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Unlock the power of generative AI for your small business

Take your small business to the next level with generative AI

5 min read

Digital TechnologyMarketingMarketing Strategy

Small business owners using digital tools


This post is sponsored by Adobe.

Generative AI is intrinsically related to the future of digital work. With technological advancements, small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) can become faster and smarter as they modernize how they work. Breakthroughs in generative AI solutions can inspire creativity, increase productivity, provide exceptional customer service, and improve overall efficiency. 

Goldman Sachs Research predicts generative AI will raise global GDP by 7% (or approximately $7 trillion) and productivity by 1.5 percentage points over a decade. However, the Adobe Future of Digital Work Study shows that only a third of small businesses are currently using AI in the workplace. Yet, most employees (92%) at AI-savvy small businesses say it’s having a positive impact such as saving time (61%), helping employees work faster (56%), and reducing tedious work (43%).

From content creation and marketing to product design and development, generative AI has the potential to transform businesses of all sizes. SMBs can succeed in a competitive market by growing, automating, and streamlining. 

SMBs can use generative AI to improve workflows

AI solutions offer SMBs several advantages to compete in a digital world. Generative AI can be a marketing and creative co-pilot that supercharges the ideation process, amplifies human ingenuity, and builds creative confidence by removing barriers between imagination and the blank page.

  • Content creation – develop marketing copy and content to engage target audiences. 
  • Improved efficiency and productivity – repetitive tasks can be automated to free up time for strategic, high-level tasks.
  • Enhanced creativity and innovation – leveraging AI to power growth and inspire teams.
  • Cost savings – SMBs can increase revenue by optimizing spending.

Using AI will help small businesses scale and grow without the commensurate increase in salary costs. SMBs can maximize resources and increase employee satisfaction and productivity by automating processes or speeding up content development. 

Creating content that isn’t just a push, but actually engages users has historically taken a lot of time and effort. Using tools, such as Adobe Express with Firefly capabilities can speed this up. SMBs don’t have to be experts to create visually stunning content that is meaningful. This is an area where non-creative professionals can actually get involved for the first time and for creative professionals, these tools allow SMBs to focus on real artistic expression, rather than basic content creation. Ultimately accomplishing a better customer experience.

SMBs can also leverage AI to improve customer support. Customer service tasks such as responding to inquiries and complaints can be automated with AI. Businesses can also provide customer service 24 hours a day by implementing AI chatbots and utilizing geofluence to create answers to frequently asked questions. Customer data can be analyzed by AI for personalized recommendations. 

Overcoming challenges in generative AI implementation

While generative AI benefits are clear, there are challenges to consider as well, such as data quality, privacy, technical knowledge, and costs. 

The first challenge faced by SMBs is to not get overwhelmed with choice. SMBs need to decide what is the problem or opportunity they’re trying to solve for. Is it to improve customer service? Improve marketing? Or is it attracting new customers or trying to keep more customers? SMBs have to figure out where in the process to focus first. 

Once identified, business owners can focus on creating an action plan that includes a timeline for implementation, a budget, and measurable goals. 

In a digital world, where AI is used by many small businesses for customer service, SMBs must remember to implement generative AI thoughtfully and with ethical considerations in mind. SMBs should start with an AI Ethics framework that respects customer data, content, and data transparency as well as aligns with company values.

It is essential to choose an AI partner that uses best-practices to eliminate any bias in the algorithms, which if not done correctly can create discriminatory issues rather than solve them. It is important for business owners to work with providers who are transparent, accountable, and believe in what they do. As a result, trust is built. Moreover, to remain compliant with all applicable regulations, SMBs need to understand the legal implications of AI solutions. 

Advice for SMBs considering generative AI

First, think small, then scale. Simplify the processes. Generative AI can be overwhelming if SMBs don’t have the resources or expertise to handle it. Start by doing one thing at a time, measuring it, then moving on to the next task. 

Adobe is focused not only on helping small businesses survive in the current economy, but also thrive. Small businesses need help standing out from the competition on the front end, where content creation is essential. A lot of work is going into improving workflows so they are more template-based and mobile-friendly, something that anyone can use.

Using Adobe Document Cloud helps SMBs and managers accomplish business goals and manage productivity through commenting tools, storage, organization, and security features. The creation, editing, sharing, and management of documents will streamline processes for SMBs in one multi-purpose app.

Adobe Express makes it easy for business owners  to create and share content for social media, as well as PDFs, images, posters, logos, and more. Adobe Firefly is now built into Express workflows, allowing users to rapidly generate unique designs that pique clients’ interests.

With Adobe Scan, SMBs can automate processes such as paper to digital conversion, electronic signatures, and invoice scanning. Through Adobe Creative Cloud tutorials, SMBs are empowered to grow their skills and integrate generative AI solutions into their workflows. It helps SMBs prioritize efforts, utilize their resources effectively, and grow profitably by identifying areas where artificial intelligence can make the biggest impact. 

Adobe is changing the world through digital experiences. For more information, visit