AI for Small Business: What You Should Know

PETER KOWALKE | July 21, 2019

article image
For many small businesses, using artificial intelligence can seem like a far-off goal. According to recent findings by Salesforce, a mere eight percent of SMBs use AI today. That’s not for a lack of interest, though. Nearly 80 percent of SMB leaders have plans to implement it some time in the future, Salesforce found. Thankfully, the road to AI adoption is easier than many SMBs think. AI is a lot like any other technology. As increasing numbers of organizations develop AI applications, adoption rates grow. What was once hard and purely the domain of large enterprises is now accessible to even the smallest firm. AI differs from many technologies in that it is a system that learns when data is fed into it. Data, essentially, is AI’s fuel.

Spotlight

Wood Wood

Wood Wood is a contemporary fashion and lifestyle brand founded in 2002 and based in Copenhagen, Denmark. With its own stores in Berlin, Aarhus and Copenhagen as well as an on-line store, Wood Wood is directed by co-founders Karl-Oskar Olsen and Brian SS Jensen.

OTHER ARTICLES

Compelling Benefits of Video Marketing for Small Businesses

Article | September 22, 2021

Video marketing has existed for an extended period of time. It is, nevertheless, a relatively recent development in the commercial sector, particularly for small businesses. The blog discusses the benefits of video marketing for small businesses in-depth. “Stop thinking of ‘video marketing’ as this separate entity that is optional for your business. Video is an effective form of communication that needs to be integrated into each and every aspect of your existing marketing efforts.” –James Wedmore. Video advertising is the fastest increasing kind of advertising. Despite this, small business owners remain wary of video marketing as a marketing strategy. Yet, small business video marketing is one of the most successful marketing strategies in today's fast-paced digital environment. According to Hubspot, 85% of firms, utilize video as a marketing strategy. But the ball doesn’t stop there. Your users prefer videos when compared to other forms of content. Explain Ninja, a leading video content creator says that YouTube presently has a mind-boggling 2+ billion users. It is equivalent to nearly 13% of the internet. The benefits of video marketing are that it helps to enhance customer acquisition, conversion, CTR, ranking, and sales. If small company owners learn to exploit the benefits of video marketing, they will significantly increase their chances of success in the internet trends. Additionally, the advantages of video marketing may vary according on the sort of video marketing used. Let us take a short look at the various types of video marketing. Brand videos Demonstrations and showcases Event videos Trailers and teasers Success stories and testimonials Webinar videos Instruction Videos Question and answer Videos Company Culture Videos Let Us Peep into Some Benefits of Video Marketing for Small Businesses Increase Brand Awareness and Better Online Presence Because videos are more entertaining and quickly attract viewers, their reach to an audience is increased. Effective video marketing may also help you boost your internet visibility. In fact, one of the primary benefits of video marketing for small businesses since it establishes a robust online presence. Videos are posted on a variety of social media platforms. Optinmonster reports that video marketers boost brand awareness by 54%. Generating Leads and Increases Visitors Campaign Monitor reports that around 54% of customers want to see more video content from companies they support. Video marketing may assist businesses in generating new leads and keeping their sales funnels filled. YouTube has become increasingly crucial for businesses' marketing efforts. According to Lemonlight statistics, video-assisted 84% of marketers in generating leads. Video marketing enables audiences to consume content in bite-sized chunks that address their problem areas. Builds Trust In comparison to other forms of marketing, videos enable you to engage with your audience on a more personal level and establish an emotional relationship, which contributes significantly to the development of trust. Creating videos for small businesses is one of the most effective methods to get recognition and earn your consumers' confidence. Hubspot research confirms that 84% of buyers purchase after seeing an explanation video.. Increases Sales and Conversions Another essential benefits of video marketing for small businesses is increasing sales and boosting conversions.When customers are convinced, having a video about your product or service on social media increases engagement and purchases. According to a Cisco study, online videos will account for more than 82% of all consumer internet traffic by 2022, 15 times the amount in 2017. In accordance with the Vidyard research, marketers reported a 34% boost in conversion rate when they used videos as part of their campaign Increased revenue and conversion rates are two of the ultimate advantages of video marketing. As a result, video marketing is in great demand in the realm of digital marketing due to its success. According to EyeWideDigital, using video on your landing page may boost your conversion rate by up to 80%. Increases Engagement on Social Media Connecting with your prospective customer is very important. Therefore, engagement plays a vital role in the digital world. Videos promote social media engagement; thus, video marketing for small businesses is of utmost importance. Videos posted on social media platforms garner a more significant amount of attention. Along with more engagement, videos have a longer lifespan in the ecosystem due to the increased interactions and sharing. According to Explain Ninja, over 93% of companies report gaining new consumers from videos shared on their social media pages. Social media is a video-centric platform. As a result, there are several benefits of video marketing on social media. Improves SEO Ranking With videos on your website, you can boost visitors and keep them engaged, improving your page views. Also, improving your page views will result in improving your SEO ranking too. This is because longer visitors stay on your site, the better the degree of trust with search engines and hence the higher the rank. If you embed your video on YouTube and your website, you will enhance your chances of appearing in search results. According to Alexa, YouTube is the world's second most popular website (after Google). If you advertise your videos on social media, you increase your chances of being discovered. One of the significant benefits of video marketing for small businesses is an increase in SEO ranking. Final Thoughts With the numerous benefits of video marketing, small company owners should prioritize video marketing above more traditional forms of promotion. Adopting video marketing for small businesses is a fantastic approach to increase brand recognition and conversions. Lastly, the marketing team may save time and resources by editing old video creative with relevant messages about fresh offers. Video marketing is a powerful performance driver for any sized business. FAQs: Why is video marketing important for small businesses? Video marketing help in understanding the product or service, increases engagement on digital and social platforms. It helps in brand awareness and reaches a larger audience quickly. Most importantly it builds a long-lasting relation with the customers and ultimately improves sales. What are the advantages of video marketing? Here few listed advantages of video marketing: Increase brand awareness and better online presence Generating leads and increases visitors Builds trust Increases sales and conversions Increases engagement on social media Improves SEO ranking { "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "Why is video marketing important for small businesses?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Video marketing help in understanding the product or service, increases engagement on digital and social platforms. It helps in brand awareness and reaches a larger audience quickly. Most importantly it builds a long-lasting relation with the customers and ultimately improves sales." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What are the advantages of video marketing?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Here few listed advantages of video marketing: Increase brand awareness and better online presence Generating leads and increases visitors Builds trust Increases sales and conversions Increases engagement on social media Improves SEO ranking" } }] }

