| May 1, 2024 | | 6 min read

10 Ideas to Implement AI for Small Business Marketing

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Small businesses don’t catch a break when it comes to the demands of marketing their products or services: they may have more limited resources, but they still have to compete with their larger counterparts for the attention of audiences. Artificial intelligence (AI) for small businesses is changing the game for smaller enterprises, enabling them to make a big impact while staying within their budget.

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AI is impacting just about every corner of digital marketing, from email and social media to lead generation and ad campaigns. In this article, we explore 10 services AI agencies can start offering their small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) today to boost visibility, conversions, and profits.

1. Website chat

Gone are the days of infuriating chatbots that never seem to provide the information you’re looking for.

Well, those bots may not be completely gone, but with AI-powered chatbots, there’s no excuse not to offer customers a satisfying, informative, and brand-boosting experience when they interact with your chat AI. 

Website chatbots may have a reputation for being hit-or-miss, but their impact on businesses is significant. Business leaders claim an average of a 67% boost in sales when using chatbots—clear evidence of how important they are for small businesses with limited customer service resources (Outgrow). Surprisingly, they aren’t just a plus for businesses: 75% of customers like interacting with chatbots (Vendasta). They provide instantaneous information, saving the need to wait for a response from a real person or to comb through pages of support documentation and FAQs to find an answer. 

When it comes to AI solutions for small businesses, well-trained, human-like website chatbots can boost customer satisfaction, increase your clients’ efficiency in dealing with support requests, and provide an impressive bump to their sales.

2. Personalized email campaigns

Email is a great example of how using AI for small business marketing can enhance already successful strategies. Email remains a digital marketing winner thanks to its affordability and high average return on investment (ROI) for SMBs. This has been true for years, but with AI, businesses can take the best parts of email and supercharge them.

Firstly, consider the impact of personalization. Beyond using the recipient name in the email, AI enables SMBs to use large amounts of data to identify new strategies to segment their audiences, optimize send times, and even tailor content based on customer characteristics.

The improvements and refinements made possible through the use of AI email tools lead to more impactful, targeted messaging. This produces higher engagement, more click-throughs, and greater conversions for your SMB clients.

3. Social media marketing

Maintaining an active presence across a variety of social media channels is among the most time-consuming tasks for SMBs. Researching post ideas and trends, creating a content schedule, creating images and videos, writing copy to accompany posts, and responding to comments can add up to a full-time job. Using AI for small business marketing on social media is a no-brainer.

AI can help with just about all the components of an active social media strategy:

  • Assessing data and trend analysis: AI can be used to analyze other accounts in the nice to identify trends and competitive data to inform client strategies
  • Social media content scheduling: AI can be leveraged to identify optimal content schedules and to refine these over time in response to data
  • Creation of text and images: Text and image-generating models can be used to craft social media visuals and captions.
  • Social listening: AI can provide SMB owners with valuable insights into how their business is perceived based on comments and brand mentions.
  • Campaign analysis: AI social marketing campaigns can be analyzed to provide actionable insights for more impactful future campaigns. 

4. Reputation management

Customer sentiment is an important metric for businesses: it can help them gauge what’s going well and which areas need improvement while helping them get ahead of potentially reputation-damaging situations proactively.

AI solutions for small business marketing have emerged in the reputation management space, helping small businesses analyze large quantities of customer feedback without needing to invest hands-on staff time. Instead, white label AI software can be used to keep their finger on the pulse of what their customers are saying about their brand. 

This is particularly important when it comes to review management. Responding to reviews promptly is one of the most important reputation management activities a business can engage in, since it demonstrates they value their customers' experience. Both negative and positive reviews should be addressed professionally and quickly.

Without an AI marketing integration, doing this manually can be extremely time-consuming. There’s also a lot of run for human error in missing reviews and letting them go unaddressed. With an AI solution, SMBs can take this task off their to-do list, freeing up time for other high-value activities. 

5. SEO automation

The AI digital marketing revolution has made a big impact on SEO, which is a key pillar of any robust digital strategy. AI algorithms can be used to analyze your client’s website data and content to identify opportunities for optimization. This can include website structure, elements of technical SEO, content keyword optimization strategies, and backlinks strategies.

Beyond optimizing existing websites, AI can be leveraged to create data-driven content strategies for businesses and to conduct regular keyword research that can be applied to content strategies. Then, once SEO content campaigns are underway, AI-powered tools can be implemented to track SEO performance and further refine campaign strategies.

SEO has always been an iterative process, and AI for small businesses doesn’t change that. What it does change is the ability for smaller businesses to compete for those coveted top spots in Google’s search results by leveraging powerful AI automation tools and techniques.

6. Content ideation

This application of AI for small business marketing is probably most familiar to your clients. Tools like ChatGPT and Bard are valuable sidekicks in the content ideation process, helping small businesses overcome creative blocks and speed up their brainstorming flow.

Ultimately, human creativity is still the most valuable asset when it comes to creating memorable, impactful content strategies. Readers can often intuit when they’re reading AI-generated content, and SMBs shouldn’t over-rely on AI for content creation, and they should employ humanization techniques. However, when it comes to ideation and content planning, it can be a huge time saver.

7. Lead generation and conversion

Even the most successful businesses need a robust lead generation strategy to ensure they don’t succumb to client churn out. Luckily, there are some great AI solutions for small businesses to manage the process of generating leads and converting more of them to paying customers. 

For the AI lead generation process, tools can be used to generate ideas and content for lead magnets. AI chatbots and automated email campaigns can also be used to capture leads and move them through your sales funnel.

AI predictive lead scoring tools can be useful for some businesses, such as SaaS and service-based businesses, enabling them to focus their efforts on the hottest leads.

Once leads are captured, AI startups can offer personalized AI-powered marketing strategies like the ones we’ve looked at so far can be implemented to supercharge conversion rates.

8. Creative support

Creative work requires time and the ability to focus with limited interruptions, two things that are in short supply for SMB owners. By leveraging AI solutions for creative support, they can produce far stronger creative content in less time.

Some businesses may make money with AI art, but it can also be used to enhance brand identity and boost visual appeal with extra on-brand assets created in a fraction of the time they would traditionally take to make. 

For example, tools like Canva and Adobe’s Creative Suite have come out with user-friendly AI assistant tools that make it much easier to edit images, create vector graphics, make infographics, and more. Human input is still required, but AI tools make the job faster and easier. 

9. Customer insights

In digital marketing, data is king. The more high-quality data a business has—and the more skilled they are in drawing insights from it—the stronger their marketing impact will be. 

Data AIs for small businesses can gather and analyze important customer information, providing insights into behavior and preferences. These insights can be used to improve messaging and even to refine products and services to better align with customer needs. 

10. Ad targeting

AI tools can help businesses more effectively target audiences with their campaigns. This is a huge value to SMBs, for whom every marketing dollar matters. If they can appropriately target audiences, they can reduce their cost per view, cost per click, and cost per conversion, all of which result in a healthier bottom line. 

About the Author

Lawrence Dy is the SEO Strategy Manager at Vendasta. His career spans from starting as a Jr. Copywriter in the automotive industry to becoming a Senior Editorial Content Manager in various digital marketing niches. Outside of work, Lawrence moonlights as a music producer/beatmaker and spends time with friends and family.

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