The word ‘brand ambassador’ gets thrown around all the time these days and has in fact become a common job title. Brands are frequently paying everyday people to go around to shops, offices and public places to interact with potential customers in order to generate positive brand image, brand awareness and word of mouth.
But let’s take a step back first. What exactly is a brand ambassador? Well that’s a good question. Google defines a brand ambassador as a person, especially a celebrity, who is paid to endorse or promote a particular company’s products or services.
This is technically correct, but a modern-day brand ambassador does so much more. Rather than simply thinking about big-shot celebrities that are paid millions to endorse huge brands, you should be using every-day people, especially, your current employees, as brand ambassadors. Brand ambassadors promote your brand to people within their network or reference group, which in effect boosts brand awareness and revenue. If you hand-pick a bunch of inspiring, motivating, convincing individuals who actually love, use and know about your brand, these individuals, on any scale can help your marketing strategy succeed.
When considering who you are going to choose as brand ambassadors, think about your employees, and your customers. It’s very easy to put up a job ad looking for people to endorse your brand, but unless they know, love and use your brand, they are not going to be effective. The whole point of using brand ambassadors is to make an impact, and without having people that are meaningfully connected to your brand and products and can sell your brand based on their personal connection and usage, there is no point. People think if they hire people to become brand ambassadors their brand awareness and sales will instantly go up. This is not the case. I cannot stress this enough.
This is why you should focus on enabling your current employees to become ambassadors for your brand. In the technological age, we have an abundance of information at our finger tips, but we are always seeking other opinions, especially those that are truly informed. With this in mind, using your employees as brand ambassadors increase your social reach. While you can still reach audiences through traditional and digital marketing platforms and advertising, the voices of your customers and employees will resonate more with their social networks. People value the opinions of their in-group, so why not use this trend to your advantage? If your company has a few hundred to a few thousand employees, all of whom are advocating your company through sharing content, posting jobs, etc, alongside your marketers and paid advertising material, your employees, as brand ambassadors act as an organic marketing extension.
We are living in a transformational age where consumers want reliable and trustworthy information. Developing brand ambassadors and implementing them into your marketing strategy is key, and if you are not doing this yet, you are seriously behind. Social media is an increasingly powerful tool, and the people who work for and value your company will be the ones driving important conversations online. Complementing your marketing strategy with brand ambassadors will help you implement a strong and successful marketing plan and turn your marketing goals into a reality.