A Few Ways to Unlock Generative AI for Your Small Business on AWS | AWS Smart Business Blog

It seems nearly every startup or enterprise company is rushing to implement generative AI, but what about those somewhere in the middle? If you run a small or medium business (SMB), you might be envious of the funding and headcount other companies have for AI initiatives. But to compete in this new era of business, you’re also thinking about how you can implement something cost-effective that gets you to market as fast as reasonably possible.

The good news is that you’re not alone. According to TechAisle, the use of generative AI is rapidly increasing within US SMBs and mid-market firms. The survey found that AI has become a top ten priority for SMBs. More than three-quarters of SMBs with 100 or more employees report using AI already. Among 4,600 surveyed SMBs and midmarket firms, 60 percent of SMBs are currently using and experimenting with AI, but only 14 percent have deployed AI applications into production.

In this blog post, I will share a few generative AI apps SMBs can build or buy to achieve better operational efficiency and why Amazon Web Services is uniquely positioned to help your business scale.

Finding it difficult to keep up with the volume of customer questions? SMBs such as yours are likely spread thin and repetitive questions or requests can be addressed while your human agents work on higher-value issues. The first use case we recommend is an AI-powered virtual agent that can interact with your website or app customers in a basic conversation. There are two ways to roll this out for your business:

When you’re running a small business, you can find yourself mired in the burden of administrative tasks, such as sharing meeting notes, creating executive summaries, writing documentation, and other activities that don’t directly impact the bottom line. Larger companies can delegate administrative tasks, but your small team can’t easily do so.

Enter Amazon Q Business. It’s a generative AI-powered assistant that can answer employee questions, provide summaries, generate content, and securely complete tasks based on data and information in your system. In essence, it allows employees—regardless of technical proficiency—to ask questions of the data contained within your cloud.

If you’re an existing customer with an AWS account running other cloud services, you can log into AWS Management Console, then create a generative AI app with Amazon Q Business. There are built in “connectors” for Amazon Simple Storage Service, and websites, as well as third-party apps like Microsoft SharePoint, Jira, Zendesk, and Salesforce. You can setup recurring update cycles for this data so answers are up-to-date. Your employees can then use Amazon Q Business through a secure webpage or use APIs to access throughout your own business apps.

The last area which we see a lot of interest is around using data to augment creative content for sales and marketing campaigns. AI can generate multiple design prototypes

based on certain inputs and constraints, and optimize existing designs based on user

feedback, to increase speed of production. Marketers at SMBs can use it to generate written content such as blog posts, social media posts, and emails, while media companies can use it to

create graphics, special effects, scripts, dialogues, and stories for multiple formats.

With Amazon Q, login to Console and attach data sources—such as research, personas, and other attributes—to be used specifically for sales and marketing content. Create secure web access to your generative AI app for sales and marketing employees to prompt the creation of virtual assets to promote your business.

AWS makes it easy to build and scale generative AI customized for your data, your use cases, and your customers. More specifically, AI tools allow small businesses in any industry to analyze and garner insights from their own data, generate original content, and much more. With AWS, you have access to the following benefits:

As you read, AWS is investing in the creation of innovative generative AI-powered applications which help you connect data sources, create generative AI applications, and securely share your generative AI app with teams and customers. With AWS you have access to more generative AI capabilities through an expanding library of LLM models, services with AI baked in, and an expanding library of open-source solutions. Furthermore, generative AI data on AWS is designed to never leave your account—you are in control of how data is used and with whom.

We recognize SMBs do not have unlimited funds for investing in new technology. That’s why the pay-as-you-go model for generative AI LMMs and cloud services makes generative AI accessible to many—regardless of company size.

These are just a few of the simple ways small businesses can use AWS generative AI services and partners in their everyday business practices. Look for future articles, where we explore how to use generative AI to enhance builder productivity and how to enhance your customer service capabilities. Learn more about how you can make your SMB a smart business or contact us directly to take the next steps.

Johanna Wood is a Sr. Product Manager for the worldwide SMB team at AWS. She is a technical expert who’s skilled at facilitating communication with internal and external stakeholders of all backgrounds. She enjoys creating technology solutions to solve business problems for companies modernizing their operations in the cloud. Johanna has over two decades of experience and has also worked for respected companies such as Veritas Technologies and Symantec. She has is based in Boston (US) and holds a Management Information Systems degree from Western Illinois University.