Branding is one of the essential aspects of business success.
A good brand can create the immediately recognizable look and personality that a company needs to stand out. And few things will help expand this facet and make it more effective than a brand ambassador program.
This unique program type can produce a synchronized approach to branding that syncs all company brand opportunities.
Just as importantly, these programs create unique online marketing possibilities that help expand a company’s range beyond its initial borders.
Here’s what you need to know about this process and five tips that make it more effective for your needs:
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What Is a Brand Ambassador
Brand ambassadors are what their name suggests — a professional who works to promote a specific company and its vision.
The “ambassador” title is not just a cheeky reference, either, as a good brand ambassador is skilled at interacting with people who may not be engaged with a product otherwise.
At their core, a good brand ambassador does all the groundwork and footwork needed to spread a company’s name.
They will write reviews online, help with marketing concepts, and even provide training. They often have a very active social media presence where they discuss products and services.
In a sense, they synthesize a company’s approach and mission objective and distill it down to its barest essence.
They strive to create a coherent message that is simple enough to be easy to remember but deep enough not to feel like a basic catchphrase.
In this way, brand ambassadors also help evolve a business approach and keep it current with modern trends.
And a good ambassador will also engage with a business’ customers, reach out to them about various changes in a company, and get their feel for products and services.
In this way, they also serve a customer service window, albeit one that helps measure success in these fields.
Many reading this article may think that this title sounds a lot like an influencer — and they wouldn’t be too far off with that assumption.
However, these jobs are quite different in a handful of ways. To help readers better understand this fact, we explore the differences below in some depth.
This way, you won’t get confused if you’re interested in hiring one or more of these professionals.
Differences Between Brand Ambassadors and Influencers
Let’s start by defining a social media influencer to get an idea of what these professionals do for a business.
Their job duties typically include posts on social media or other online sources to promote a brand, including their products and services.
These influencers use products on their channels and promote them, discussing their benefits and how they function for a specific want or need.
However, their videos or content aren’t centered totally on these brands but may be used in passing as they create their standard content.
An influencer will usually include a handful of products or services in their posts and engage with their followers as directly as possible.
The idea is for these people to connect with their audience and influence them to purchase a product or a service from a business.
Now, a brand ambassador has many of the same types of duties and provides many of the same services discussed here.
Their responsibility is to connect with their followers on social media and other sites and market a product directly to their needs.
However, a brand ambassador differs because they work more closely with a company and typically focus solely on their products over all others.
In essence, they are closer to a direct employee of that company, whereas an influencer is usually a freelancer who may never work with a business again.
As a result, a brand ambassador has more influence over the direction of a company and its marketing.
They can focus on many long-term marketing concepts and continually find new ways to enhance or show off a product. This approach helps to create a more sustainable campaign.
However, brand ambassadors often do have the flexibility to change brands if their contract ends, or they find another company to market.
This factor all depends on the quality of a brand ambassador program and the benefits they provide for those who work for them.
The Best Examples of Brand Ambassador Programs
Though ambassadors may not be direct employees, they have more loyalty to a business beyond an influencer.
A few of the most acclaimed ambassador programs on the market include:
Yelp: This company’s ambassador program has often been applauded as one of the most effective and efficient on the market, providing various helpful tips and reviews that engage well with their audience.
Red Bull: This drink company has always had a unique look at the marketing world. Their brand ambassador team has focused heavily on creating events and more that produce an exciting atmosphere.
Maker’s Mark: Few ambassador programs are as acclaimed as that of this whiskey maker. They provide various benefits for their ambassadors, like gifts and event invitations, that make their ambassadors very loyal.
And that should be the biggest goal of any brand ambassador program — producing a sense of loyalty.
Without it, a brand ambassador is likely to skip to another company or may not promote a business as well as they should on their channel.
Thankfully, creating a good brand ambassador program is not an impossible task.
5 Tips To Create a Brand Ambassador Program
The following 5 tips have been carefully researched and selected to provide the most accurate range of business possibilities.
Though there are other tips and strategies available, these should serve as good starting tools for creating a new brand ambassador program.
1. Select Your Brand Ambassadors
Not just anybody should be a brand ambassador.
Instead, it is essential to pick people who have a good audience and know how to engage with them. And it is also crucial to find someone who already uses a company’s products.
This way, it is easy to create loyalty and get honest opinions from an ambassador. None should be forced to be loyal to a company or feel an obligation. Instead, they should honestly have a desire to promote a business.
2. Develop Different Programs for Different Markets
If you have multiple products and serve various markets, you cannot expect that one program will handle your brand ambassador needs.
Instead, you may need to produce a handful of programs aimed at each of these markets to get the full scope you want.
For instance, if you market one good to a youth demographic and another to the senior age range, you need young ambassadors for the first group and older ones for the second.
Aim these ambassadors at the wants and needs of your customers, finding approaches that make sense for them.
3. Communicate Mutually Agreed Upon Expectations
There’s nothing worse for a brand ambassador than expecting one thing and being told another.
Inconsistency of this type will spread downward to the ambassadors and affect their work quality, causing more problems than it is worth.
Therefore, it is crucial to set down, in writing, what a brand ambassador must do for a business.
Their rewards — including tiers of accomplishment — must be correctly spelled out and legally binding to satisfy their needs.
4. Offer Creative Incentives
All brand ambassadors want and expect specific incentives for promoting a company. Some just want a direct cash reimbursement, while others may wish to get a gift or gift card.
But if you produce more creative and memorable incentives, you may attract more potential ambassadors.
For example, you may offer more than discounts on your services but one-of-a-kind collector items for your ambassadors.
These items can include t-shirts that cannot be purchased elsewhere or more specialized versions of your products that appeal to your ambassadors.
5. Think Globally, Act Locally
Lastly, it would help if you always aimed to hit a global market by working on a local scale.
Confused? Think of this concept in these terms — if your influencers show the positive impact of a business on a community, this message can be spread around the globe more effectively.
As a result, it is good to continually show ambassadors doing good for a community and striving to make a positive difference.
Ensure that they share footage of themselves using a product to enhance their world, creating a positive global image for your company.
As you can see, brand ambassadors can help to boost your brand’s engagement. Create a solid strategy, and you will see the results!
A point that you should consider, while planning your strategy, is how your brand will communicate with the public. This will also impact how ambassadors will present themselves.
Read our guide on content consistency, and see how this is a key factor in any content strategy success!