Shawn Herring: Marketing Automation and AI Shift for SME's - Bumper Leads

Shawn Herring is the Chief Marketing Officer at and in this episode, Shawn is sharing the findings from a recent survey they ran with small business owners. In today’s episode, you will learn how SME’s are embracing automation and AI to supercharge their businesses.

Shawn leads the airSlate global marketing team, driving the strategy for demand generation, product marketing, branding, communications, and sales development. Over the course of his 20+ years of experience in marketing, Shawn believes an integrated approach to marketing plays a critical role within the revenue team. With experience in leading Marketing teams from startup (<$10M) to scale up ($10M – $500M), Shawn appreciates a learning curve and respects the process of testing methods and strategies without fear of being wrong.

In this episode, Jovana and Shawn discuss the findings of the report that are surprisingly different to what we’re used to seeing. Automation is no longer the new buzz word, it’s the new standard for small businesses who are looking to supercharge their productivity.

You can download the report here –  How embracing automation helps businesses supercharge productivity.

Tune in to our Spotify stream to learn more about the findings.


[00:02:48] AI automation and human intervention

[00:03:45] Small businesses embracing AI

[00:10:21] Automation and business maturity

[00:11:22] Automating mundane tasks

[00:15:20] AI SWAT team – a cool idea to get your team onboard with AI

[00:19:57] Embracing a 4-day work week using automation

[00:22:01] Automation and shorter work week

[00:26:39] SMBs with bigger tech stacks

[00:29:45] High converting websites – check out


Marketing Automation and AI – Small Businesses proving to be early adopters


From our experience, small businesses have traditionally been hesitant to embrace Automation and AI, but recent findings suggest that this is changing. In this episode, we discuss a brand new report on marketing Automation and AI for small businesses.

airSlate’s report aimed to understand how small businesses are embracing automation and whether they are receptive to AI technologies. The findings were surprising, as it was discovered that small businesses are actually leading the charge when it comes to adopting automation and AI. In fact, over 90% of small businesses surveyed are using AI and automation in some capacity.

This shift in attitude towards automation and AI can be attributed to the increasing accessibility of these technologies. Herring notes that the democratization of technology has made it easier for small businesses to tap into automation tools and AI capabilities. In addition, the emergence of AI technologies, such as ChatGPT, has made automation more appealing and “sexy” for business owners.

However, we know that automation has been around for a long time. Herring mentions that even before the rise of AI, small businesses were slowly becoming more accepting of automation. The accessibility and advancements in automation tools have been a driving force behind this acceptance.

The report’s findings highlight the significant role that automation and AI play in small businesses’ operations. It is no longer just a concept that they are considering; it has become an integral part of their business strategies. Small businesses are leveraging automation and AI to streamline their sales and marketing systems, save time and money, and scale their businesses faster.

The increased adoption of automation and AI by small businesses is proving to be a positive trend. These technologies have the potential to level the playing field for small businesses, allowing them to compete more efficiently with larger enterprises. By automating repetitive tasks and leveraging AI capabilities, small businesses can focus on more strategic initiatives and drive growth.

The report’s findings highlight the significant role that automation and AI play in small businesses’ operations, and it is expected that this trend will continue to grow in the future.

Tune into the show to listen now




Frequently Asked Questions About Automation and AI


Why are small businesses embracing automation and AI?

Small businesses are increasingly adopting automation and AI due to the growing accessibility of these technologies. The democratization of technology has made it easier for small businesses to leverage automation tools and AI capabilities. Additionally, advancements in AI technologies, such as ChatGPT, have made automation more appealing and practical for business owners.

How has the pandemic influenced small businesses’ adoption of automation?

The pandemic has accelerated the adoption of automation among small businesses. It shifted the mindset from viewing automation as a “nice-to-have” to a necessity. Small businesses realized the importance of automating essential tasks, such as processing documents and sending invoices, to save time and focus on revenue-generating activities.

At what point does automation become essential for scaling a business?

Automation becomes essential for scaling a business, especially when it reaches the $1 million mark in recurring revenue. At this stage, automating mundane tasks and cost centers, such as employee onboarding and HR processes, becomes crucial for further growth.

How does automation contribute to work-life balance for small businesses?

Automation plays a key role in enabling work-life balance by streamlining processes and reducing manual work. Automation allows employees to complete tasks more efficiently, freeing up time for personal pursuits. This is particularly relevant in the context of the changing perspective on a shorter workweek.

How can small businesses ensure successful automation implementation?

Successful automation implementation requires understanding processes, having dedicated individuals or teams responsible for automation, and fostering cross-functional collaboration. Ownership and process understanding are crucial for effective automation. The more a business understands its processes and has ownership, the more it can automate.

How do small businesses balance the use of automation tools with their workforce?

Small businesses balance the use of automation tools by focusing on building adaptable tech stacks instead of traditional departmental organizational structures. This approach allows businesses to be more agile, efficient, and competitive, even with a smaller workforce. The right tech stack empowers SMBs to compete with larger organizations.



Technology can be overwhelming, there is just too much choice for business owners to consider. Every week, we’ll be sharing how you can identify what technology is a good fit for your business and how to use automation to grow your business. We are on a mission to simplify marketing automation technology so you can feel in control of growing your business.


Here are 3 ways we can help you grow your business:


1. Check out our socials for free marketing tips that you can implement in your business today. We share marketing advice regularly here: ⁠⁠⁠Instagram⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠Facebook⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠LinkedIn⁠⁠⁠, X. You can also tune into our Podcast on Spotify – Marketing Automation Made Simple.


2. Done-With-You Training – With our personalized training, you can have your very own Marketing Growth System that attracts customers to your business automatically and helps you sell more products and services. Book a chat on our website at if you’re interested in setting up your sales and marketing system in house, with our guidance.


3. The Bumper Blueprint™– Work with me and my team privately Our Bumper Blueprint™ clarifies your sales & marketing process so customers buy more products & services from you. If you’re a Small to Medium sized business we can help you save time and money by simplifying your sales and marketing systems. We work with you through 1:1 strategy consulting, implementation and online training.


Further Reading


Mastering Email Content Using Cialdini’s 6 Principles of Persuasion

Top 5 Things AI Can Do For Your Business

Mastering ChatGPT Prompts for Content Creation

How to Automate an Online Sales Funnel



Jovana Vujnic

Jovana Vujnic

Head Honcho | Marketing Automation Expert | Evil Twin Sister


Jovana is the Founder of Bumper Leads - a marketing automation agency that helps businesses simplify and automate their sales and marketing systems to help them save time and money.

She is a former body builder turned fast food junkie turned automation geek.

When she is not watching Cobra Kai on Netflix, she shares interesting marketing advice on our podcast called Marketing Automation Made Simple. This is where she helps overwhelmed business owners build smart marketing growth systems so they feel excited and in control of growing their businesses.

You can always follow her on social media to see what she's up to.

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