Lisa Bonner | ,| By
Your company brand is like a person, with its own distinct personality.
Top companies are investing in building reputational capital and market share with brand ambassador programs, harnessing the power of their greatest assets, their employees.
Brand ambassadors embody your corporate identity (mirroring your values, ethics, appearance) and promote your company’s products or services. They are genuinely interested in your company brand and are willing to spread the word for you. Brand ambassadors are a key component in your marketing strategy by strengthening the customer-product/service relationship and influencing a large audience to buy and consume more. Brand ambassadors reach out to the community and drive the conversations on social networks (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram), shaping your reputation both online and off.
Here’s a few tips-
1. Outline responsibilities- clearly outline responsibilities and expectations on how they’ll balance this new role with their other commitments. Make sure they realize that they’re a crucial part of a company’s marketing strategy, and an integral piece to the overall puzzle. They should be well trained and able to answer almost any question that a prospective consumer might have for them.
2. Connect with your ambassadors and provides ways for them to connect to each other- set up an introductory meeting to kickoff the program and subsequent events (in-person or virtually) so that they can feed off of each other’s ideas.
3. Provide a feedback loop- set up a site on your enterprise social network for brand ambassadors to share feedback. The input of your brand ambassador can be invaluable to your business in understanding what your target market wants. Encourage open and transparent dialog, learn from mistake and let ideas flourish!
4. Encourage innovation- brand ambassadors should embrace innovation and be willing to cut through red tape to get the message heard. Give your brand ambassadors the tools to create something amazing!
5. Set up metrics- think out how you’ll measure and track the activities, reach and impact of your brand ambassadors and link it to your business strategy.
Another approach would be to select external brand ambassadors who have a love for your products and services. Some companies for seek out admired bloggers or celebrities that already have a community of loyal followers, and are linked to your target audience. When they post, tweet, pin, or share… people listen. External brand ambassadors are a little riskier (need to vet their loyalty!), but they may be able to cultivate relationships with people that may have never thought about trying your product.
Brand ambassadors are key influencers that act as a walking-and-talking personification of your brand. Brand ambassador programs bridge the gap between your business and customers and can help take your company to a new level.
Do you have a brand ambassadors program? How are your employees “living your brand?”