChatGPT) for marketing purposes?

From the perspective of property management professionals, it becomes apparent that AI tools like ChatGPT and similar products offer a convenient means for companies to automate various aspects of their advertising and marketing efforts. These AI solutions can assist in creating advertisements and marketing content for social media—among other applications—thereby streamlining operational processes and expediting the production of such materials without heavy human involvement.

What is the danger of using this method?

When considering the potential hazards associated with delegating marketing responsibilities to AI systems, it becomes evident that AI relies on data drawn from various sources. These can include a company’s website and other marketing materials. It then amalgamates this information to generate marketing blurbs and advertising statements, which may inadvertently carry housing implications. These implications are significant in light of agencies actively monitoring housing advertisements for potential violations, some of which may not be immediately apparent. One example involves the use of terms like “adult housing” or “active adult living.” This could inadvertently imply a lack of accommodations for families with children. It is essential to exercise caution when entrusting AI with marketing tasks to avoid such unintended consequences.

The utilization of language that might deter families, individuals of specific national origins, races, or those with certain disabilities raises concerns about potential violations of fair housing laws. It should be noted that AI programs typically lack the nuanced understanding and legal expertise required to discern such sensitive issues. These considerations underscore the risks associated with entrusting AI to generate content that may inadvertently infringe upon fair housing regulations.

If someone wants to use AI to write content for marketing, what fair housing best practices should they follow?

While AI in marketing and advertising is not inherently discouraged, as it can streamline processes within a company efficiently, a cautious approach is needed. A good best practice is that a designated individual within the company, particularly within the compliance department, review the content before publication.

This proactive step ensures that the AI-generated material does not inadvertently contain any elements that could pose fair housing issues. Furthermore, if a third-party company is engaged to create AI content, it is essential to either secure strong assurances from the third party regarding the incorporation of fair housing safeguards or insist on reviewing the content personally before its release.

As property management professionals navigate the ever-evolving landscape of AI-powered marketing, it is essential to remember that innovation should always be coupled with responsibility. By approaching AI with a keen awareness of fair housing considerations, property managers can harness its potential while simultaneously ensuring that their marketing practices remain inclusive, equitable, and just. In doing so, they not only adhere to the law but also contribute to creating a more inclusive and diverse rental housing landscape that benefits both property owners and residents alike.

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