Read More

How Coronavirus (COVID-19) is Impacting Small Businesses and What You Can Do About It 

Article | September 22, 2021

The spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) is developing rapidly, leaving many small business owners uncertain about their future. Those we’ve spoken with expect the coronavirus to have a significant impact on their revenue. Unfortunately, it seems these concerns are justified, but there are some actions you can take to protect your small business while at the same time, protecting yourself, your employees, and your customers. In this article, I’ll lay out what we know about how coronavirus is impacting small businesses, how you can minimize losses, and some steps you can take to protect your business. These suggestions are by no means exhaustive, as there is much we still don’t know about how this situation will play out. But we hope they will be a good starting point for business owners who are overwhelmed and unsure of what actions to take.

Read More

Basic Business Tools New Entrepreneurs Can't Do Without

Article | September 22, 2021

One of the biggest challenges startups and new entrepreneurs face is staying on top of the game. When you don't have many (or any) employees, there is only so much you can do within one workday. Not only is this lack of fingers, eyes, and minds frustrating, but it can be highly detrimental for your business as well. Luckily, nowadays, there are an abundance of tools designed to help you stay sane while conquering the business world. Whether you need a platform for internal communication, assistance with planning projects, or a safe space for all your files and documents, some very creative and clever people have got you covered. Here are a few basic business tools new entrepreneurs can't do without.

