Newsletter #85

AI Creator Cockpit | Viral or Organic Growth? | AI Writing Tools in Content Marketing | Your Custom Chatbot | SaaS Webdesign Trends | and more

Welcome to Fresh van Root newsletter #85!

This issue of the newsletter is heavy on AI-related stuff. But there is no way around it – every tech company is adding AI features to its products, and every creator is publishing content about those tools. My favorite read in this issue is the one that outlines how writers can embrace AI tools in their process. And an app that allows the creation of your own AI chatbot is also superb. A not-so-AI-related topic: I published a blog that compares the growth between Clubhouse with Mastodon. Stay fresh, Rolf

Hello to 14 new subscribers. 👋 I’m Rolf, exploring content and apps at the intersection of marketing, productivity, tech, content creation, and social media – for curious minds. This bi-weekly newsletter is a summary of that exploration.

🧠 Hand-Picked Content

Trends: It Gets Pinned A Lot (Report)

27 predicted trends that come true with an 80% possibility – according to Pinterest. Based on the data created by its millions of users, Pinterest claims to be able to predict trends. Explore trends like dual hair colors, sci-fi fashion, dates in aquariums, train travel, and many more. More

Social: Mastodon following Clubhouse? (Blog post, 1min)

The hype and virality about Mastodon reminded many of Clubhouse. But is the growth of these companies comparable? In short: No. Mastodon was already established as a social network with an extensive community long before it went viral, so it will probably outlive Clubhouse. In this post, I look at the differences and compare the user growth of the two apps. More

Design: Can A Custom-Trained AI Model Replace Illustrators? (Blog post, 10min)

This agency wanted to find out if graphics created using AI text2image tools could match the work of their in-house illustrators. The blog post lays out the process for creating their custom AI model and shows the results side-by-side. The illustrators have a clear opinion: AI is useful for inspiration and beating artistic block, but it still lacks detail and nuance. More

Content Marketing: Balancing The Human And The Machine (Blog post, 15min)

You should embrace AI to improve the content you create. But there are certain areas where AI is bad at creating meaningful content. For example, writing about specific products often needs to be corrected. It is up to you, the human, to make the content original and opinionated and to freshen it up with legit data. This blog post outlines the work relationship between writers and AI writing tools. More

Search Engines: AI In Search (Podcast, 30min)

Bing Search was the first to add AI chat features to its product. A NYTimes reporter got early access and shares his first experience using the product in this podcast. More

Social: Provide Content Worth Consuming (Infographic, 1min)

On LinkedIn, everybody is selling something. Bluntly posting your product offers will get you zero results. That’s why you should stick to the 4:1 ratio: For every 4 pieces of helpful info you share, post 1 piece of info on how your product helps. Get more tips & tricks in this infographic (in a retro 8-bit pixel design). More

🛠️ Tools & Apps & Services

AI: Your Content In A Chatbot

Chatbase is a ChatGPT-like application based on your data. This app is experimental but shows in which direction current developments with AI lead. Currently, it supports a PDF upload of your content. After uploading, you can ask questions about the uploaded content right away. While the use cases shown are for personal use only, we can expect apps like these to connect to our company data and offer a way for customers to interact with it. Screenshot | More

Webdesign: Trends And Inspiration

SaaS companies are at the forefront of innovating in web design. These companies want to stand out from established businesses. That’s why it is always interesting to look at what’s trending among them. More

Productivity: Umbrella App For All Tasks

Your tasks might be spread out across different tools. What if you could manage all your tasks in one central interface? Akiflow can act as an umbrella app connecting all the apps you already use for managing your work. It integrates with the most common project and collaboration apps, like Slack, Clickup, Asana, and Trello. In Akiflow, you can manage all tasks and put them on your calendar. This app is handy for independent consultants who work with many clients and tools. More

Creators: Your AI Toolset

Bearly AI is a Mac OS app that combines AI-powered tools into one interface. You can create text and images, summarize articles, work on marketing copy, and more. This is an interesting concept, and we will see more of those tools popping up. Think of it as an umbrella software for AI services like ChatGPT, Midjourney, and others. More

Web Creators: A New Website Builder

WebWave is a young but powerful product with lots of templates and an excellent product onboarding flow. The startup claims its tool builder works “like a graphic program.” Product Hunt Discussion | More

📣 Fresh van Root

Unsplash Experiment (Pictures)

We started uploading pictures we use in our blog and social media posts to Unsplash. You can use them too. Screenshot | More

Simple ChatGPT Example (LinkedIn, 1min)

I used ChatGPT to fine-tune a LinkedIn post. Here is how I did it (on LinkedIn). More

Microsoft Webdesign (Mastodon, 1min)

This landing page announcing Bing AI search shows that Microsoft is still not a design-driven company. More

🏞️ Your Next Wallpaper?

Kyrgyzstan | Unsplash

Why We Need Subtitles (Video, 10min)

It has become common practice to turn on subtitles for everything we watch. Why is that? One reason: Stuff produced for cinema with a Dolby system gets watched on a smartphone. The video sound was not mixed with that device in mind. More

Fresh Satelite Images Delivered Daily

That is the claim of SkyFi App. Using this service, you can zoom in on any place on earth and buy a high-res version of the image. Available as a mobile app or on the desktop browser. More