AI is already a part of our everyday lives. And, as a business owner, it’s something that should be on your mind. Implementing AI into your business will help you stay ahead of the competition. Here’s how to do it.
Get familiar with AI
The first thing you need to do is get familiar with the term “AI” and its various definitions. Some marketers use the term “intelligent automation,” others prefer “machine learning.” The reality is that there are many ways to describe AI—and it’s important for business owners and executives to know what their teams mean when they use these terms.
It is also important to get familiar with the benefits and drawbacks of AI, particularly for your business. AI can help create efficiencies, but it’s important to be realistic about how much you can automate and how quickly you can do it. It’s better that you know your limitations upfront rather than discover them later on.
Identify the problems you want AI to solve
Once you understand the basics of what AI means for your business, think about which problems you’re hoping to solve. Are there certain processes that take a long time — but don’t necessarily require human-level intelligence? Those are great places to start with your AI strategy.
For example, if your marketing department creates a lot of content, you can use AI to make a calendar of blog post ideas or find broken links. Similarly, you might ask yourself: Which processes are error-prone? Can machine learning help improve the accuracy of those processes? If your team spends time manually analyzing customer data for insights, AI could take over that process and deliver better results.
Find processes that can be automated
Once you know which processes are giving you the most trouble, try to think of ways AI can be used to complete those tasks. A useful approach is to get your team together and brainstorm about each process. For example, if your sales department has a lot of manual work that could be automated, get it in the room with marketing and customer services. Together, you might discover that certain processes can be streamlined by bringing the customer service and marketing teams together to meet with customers.
Test and optimize
There’s no reason to dive into AI and machine learning if you don’t need to. If it makes sense for your business, start with one process and see how automation can help your team improve efficiency. You will probably discover that the task is easy to automate—but hard to execute correctly. For example, you could use Google Translate to translate a document into another language for a supplier. However, you will find better accuracy with a dedicated language service provider. For more information, search online for ‘what is a language service provider‘.
Include storage as part of your AI plan
AI is inherently data-driven, so you need to think about where you’re going to store all this new information. Depending on your business, AI could generate a lot of data—and more than you can afford to lose. Consider how many redundancy and backup options you have in place today for customer data.