Let's Talk Business: Can AI help your small business? – Emporia Gazette

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Updated: September 4, 2023 @ 7:49 am

In early August, we talked about the advantages of AI in this column. Today, however, we’ll play contrarian. While there are many tasks that artificial intelligence can perform, some jobs are best left to humans.
Experts are discovering new tasks that AI can perform every day. However, there’s limited value in using AI to take on certain business tasks — and in many instances, a human touch can significantly improve the customer experience. Ultimately, AI is best deployed as a tool for automating mundane, repetitive tasks. Anything more advanced is better suited to human intervention.
There are parts of customer service that AI can improve. For instance, a chatbot installed on your company’s website can help answer basic questions and troubleshoot simple issues. And they can be available 24/7 to help customers find the information they need. But any time a customer concern goes beyond a bot’s training, it should immediately be routed to a live support agent.
AI can generate blog posts, write marketing emails, distribute content on social media, and even create images and videos. But it can’t ensure this content will resonate with your customers.
AI can help you create content, but it doesn’t automatically create results. It’s up to your team to know your audience inside and out. Only those involved in your business on a deeper level can set goals, interact with your customers day to day, and perform quality control to ensure content is unique to your brand identity.
Hiring is another area where AI can automate repetitive tasks, such as interview scheduling, skill testing, and posting open positions on different job boards. But AI can’t find the right fit for your unique business culture. It also can’t personify your employer brand and convince a candidate to accept your job offer.
Likewise, you’ll need a real person to help meet your employees’ needs. “It’s kind of in the name — but your company’s Human Resources department will likely always need a human at the helm to manage interpersonal conflict with the help of non-cognitive and reasoning skills,” wrote HubSpot.
Tools like ChatGPT and Bard can create content fast, but there are quality issues — and possible copyright infringement risks — that can damage a small business’s reputation.
It’s essential to have an editor or copywriter look over AI-generated content before releasing it to the public. AI tools sometimes include errors, bad or repetitive syntax, and poor grammar. It can also lead to questions of plagiarism if you don’t have a human review the content. Any content generated by AI should be tailored to your unique brand voice. Only a human can ensure that your content is consistent, cohesive, and compliant.
The Emporia Area Chamber of Commerce offers many resources to help you start, run, and grow your business–including our annual Leadership Emporia Academy, monthly Group Lunches, Ribbon Cuttings, Business After Hours events, Legislative Dialogues, and more. Stop by the Trusler Business Center at 719 Commercial St., call 620-342-1600, or visit our website at www.emporiakschamber.org to learn more.
“Let’s Talk Business” is a weekly column of the Emporia Area Chamber of Commerce and Visit Emporia. The mission of the Chamber is to be proactive in creating an environment for business and community success, guided by the vision that positive attitudes promote positive actions. Contact us at 620-342-1600 or chamber@emporiakschamber.org and visit our website at www.emporiakschamber.org.
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