No longer considered science fiction, the use of artificial intelligence (AI) in marketing has exploded this year, and it’s here to stay. Luckily, it offers a wealth of opportunities for small businesses, from easy content creation to ultra-precise ad targeting and simpler market research. Keep reading to learn 12 ways to use AI for small business marketing, plus helpful AI tools to get started.
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1. Building Your Website
One of the foremost ways of using AI for small business marketing is for building a small business website. Creating a site for your business is essential. In today’s digitally accelerated world, 76% of customers find out about a business by researching its online presence. The good news is it’s no longer a complicated process, thanks to artificial intelligence.
Today’s AI-powered website builders, like Wix, allow even beginners to create professional websites in minutes. Answer some prompts, and ADI (artificial design intelligence) software automatically creates a template that makes building a Wix website a breeze. There’s also an AI content writer embedded in the software to make it easier to create content for your website.
Did you know? Forty-nine percent of consumers are interested in AI-powered online search, according to Google Search Statistics about AI.
2. Optimizing Your Website’s UX
Beyond building it, AI can also optimize your website to provide the best possible user experience (UX). For one, AI software can test your website’s usability and quality, then give you valuable data like where your customers are clicking, which pages they spend the most and least time on, and where they’re visiting from, among others. This data is valuable for identifying the areas of your website to improve on.
Moreover, AI-powered features can also substantially benefit your website. For example, accessibility tools like auto-generated captions or screen reader adjustments make your site easier to navigate for disabled users. AI can also add personalized search functions for users, which are particularly helpful for ecommerce sites. Learn more about what makes a good website for additional ways to use smart tools.
Pro tip: Check out our list of the best free small business website builders, several of which offer smart tools for building a site, creating content, or analyzing site builder engagement.
3. Targeting Emails
An old adage in marketing is to know your customers, and AI makes this easier and more precise than ever. While traditional email send-outs rely on a lot of projection and guesswork and don’t always guarantee those all-important clicks, today’s AI software is quickly changing that.
By collecting valuable recipient data like open rates and which subject lines are most effective, AI software can create more highly targeted email campaigns tailored to each recipient’s needs and interests. In turn, this can produce a higher return on investment (ROI)—email marketing statistics reveal that segmented campaigns get exponentially more opens and clicks than non-segmented sends.
AI can also help automate your permission-based email marketing campaigns better than ever before. While email automations have been around for a while, AI tools can make them even more powerful through tasks like automatically sending personalized replies or organizing your inbox by certain keywords or topics.
4. Building Your Brand Identity
Building a strong brand presence for your business is central to long-term success. However, creating brand identity visuals can be time-consuming and costly. This is where AI comes in. From logo generators to intelligent design platforms, today’s AI is capable enough to generate professional branding materials for your business.
Platforms like Looka and Designhill, for example, have logo generators that automatically create logos based on your answers to their prompts. Meanwhile, platforms like Canva and Designs.ai offer text-to-image generator capabilities, making creating professional images quick and easy. Learn more about these platforms in our guide to the best sites for logo design.
5. Writing Content
Search-optimized content marketing is essential for generating leads and sales online, but seeing results takes time. It’s also time and effort-intensive—which is where AI can help. Long-form content generation using AI is increasingly becoming available through the likes of Smodin and Anyword. However, this tech is still in its infancy and will likely need human revisions.
AI content marketing apps are perhaps best used as assistive tools—at least for the moment. For example, editing software like Grammarly acts as a virtual writing assistant to review your spelling, grammar, and more. Meanwhile, chatbots like ChatGPT simplify the research process by answering prompts. Instead of spending hours scouring the internet for information, simply type a prompt, and AI chatbots can fetch it for you in seconds.
Did you know? AI marketing statistics show that over 44% of small businesses are already using AI to create content.
6. Creating Marketing Copy
In a similar vein, AI content writers can also help write compelling marketing copy. While they aren’t always 100% accurate, AI-generated copy can serve as a basis for forming more polished content. Think of it as an idea-generating tool for your copies, which you can further refine later on. This can help streamline your content creation process, saving you more time.