Read More

7 Intrinsic Small Business Marketing Mistakes to Look Out For

Article | September 22, 2021

Marketing is the biggest challenge for small business owners because there is no one-size-fits-all approach to promote your business. And in this process, lot many marketing mistakes are incurred by small business owners. So here is a few intrinsic yet avoidable small business marketing mistakes. There are countless marketing activity combinations to choose from; all you have to do is tailor to the marketing activities that best suit your company. Small business owners frequently try new marketing methods without conducting extensive market research or measuring the results, resulting in losses. To figure out how and where to spend marketing resources for small businesses, you must first avoid marketing blunders. Effective marketing techniques are far more than just using channels, such-and-such an approach or content strategy. Here are the top 7 most typical small business marketing mistakes to avoid in your business. Not Having Written Marketing Plan A business needs to have a well-defined marketing campaigns goal that the marketing plan is supposed to achieve. Small businesses without a strong marketing plan face failure and lack the proper marketing budget. However, it is equally important to have the marketing plans and strategy documented to increase the effectiveness of the business. A business started without a marketing plan in place is a total waste of money and time. A marketing plan generally has the following: Marketing SMART objectives and tactics for achieving them. What sets your company/service/product apart from the competition? (USP). Target audience persona. Pricing strategy. Marketing budget and measurable ROI on previous marketing strategies Metrics and how you plan to evaluate the effectiveness of your marketing strategies. It is crucial to have a marketing plan because it provides a clear direction for the future, evaluates past performance, and educates anyone on your overall strategy. A well-documented marketing plan will make it easier to plan future marketing strategies and ensure that you use best practices in small business marketing. Not having a written marketing plan is one of the most common small business marketing mistakes. No Systematic Marketing Budget When promoting on any social media site, it's smart to approach cautiously and, more importantly, with a particular budget in mind. However, no systematic and realistic marketing budget plan can cost you a significant loss of time and a waste of money. It is recommended that small businesses devote 9-12 percent of their income to marketing. If you are a start-up, though, you may need to invest more to establish brand awareness. If you cannot give 50% of your time and energy to marketing, then the best option to go for is outsourcing your marketing. This holds two benefits; firstly, you can put up your 50% of time and energy into other business tasks, and secondly, a good marketing agency will do a better job of marketing than you would. When you have decided to outsource your marketing, you will have to set a reasonable budget for doing the same. Determine the budget based on your industry and resources, but it is an investment at the end of the day. A portion of your budget should be set aside for technology and software tools to provide a return on investment for your overall marketing efforts. Good marketing has a direct and positive impact on the amount of money your company generates. Lack of Strong Online Presence From a marketing perspective, not having a website is devastating and a substantial small business marketing mistake. Unfortunately, as per the study, nearly half of small businesses in the US don’t have a website. Many small business owners do not see the need for an online presence for them, and this could do fine some ten years back but now, when the world has transformed into the digital world, surviving without a website is nearly impossible. As per the research, more than 90% of consumers search online for services or products. Remember that websites should be designed for conversion rather than just information delivery. According to Neil Patel, businesses with conversion-optimized websites are "twice as likely to see a large increase in sales." Having an online presence is one of the best marketing approaches with many benefits. It enhances accessibility, reaches a broader audience, builds customer relationships and trust, enables effortless marketing, and many more. A strong internet presence may give insightful data that can be used to measure and track the effectiveness of various marketing campaigns. Marketing Metrics Ignorance One of the risky small business marketing mistakes is failing to understand your marketing metrics and ratios. However, most small businesses do not track marketing metrics. Metrics allow you to track your progress and measure your success. Marketing analytics allows you to see what works and what doesn't, assists brands in determining whether campaigns are successful, and assists you in recognizing what adjustments need to be made and providing insights to adjust future campaigns accordingly. Knowing your marketing metrics is essential no matter what type of business you run. Google Analytics and Google Search Console are tools that provide information about your visitors. Tracking is essential because what is not measured cannot be improved. Here is the suggestion that you can implement, set aside time each week to evaluate the effectiveness of your marketing. Take note of what works and what doesn’t and use that information to guide your next marketing campaign. No