The Perfect ChatGPT Prompt Sequence

AI, Content Marketing

The internet (and TikTok) has been flooded with tips and videos about the best ChatGPT prompts for anything under the sun. And frankly, if you’re looking for individual use cases, you won’t find that here. But what you will find are some important rules for structuring a good ChatGPT prompt sequence to get a better final output on your content drafts. Let’s get started.

1. Give it something to emulate.

Before you ask it to do something, give it source material to emulate. What do you want your final output to look, feel, or sound like? Feed it an article or passage from previous work that hits your desired tone of voice or writing style. This way it can better shape the output to what you’re looking for. Otherwise, you get that same robot-y, neutral, informational, boring tone that it defaults to. 

2. Define an audience or avatar.

Early in your sequence establish a fictional person or avatar to refer back to. Describe your target audience and give it a name. For example, the “Eco-Friendly Eater” for a blog about sustainable living. Feed it demographic information, interests, behaviors, fears, desires, objectives, obstacles, aspirations… as much as you can to establish a clear picture of who you are targeting. Then at any point, you can refer back to your “Eco-Friendly Eater” without needing to explain who they are.

3. Give clear instructions for the tone of voice.

As best you can, articulate the personality, tone, and cadence you want. Explain how you want it to be “playful and metaphorical with an underlying sense of expertise and professionalism” or how it should be “empathetic and encouraging while adding a dash of witty and irreverent humor.” The better you can explain the tone you’re looking for, the better output you’ll get.

4. Build a style guide to refer back to.

Similar to defining an avatar, establishing a style guide will help you get something closer to what you’re looking for. This could be things like:

  • Use active voice
  • Avoid slang and jargon 
  • Add varying sentence lengths
  • Write for 6th-grade reading level

Defining it as “Brand’s Writing Style Guide” will allow you to refer back to it without having to repeat the instructions every single time.

5. Play pretend.

Simulation is a great tactic. Tell it to “pretend like you’re a nutritionist giving advice to a new client who’s skeptical about changing their diet plan.” Make ChatGPT put itself in other people’s shoes. Telling it to “act like someone else” forces it to take their perspective and can lead to a more empathetic result.

6. Shape it into something usable.

You’ll need to get out your sculpting tools to really get it to where you can use it. Don’t take the first output. Push back. Ask for alternative perspectives. Ask it to condense or expand. Rarely is the first response good enough. Use the chisel that is your mind to sculpt that final output into something usable.

7. Challenge it.

Challenge it to think differently. Question “how” or “why” it said something. Ask it to explain step by step how it got to where it’s at. Tell it that its output is not good enough. By challenging it to do things differently you’re able to better refine the final output. It’s almost like subtly letting the AI know that you’re expectations are for something outside the box. This forces it away from the default, generic outputs and into something more unique.

8. Make it think outside the box.

This is where your creativity and experience come into play as a prompter. How can you shake things up while prompting to extract hidden gems? Ask it to write a poem. Ask for quotes about the topic. Ask it to craft a fictional short story about the topic. Tell it to write a rap song. Ask it to write a joke. You never know… it may all be useless, or maybe you just found your unique hook for your introduction.

9. Establish a framework for your final ask.

The prep work is done. You’ve primed the AI to think about all the considerations. You’ve given it all the background information it needs. Now it’s time for your final ask. What do you want it to do? Write an article? Write an outline? Write a script? Structure your final ask within a framework to ensure all details are taken into consideration.

10. Rinse and repeat.

Repeat the cycle as needed. Continue to shape, refine, and revise until you have something useable. You may get lucky and get something pretty close to what you’re looking for, or you may need to combine a few outputs. Regardless, the more you practice the more you’ll learn how to really get the most out of ChatGPT.

Read next: The Role of ChatGPT in Content Creation

Get the Most Out of ChatGPT

By understanding and applying the perfect prompt sequence, you can make the most out of ChatGPT’s capabilities for content creation. With careful guidance and iterative refinement, this powerful tool can be harnessed responsibly to produce engaging, informative, and unique content tailored to specific needs and audiences. As you continue to explore the possibilities, your proficiency in prompting ChatGPT will grow, enabling you to craft high-quality content.

About the Author

Nick Footer

Nick Footer is an entrepreneur and founder of Intuitive Digital, a national award-winning digital marketing agency in Portland, Oregon. With over 15 years of experience, he has helped hundreds of businesses improve their online presence through search engine optimization, paid advertising, and website design.

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