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How small businesses can use ChatGPT

A man holding his chin, looking at his phone.

“How can I help you today?” Chat GPT asks as the cursor blinks below a list of prompts. Maybe you type, “Help me write a social media post for Facebook,” or “Can you write an email to our customers about an upcoming spring promotion of 20% off their purchase?”

As you hit the return key, ChatGPT immediately gets to work, carefully spitting out content to (hopefully) meet your request or asking you for more information to craft the perfect social post or email campaign.

Sounds incredible, right?

While ChatGPT can help small businesses with many tasks, there are also several things to consider if you want to implement artificial intelligence (AI) into your small business. In this article, we’ll cover how to use ChatGPT, along with some caveats and risks to look out for.

Ways to use ChatGPT in your business

From streamlining processes and enhancing operations, small businesses can incorporate ChatGPT in many ways.

  • Better customer service and support. Businesses can incorporate ChatGPT into their customer service systems to provide quick responses to questions. This helps reduce response times and can help improve satisfaction and engagement.

  • Quick content creation. ChatGPT can help generate content when it comes to social posts, blog posts or product descriptions, which helps save time and resources.

  • Enhanced research and analysis. ChatGPT can analyze large volumes of data, like customer reviews, so businesses can better understand market trends and customer preferences.

  • Personalized communication. Businesses can use ChatGPT to create customized emails or messages based on the customer’s purchasing history. This helps customers feel valued, which is a great way for businesses to stand out.

  • Streamlined operations. ChatGPT can automate repetitive tasks, such as answering FAQs, scheduling appointments or even managing order processes.

ChatGPT enables small businesses to reduce costs and improve efficiency. While those two outcomes sound like a no-brainer when it comes to integrating AI into everyday processes, overreliance comes with significant risks.

The potential pitfalls of using ChatGPT in your business

ChatGPT offers numerous advantages and benefits for small businesses. But it’s important to remember that it can also introduce some caveats. Here are a few things to keep in mind if you want to start using ChatGPT:

  • Privacy and security. Small businesses must treat their data—including their customers’ data—with the utmost protection. As with any third party, there’s a risk of sensitive information being exposed through automation.

  • Misinformation and limited context. Keep in mind that AI responds to you based upon the data it’s been trained on, and it may be unable to fully understand a complex or nuanced question. Misinterpretations can lead to the spread of misinformation, which can harm your business’s reputation.

  • Dependency and overreliance. Businesses that rely heavily on AI can quickly become dependent on their use. If the system fails or encounters issues, your business can become disrupted.

  • Lack of human touch. If your business relies on customer relationships and personalized service, incorporating ChatGPT has the potential to move that in the opposite direction. AI doesn’t have feelings and can’t express empathy, which can lead to a lack of personal touch with your customers.

  • Regulatory and compliance issues. Depending on your business sector—especially if you’re in finance or healthcare, providing advice or information through AI could violate industry regulations.

If you choose to use ChatGPT in your business, you must make sure that you’re double-checking information or facts produced by AI. While it seems like an answered prayer for AI to develop a quick blog post or financial report, it’s up to you to give it that human touch—and to confirm its validity.

Striking a balance

As with any new technology that promises to move mountains for your business, you must also take it with a grain of salt. No technology is perfect—not even ChatGPT (sorry, ChatGPT, but it’s true). Make sure your business is transparent about the use of AI and let your humans handle complex or sensitive issues that may come up. The key to success is balancing the use of AI with human supervision. AI may do things more quickly, but humans provide the personal touch that customers look for and respond to.