Emphasis on Valuing the Current Customers It is natural to focus on acquiring new customers to see those numbers increase, but never forget about your existing customers in this ongoing process. According to studies, it costs six times more to acquire a new customer than it does to retain an existing one. Listen to customer feedback because, according to Forrester Research, nearly 70% of consumers read customer reviews before buying a product or service. Be quick to appease customers when they complain; losing an existing customer indeed costs more than acquiring a new one. This will increase their trust in your brand. Finally, a satisfied customer will return to your business and spend more time and money. Furthermore, happy and loyal customers are more likely to spread the word, and word of mouth is still the most potent form of marketing. Therefore, loyal customers can be your company's most influential advocate. Right Audience Was Not Targeted No matter how well your campaign and marketing strategy may be, if you are not targeting the right audience, then all your money and effort are in vain and can be one of the most pivotal small business marketing mistakes. Sometimes targeting the wrong audience is worse than not targeting the market because you find out that none of them respond to your marketing efforts, and it leads to a total waste of your time and effort without any return. Spend some time learning about your customers' behavior, their goals, what motivates them, and so on. Market research from your customer base, such as surveys and interviews, allows you to create a strong target audience persona. Target people you know will be interested in your service. If you try to talk to everyone in marketing, you will have a difficult time reaching anyone. However, if you target your ideal buyer, you will be able to make the most of your marketing budget while also attracting and retaining more customers. Ignore Reviewing Your Competitors Many small business owners avoid keeping track of their competitors, which can be considered small business marketing mistakes. However, examining your competitors can provide you with a thorough understanding of your customers. This could be your hidden weapon. There are mainly two types of competitors: Direct competitors. Indirect competitors. Ignoring your competitors is akin to ignoring your customers. Examine your competitors' marketing efforts, successes, and failures, and never replicate them in your business practices and allocate your marketing resources to find new customers. SpyFu, Facebook Ad Library, and Google Alert all allow you to view your competitors' marketing campaigns. To put it concisely, investigating what your competitors are doing or not doing, determining what they plan, what their next move will be, and analyzing their strategies may provide you with valuable insights to use for your benefit. This clears that ignoring reviewing your competitors can be one of the pre-eminent small business marketing mistakes. Running a business is full of mistakes, especially when it comes to marketing. However, knowing the errors and rectifying them timely is the key to success. In the above article, I have listed seven essential small business marketing mistakes to be avoided. FAQs: What are some marketing mistakes? Here few common marketing mistakes to avoid: Not having written marketing planning. No systematic marketing budget. Lack of strong online presence. Not knowing marketing metrics. No emphasis on valuing the current customers. Not targeting the right audience. Ignore reviewing your competitors. What problems are small businesses facing? Major problems faced by small businesses are: Money management. Maintaining online presence. Lack of proper marketing strategy and planning. Obtaining and keeping customers. Quality and growth must be balanced. How do you avoid marketing mistakes? Marketing mistakes can be avoided by proper planning in every aspect of the business. Do thorough marketing research, focus on your potential customer’s needs, track your performance, and more. These are a few ways you could avoid marketing mistakes by being a little cautious. { "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What are some marketing mistakes?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Here few common marketing mistakes to avoid: Not having written marketing planning. No systematic marketing budget. Lack of strong online presence. Not knowing marketing metrics. No emphasis on valuing the current customers. Not targeting the right audience. Ignore reviewing your competitors." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What problems are small businesses facing?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Major problems faced by small businesses are: Money management. Maintaining online presence. Lack of proper marketing strategy and planning. Obtaining and keeping customers. Quality and growth must be balanced." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "How do you avoid marketing mistakes?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Marketing mistakes can be avoided by proper planning in every aspect of the business. Do thorough marketing research, focus on your potential customer’s needs, track your performance, and more. These are a few ways you could avoid marketing mistakes by being a little cautious." } }] }

Read More

Spotlight

Wood Wood

Wood Wood is a contemporary fashion and lifestyle brand founded in 2002 and based in Copenhagen, Denmark. With its own stores in Berlin, Aarhus and Copenhagen as well as an on-line store, Wood Wood is directed by co-founders Karl-Oskar Olsen and Brian SS Jensen.

Events