Boost Your Business by Using Generative AI

By at 29 September, 2023, 7:57 pm

By Barbara Weltman –  

Generative artificial intelligence (AI) is a technology that can be used to analyze data, create content, and handle various business tasks more efficiently than you and your employees could do. AI makes positive and negative headlines almost every day, from the rapid growth of ways AI can be used in business (a positive) to dire predictions that it can upend civilization (a negative). According to the SBE Council’s survey earlier this year, 65% of small business owners believe AI is useful for businesses. With the popularity of ChatGPT and its free accessibility, as well as an ever-growing basket of practical AI tools, many small business owners will likely start to use AI or expand usage in their business. What can AI do for you?

Why use AI?

The advent of the Internet more than 25 years ago gave companies new opportunities for increased revenue and greater productivity, although it took time for adoption by small businesses. The same can be said for AI.

According to the McKinsey Global Institute, AI potentially could increase global profits for businesses by as much as $4.4 trillion annually.

Are You Already Using AI?

Many small businesses are already using AI, and some may not even know it. Examples of AI tools (and the percentage of small businesses using them according to the SBE Council survey) are:

● Customer service chatbots (41%)

● Digital voice assistants (39%)

● Tools for marketing and predictive analysis (38%)

● Facial detection for security (20%)

Constant Contact found that the easiest places to start leveraging AI are social media, content creation, and analytics. AI can be used for:

● Screening job applicants

● Training employees through a personalized learning experience

● Managing email

● Personalizing the customer experience

What Tools are Available?

Perhaps the most widely known and used AI tool today is OpenAI’s ChatGPT, which is designed to create content, generate surveys, write code in certain programming languages (including HTML), and more. There’s a free version, plus paid options. You can see how I use it and what cautions are worth noting.

Look for other AI tools that can meet specific needs. For example:

● EdApp helps you create AI-generated lessons for employee training.

● elai enables you to build customized videos from text.

● Microsoft 365 Copilot handles an array of tasks, such as analyzing Excel spreadsheets, creating PowerPoint presentations, and backing up files. As of September 26, 2023, Copilot offers 150 features that operate through Windows 11.

● OpusClip repurposes long talking vides into short clips.

● 10Web creates a website and hosts it to launch and grow a business.

● Tidio enhances the customer experience by combining AI with human customer support.

There are numerous other tools and companies that offer AI solutions for small businesses.

Caution: Using AI tools is not without risk. Watch out for:

● Fake information created by AI.

● Potential intellectual property violations by AI tools using protected content without permission.

● Exposure to discrimination actions for biased AI tools used in recruiting new employees. Note: Illinois, Maryland, and New York City require companies to inform job applicants that AI is being used.

What is the Future of AI for Your Business?

Some of the considerations for the growing use of AI in your business start with defining your needs. What areas do you think AI can help your company work more efficiently? Remember the old expression “there’s an app for that”? The same can be true today of AI tools.

Other considerations:

● How to deploy current staff when AI tools do their current jobs? Fear that AI will put people out of work probably is an exaggeration because businesses can retrain employees to use AI, handle new functions, and utilize staff for higher-value purposes.

● What ROI can you expect? Some AI tools are free, but others require an investment. How much does of budget can be allocated to new AI solutions and what return on this investment are you likely to see in the short term and the long term?


One of the best things that can be said of AI is that it enables small businesses to perform like big companies. It allows small businesses to compete in the marketplace with multinational corporations on a cost-effective basis. Stay alert to new AI tools and what they can do for your business.

Barbara Weltman is a member of SBE Council’s advisory board, and has been a leading consultant for small businesses of every kind for over twenty years. She’s the founder of Big Ideas for Small Business® and has written numerous books on small business operations, including J.K. Lasser’s Small Business Taxes, Complete Idiot’s Guide to Starting a Home-Based Business, and The Rational Guide to Building Small Business Credit. Follow Barbara on Twitter @BigIdeas4SB.



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