With Help of Magisto, Small Businesses Reach Customers with Video

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AI technology is finding its footing in the small business market, years after it reached critical mass among big brands. A new app from Magisto is using AI to streamline video creation and help small businesses more effectively engage audiences on social media.

Magisto’s Chant app is designed for business owners who aren’t familiar with video as a marketing medium. The company says it’s the first template-style solution that streamlines video creation and allows for total customization. But Magisto CEO Oren Boiman says the Chant app does more than just boost businesses’ growth on social. It also levels the playing field for small businesses looking to drive the same kinds of engagement as larger organizations.

“We’ve done a great deal of research over the past several years that has shown the effectiveness of video marketing in today’s social media landscape. Authenticity is what drives connection and engagement with audiences, and through video, entrepreneurs have the ability to scale their personal presence and create the type of storytelling that demonstrates authenticity,” Boiman says. “While large corporations and brands have the budgets and the expertise to create video marketing campaigns, millions of small business entrepreneurs lack both and have an acute need to solve their video marketing challenge affordably, efficiently and with high quality.”

Video production has traditionally been the domain of larger corporations with sizable budgets, because it’s costly and time-consuming to create, produce, distribute, and measure. But beyond basic video production, Boiman says Magisto’s research found that SMBs also struggle with finding the right creative ideas and finding the content to fit those ideas. Chant takes users through all the steps involved in video production, with a large collection of video ideas in the form of templates.

“These templates already contain all the content needed to tell the stories, and Chant adds the flexibility to adjust the stories to the users’ specific business voice through images, videos, and texts. These adjusted templates are then turned into professionally produced videos that can directly be distributed, through Chant, to the relevant social networks,” Boiman says. “Chant does all the heavy lifting so the business owner can focus on growth.”

AI has a role in the app, as well. Chant gathers data to deepen the company’s understanding of what works and what doesn’t in the context of today’s social conversations. That information is then relayed to users, and the AI algorithms provide specifically tailored pieces of advice based on each user’s individual activities.

Given how quickly the social media and communication landscapes are evolving, it should come as no surprise that Chant already has competitors in the market. Boiman sees one competitor as Adobe Premiere, but says that solution can be overly-complicated and time-consuming for small businesses. That’s the problem with most video creation apps, in Boiman’s view. People have to be masters, or creative professionals, to make great videos with them, and most entrepreneurs are not tech experts.

Boiman says there are also some template solutions, like Shakr and Promo. These services allow for quick video production, but he says they also require users to mold their messages to fit the template, and that can result in off-brand video content. Magisto is betting that using AI will give Chant an edge, especially among users who need a little guidance along the way.

“As Chant users get feedback and increase their understanding of effective content usage, they’ll continue to create better and better video content,” he says. “In turn, we will receive more and better data which we use to create new strategies and improve AI algorithms, initiating a continual loop of improvement. As our users succeed with increasingly effective content, the AI learns and Chant becomes a better, more intuitive product.”

Stephanie Miles is a senior editor at Street Fight.

Stephanie Miles is a journalist who covers personal finance, technology, and real estate. As Street Fight’s senior editor, she is particularly interested in how local merchants and national brands are utilizing hyperlocal technology to reach consumers. She has written for FHM, the Daily News, Working World, Gawker, Cityfile, and Recessionwire.