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How to Craft the PERFECT ChatGPT Prompt

Not getting what you want when using ChatGPT? Here’s how to take your prompts to the next level.

By now, you’ve probably heard about how ChatGPT, or generative AI, can help you streamline your business, write amazing marketing copy and perform miracles. If you haven’t heard, ChatGPT is an AI-powered language model designed to understand and generate human-like text based on given prompts. It can answer questions, write marketing copy, summarize lengthy documents and perform a multitude of other tasks.

The true secret to unlocking the full potential of this tool lies in the ability to craft well-structured prompts. ChatGPT is more than just a question-and-answer bot; it has a broad skill set that includes translation, tutoring, creative writing, brainstorming ideas, coding help and more. However, its knowledge cut-off is September 2021, so it doesn’t have access to real-time data. Remembering this timeline is crucial when formulating prompts.

Here’s a guide to the art of effective prompting with ChatGPT.

1. Be specific.

To ensure you get what you want, be explicit with your request. The prompt should be as detailed as possible to guide the AI toward generating the desired output. For instance, rather than prompting, “Write a listing description,” copy and paste your MLS description and any specifics about the house. Then, use a more detailed prompt, such as “Write a fun, factual description of this house using the details provided. Please make it fun, specific, adhere to Fair Housing laws and make it 200 words.” This will yield a more comprehensive response. Remember: You must review and fact check what you get back to ensure it is accurate and doesn’t violate the National Association of Realtors® Code of Ethics or Fair Housing laws.

2. Be clear about the format you want in the response.

If you need a list, mention it explicitly. If you require a detailed explanation, ask for it directly. For example, if you’re looking for steps to prepare a lasagna, instead of asking “How to make lasagna?” it would be better to prompt “List down the step-by-step procedure to prepare a lasagna.” This helps ChatGPT understand the desired format of your response.

3. Give it perspective on speaker and audience.

By using a statement like “You are a Realtor® describing the homebuying process to potential buyers,” you can lead the AI into a particular narrative style or approach.

4. Specify the type of content you want.

Do you want a social media post? Writing a post for your blog? Use that information in your prompt. An example: “Compose an SEO-focused Facebook post presenting five compelling reasons why prospective homebuyers should consider purchasing a property in [your city], even amidst rising interest rates.”

Not getting what you want? Rephrase the question. For example, if you asked, “What is the population of Colombia?” and you get an incorrect response, rephrase. You could ask, “Could you provide the latest available data on Colombia’s population according to the United Nations?”

5. Simplify.

If the AI is unable to understand the prompt, simplify the language or break down complex questions into smaller parts. If you find the response to be overly verbose or too technical, you can direct the AI by saying, “Please provide a simpler explanation,” or “Could you explain that in layman’s terms?”

Remember, ChatGPT is a tool. While it mimics human conversation, it does not possess beliefs, emotions or consciousness. It generates responses based on patterns and data from its training and doesn’t have access to personal data about individuals unless explicitly provided during the conversation. Therefore, respecting privacy guidelines and using the AI responsibly is imperative.

Effective interaction with ChatGPT is a skill that can be mastered with understanding and practice. Be clear and explicit with prompts, creatively guide the AI, and make use of rephrasing techniques. All of these prompts can significantly improve the quality of interaction.

As we continue to explore this technology, learning to prompt correctly will open doors to an exciting range of possibilities with ChatGPT. 

Jason Jakus is a real estate broker-owner with NextHome Advisors based in Southwest Florida.