AI tools go far beyond just content writers, though. You can use AI to create graphics, website layouts, and more. Find all the tools you need to maximize AI with our guide to the best AI marketing tools.
7. Targeting Digital Ads
One of the best benefits of using AI for small business marketing is being able to target customers more precisely. This is thanks to AI’s capacity to process large amounts of customer data in seconds and then make sound decisions based on the information, like determining the content best suited for each customer type.
This is particularly helpful for creating digital ads. In an age where big data drives almost all of advertising, precision is key. AI can sift complex data in seconds, learn from previous ad campaigns, and anticipate customer behavior on platforms like Google and Facebook. It then uses this data to determine the kind of messaging that works best for each customer type to create more accurate ad campaigns.
8. Analyzing SEO Keywords
Search engine optimization (SEO) is foundational for many different digital marketing strategies. SEO helps your site be discoverable and connects you with the right audience in the wide world of the internet. Ultimately, good SEO comes down to finding the right keywords for your brand to place on your website, where artificial intelligence content analyzers come in handy.
After determining your primary keywords, AI-powered SEO tools like Semrush can review your site’s content against top-ranking competitors and assess your keywords’ effectiveness. It can also give helpful tips like keyword and content gaps, ideas for rounding out individual pieces of content, backlink analytics, and SEO site audit tools to identify overall improvements to your website.
Find out more about how SEO can help grow your business in our guide to search engine marketing.
9. Moderating Content
One of the most helpful cases of using AI in marketing is in moderating user-generated content (UGC). A staple in any good social media strategy, UGC gives your audience a sense of community, converting them into loyal customers. However, its primary drawback is that not all content generated by your community is of the best quality, which is where content moderation is necessary.
Artificial intelligence software can easily review thousands of pieces of content in seconds, then filter them based on specific parameters, such as profanity or offensive language. AI is even increasingly able to moderate images and video as well as text, saving you plenty of time and effort.
10. Personalizing Chatbots
Part of good marketing—and good customer service—is responding to customers’ queries quickly. A helpful solution for this is AI-powered chatbots. Customer service AI chatbots provide helpful solutions to various customer issues, but for marketing, they’re a valuable asset to guide each customer’s buying journey.
The GoDaddy website builder, for example, comes with two artificial intelligence chatbots. One is a “hello” bot that greets website visitors and can help to direct them, while the other is an “orders” chatbot designed to field customer queries about orders. Both can provide immediate assistance as well as capture site visitors’ queries and forward them to your team for follow-up.
Whether as pop-ups on your small business website or even on Facebook Messenger, AI chatbots can give customers personalized responses and recommendations to their inquiries, guiding them through the customer journey. This helps generate more leads with less effort.
Key takeaway: Chatbots don’t just save you time and effort—-they’re also good at what they do. According to Statista, 30% of U.S. consumers found chatbots to be very effective at resolving issues.
11. Creating Videos
Videos are essential in any marketing strategy, with reports stating they help increase return on investment (ROI) by up to 92%. And while the traditional video-making process takes time and effort—from creating scripts to editing the final video—new AI software is gradually simplifying that process.
While still in the early stages, AI-powered video tools can generate simple videos from text. And while they don’t yet have the complexity of full-scale TV productions, they help create short how-tos, product demos, onboarding instructions, and the like, which are valuable for small businesses. Some AI tools can even provide voice-overs for videos.
12. Streamlining Market Research
Part of crafting an impactful marketing strategy is understanding the playing field, which can take even the most capable marketers days and weeks to analyze. However, AI makes crunching all those numbers easier than ever. It can easily pick up and analyze past market trends to predict future outcomes and even offer recommendations to maximize your growth.
This data can also be coupled with automated integrations like automatic drip email campaigns or push notifications based on certain parameters like customer behavior, substantially saving you time.
Key takeaway: While new, AI is already making a significant impact on marketing. In recent years, 41% of marketers found that using AI in marketing increased revenue and performance. Meanwhile, 38% of marketers used AI to create personalized customer experiences.
