…and Make Your Business More Efficient
If you’ve been interacting with other businesses this week, whether online or offline, there’s a good chance that you encountered a piece of artificial intelligence.
Automated checkout machines, advanced CRM systems, virtual assistant programs, and other such technological advances are replacing human labor in many areas. Making good use of these can give you a potent competitive edge – but misusing them can also cost you customers.
Today, I’m going to reveal three ways in which artificial intelligence and modern technology can save you time, and give you some tips for avoiding the pitfalls that can come with them.
Artificial Intelligence Time-saver #1: Use CRM to automate your marketing and follow-ups.
CRM, or Customer Relationship Management software, can automate a lot of the repetitive tasks that people used to do manually.
Examples of these tasks include:
- Thanking clients for a purchase.
- Detecting abandoned carts, and encouraging people to complete their purchase.
- Automatically sending email newsletters to your subscribers at pre-specified times, or pre-set intervals.
- Creating assignments for your team to follow up with leads when those leads fill out a form.
- Sending different emails to different leads, based on behavior like clicking or not clicking on a link.
Mistakes to avoid:
While good CRM can save you a lot of time, it can come with a few pitfalls, such as:
Neglecting the people who are actively reaching out to you.
If you meet someone at a networking event, they put out the effort to reach out to you personally, and the only response they get is an invitation to subscribe to your newsletter, it will probably NOT be the start of a beautiful friendship.
The point of CRM software is to automate repetitive, impersonal tasks, not to replace personal connections.
Not testing your system.
Have you ever had a time when you read someone’s promotional email, and you were very curious about what they had to say, or highly interested in their product… but when you tried to click the link, all you got was a broken page?
It can be tempting to just set up your CRM system and call it good, but if you don’t test it, you’ll have a big blind spot that can be home to any number of sales-killing malfunctions.
Artificial Intelligence Time-saver #2: Keep track of your day with virtual personal assistants.
Virtual personal assistants are another of the many Artificial Intelligence tools you can use to make your business more efficient.
They can watch your calendar, track meetings and events, and give you a daily digest of your deadlines, to-dos, and appointments, as well as bringing up all the emails, files, and other information you need during those events.
This can free you from the requirement to constantly check your calendar, and the need to scramble to gather data in time for the event.
Mistakes to avoid:
While this technology is great to have, don’t become overly reliant on it. If a single computer crash or technological malfunction could effectively mindwipe your entire database and bring your work to a screeching halt, you’re leaving your business dangerously vulnerable.
Always make sure you have backups of your important information in a place where you can access them if your primary computer malfunctions, and that you’ll still be able to use the software and tools you need.
Artificial Intelligence Time-saver #3: Use automated sales assistants to handle simple sales conversations
Artificial Intelligence programs such as Conversica can actually hold two-way conversations with your leads for you, so instead of having your sales team chase every single prospect, your salespeople can focus on the leads who have already been pre-qualified.
This enables them to make more sales, because instead of having to nurture each and every lead from start to finish, they can focus all of their time on the people who are nearly ready to buy.
Mistakes to avoid:
Don’t become so reliant on technology that it becomes impossible for people to reach a real human at your business.
Sometimes, people will have questions or concerns that your A.I.’s programming doesn’t cover, and they’ll need an actual person to help with their problem.
If they can’t get the help they need, they’ll feel neglected, frustrated, and possibly even ripped off – and their reviews of your company will reflect that.
Use your automated correspondence to handle the basics, but always make it easy for your customers to access the right people and get answers to their more complicated inquiries.
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