There has never been a better, easier time to start a business.
Artificial intelligence technology is chipping away at the barriers to entry for aspiring entrepreneurs, which represent a meaningful segment of the U.S. population. A 2021 survey conducted by Harris Poll found that 61 percent of Americans have an idea for a business, but are stymied by a lack of access to business tools and knowledge on how to get started. The founders behind a new crop of A.I.-powered platforms envision a world where, instead of needing an MBA, you can leverage technology to help launch your business.
For burgeoning entrepreneurs looking for an all-in-one platform to provide guidance and assistance in starting a business, there’s Tailor Brands, which launched in 2014 as a simple logo creator before adding additional features designed to help entrepreneurs start a small businesses. Requiring just a brand name and some basic information about the status of the business, the system can create a custom to-do list for founders, including items such as securing a domain name, launching a website, registering as an LLC, and obtaining trademark approvals.
Tailor Brands CEO Yali Saar hopes that by providing a framework for people to build their businesses, entrepreneurs will have more time to spend perfecting their specific product or service. “We’re trying to create a world where building your business is easy, and you’re actually measured by the quality of your product or service,” says Saar.
One service not currently offered by Tailor Brands is copywriting. Making sure that your social media content and advertising is SEO-friendly and finely curated to your target audience is key if you want to increase awareness of your brand and grow. One company offering such services is Pluralytics, a “content intelligence solutions” platform founded in 2020 to help companies discover their “brand voice” and ensure that their messaging is always pinpointed to engage their target audience.
The Pluralytics algorithm assigns a “value” to every single word in a given post, such as “confident” or “energized,” and then scores that post against a custom benchmark set up to replicate the values of the post’s intended audience, according to co-founder Alisa Miller. Business owners can then turn their copywriting into a science, using data to ensure that every word is as effective as possible at converting ad-viewers into customers. As an example, Miller says that the algorithm can determine the subtle differences between words with the same meaning, such as “give” vs “donate.”
While Pluralytics can be useful for improving content that’s already been written, Jasper, which bills itself as an “AI content platform,” goes even further by creating fully original material from scratch. Founders can choose from a large variety of templates, such as “video script” or “real estate listing,” and then submit a brief description of the intended message. The program then crafts a custom piece of copy in the style of the founder’s choosing.
According to CEO and co-founder Dave Rogenmoser, Jasper can’t fully create perfect posts yet, as most need some editing and cleanup done after the fact, but he estimates that the program gets most clients “around 80 percent of the way there.” For some entrepreneurs, Rogenmoser says, more helpful than automating copywriting is simply eliminating the feeling of staring at a blank page and not knowing where to start.
What might be the broader impact of these kinds of tools on the business world? According to Tailor Brands’ Saar, “we’re going to see independent businesses become a larger portion of the economy because of these AI platforms, which are allowing independents to do everything they need to do on their own.”