What Is AI & Why Is It Important?
Short for “artificial intelligence,” AI refers to technology that mimics human intelligence to perform tasks or solve problems independently. Some examples of AI are digital assistants like Amazon’s Alexa, facial recognition on mobile phones, website chatbots, and the ChatGPT chatbot. Essentially, AI is any technology that thinks and solves problems by itself, without human help or input.
Thanks to its advanced capabilities, artificial intelligence is increasingly expanding its influence in business applications like sales and marketing. In particular, AI is increasingly taking over routine tasks like automating workflows and organizing large amounts of data. Here are some of the most notable benefits of using AI:
- Simpler data organization
- Instant data analysis and trend predictions
- More streamlined processes via automations
- Easier customer engagement and communications
- Fewer workflow errors
AI’s impact on businesses is wide and varied. While the above show a general overview of its benefits, artificial intelligence tools are constantly evolving to better meet businesses’ and customers’ needs.
Key takeaway: AI is any technology that can solve tasks or make decisions the same way humans do. It’s also a growing market, with 35% of the world’s businesses using it to upgrade their processes—a figure likely to continue growing.
Best AI Tools for Small Business Marketing
As the above AI marketing use cases show, it’s increasingly becoming a valuable part of any marketer’s toolkit. For everything from optimizing websites to making recommendations for growth, there are various AI-powered tools and software that any small business owner can use.
Here are some of the most helpful tools with AI for small business marketing:
- For website-building: Visit Wix. Topping our list of the best small business website builders, Wix stands out for its AI-powered website generator, automatically creating a professionally designed website based on your prompts. In addition, there’s an AI writing assistant that offers suggestions to help speed up the process as you create content for your website.
- For targeted email marketing: Visit Rasa.io. One of the best cases of using AI in marketing is in personalized messaging, which is what Rasa.io does for email marketing. Its AI integrates with email marketing tools like Mailchimp and HubSpot to automatically curate email content based on each customer’s unique interests and needs.
- For organizing data: Visit Levity. Levity offers easy data organization for several use cases, from identifying leads in emails to monitoring social media performance. It acts as a personal assistant, sifting through large amounts of data and organizing them based on specific criteria. It’s especially helpful for organizing your emails based on the stages of the customer journey and for optimizing your social media content.
- For creating videos: Visit Steve.ai. A leading software in the field, Steve.ai makes video creation possible in just a few minutes, even for beginners with no video editing experience. Its AI easily converts text and audio into professional videos in just a few clicks—from corporate videos to marketing and social media assets.
- For brand design: Visit Looka. One of our overall best sites for logo design, Looka is one of the most helpful design tools for small business owners due to its easy-to-use design generator. From business logos to full-scale brand kits, Looka’s AI can help even complete design beginners create professional designs in minutes.
With the right AI tools, you can do a lot more than just generate copy or process data. Find the best sources for all your AI content needs in our look at the best AI content generation tools.
Frequently Asked Questions
AI can streamline small business processes in sales, marketing, accounting, and customer service. It can automate tasks like sales pipeline management, customer data organization, and basic accounting tasks like paying bills and calculating payroll. It can also help create and moderate content, predict market trends, and create personalized marketing campaigns.
For small business marketing, AI can be used to build and optimize websites, generate content, craft personalized email and social media campaigns, and analyze market data. Overall, using AI in small business marketing is helpful for analyzing complex marketing data (such as customer behavior or market trends) and taking over more routine tasks like content moderation or one-on-one customer communication.
Over 30% of small businesses currently use AI, according to a study by Unbounce. Businesses primarily use AI to create campaigns, write marketing copies, and optimize websites. The study also found that of those businesses, 92% said using AI tools helped reduce costs.
While using AI in marketing is still in its early stages, it’s already rapidly transforming how industries work. With AI increasingly taking on more routine tasks, humans are free to spend more time on the more significant and consequential decisions in the workplace. Ultimately, it all comes down to seeing how AI can best serve your business’ interests and finding the optimum balance between technology and human capabilities.