| January 15, 2019

People Connect Podcast: Artificial Intelligence & Small Businesses

Nancy Huynh

Nancy is our Senior Marketing Analyst. She brings over a decade of experience in growing sales through her ability to... Nancy is our Senior Marketing Analyst. She brings over a decade of experience in growing sales through her ability to tell the story behind the numbers.

Digital Authority Partners’ CEO, Codrin Arsene, spoke with Nichelle Womack of the People Connect podcast about how artificial intelligence is already positively impacting the workflows of small businesses.

 

Listen to the podcast below:

 

 

 

Whereas artificial intelligence is often talked about in the context of its impact on enterprises (because that’s where the money is), the truth is, AI is permeating every single aspect of our everyday life. And yes, that means, the workings of small and medium businesses, among others.

 

In this podcast, Codrin Arsene touched on the main S&B use cases which are already being impacted by various Artificial Intelligence solutions on the market today. Here’s a quick rundown of the primary AI use-cases every small business should be aware of.

 

Hiring

It’s often hard for small businesses to recruit top talent because candidates will often will apply for or be headhunted by large, established organizations. Their HR operations will also have systems in place that can speed-up their onboarding; big companies can prioritize time on new employees without sacrificing other aspects of the business.

 

However, AI can help small businesses compete against larger companies by efficiently streamlining the recruiting process.

 

For example, some machine learning applications are already helping companies recruit better and faster. For example, check out Hiresphere (in Beta testing). The company claims to help small businesses sort the resumes they receive for a specific job, telling hiring managers which of the applicants should be given priority and contacted immediately. Hiresphere looks at candidates’ resumes, education, past employers, social media, and online portfolios to rank candidates based on a job description provided by the business.  

 

In addition, the quality of hire will increase as the AI can match a candidate’s skills and experience to the necessary job requirements. Upon being hired, that employee will have fewer reasons to leave in the future as they will be satisfied and productive within their role.

 

Happy and driven employees are key to scaling up a business and AI will be able to compete against large businesses for the best.

 

Marketing and advertising

Marketing campaigns must focus on delivering the right message to their ideal customers. In today’s digital age, customers expect to only see ads that are tailored to their own preferences, otherwise small businesses may lose leads to their competition (and worse, money spent on ads that do not perform well).

 

AI prevents this from happening by creating buyer personas to understand exactly what a customer is looking for. This enables marketers to predict how a customer will react when they receive a marketing message. The more it suits their needs, the more likely they will communicate back with the brand.

 

Of course, none of this will be possible if the personas created aren’t matched correctly with the customer. AI analytics study a customer’s past and present online behavior to discover ad create accurate advertising campaigns.

 

Chatbots are another way to improve a small business’ marketing campaign. By integrating a chatbot into a customer service system, it can provide around-the-clock support. Answers can be provided to a customer as soon as they need it, increasing customer satisfaction and sales.

 

CRM insights

The next way AI can help small businesses is through their CRM. These programs are vital to small businesses as they enable management to handle how customers interact with the business. It’s mostly used to store important contact information, such as email addresses and phone numbers.

 

AI can help small businesses discover things about both these groups from within their own CRM.

 

One such tool that can help is Einstein by Salesforce. It’s an AI tool that predicts and recommends actions based on small business’ processes and customer data. From here, the insights are used to automate responses and actions, allowing employees to focus on other important tasks.

 

Einstein can also improve a small business’ growth through social media. It can tell where the brand and products are being used even if the business’ name isn’t referenced.

 

All these insights discovered by AI can increase an average order value, recommend different and better products to anonymous visitors.

 

Automate mundane tasks

There are just some jobs that no one likes to do but they just have to be done.

 

Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is the application of AI that enables machines to automate these repetitive activities. Although it may seem exciting to use AI to tackle difficult problems, AI will ultimately make the most difference in completing simple tasks that are better served by a machine than a human being.  The benefits can be seen by everyone and with increased accuracy.

 

For example, secretarial and routine jobs can now be automated by AI. Low-level cognitive tasks such as sending routine emails and scheduling meetings with clients can be automated by a machine, enabling personnel to focus their time on other aspects of the business, leading to increased employee satisfaction from completing rewarding tasks.

 

AI technologies can also deliver constant and consistent work. The chance of human error is significantly reduced from all processes, work can be completed quickly and an AI software will never deviate from the task at hand.

 

All advantages of automating mundane tasks fall under one umbrella: reduced costs. AI systems cut down operational costs as they can work for longer performing these tasks better than employees.

 

Improve sales

The final reason why small businesses should use AI is to increase sales. Every sale requires prospecting new leads, showcasing a product, engaging and negotiating with the client and building a relationship with them. AI technology can be used as part of the sales process to identify patterns in data and determine which leads are worth pursuing and the most likely to convert.

 

Salespeople want to move the right people through the sales funnel as efficiently as possible.

 

For example, an algorithm can be programmed to go back through all previous deals won and lost and analyze patterns that determined how they resulted. Machine learning techniques can then use this information to create better strategies and make data-driven decisions.

 

AI tools like Gong, Jog, and Chorus have been developed to help optimize sales for small businesses, with the ability to record and transcribe every call that your sales reps have. They can then compare the strategies your sales reps use with those that are employed by your most successful team members and offer analysis based on word choice, or the ratio of time spent talking to time spent listening.
Interested in exploring how AI can help your business succeed? Digital Authority Partners is here to help. Drop us a line at [email protected] or call us at (312) 600-5433

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