When hyping up your brand, product, or service image having your very own squad of cheerleaders—aka brand ambassadors. These people actively promote your brand to their friends, family, and colleagues. No matter how slick your personalized messages are or how much data you throw at targeting, nothing beats a trusted ambassador’s sway and credibility when it comes to getting the message across.
By understanding the driving forces behind these ambassadors and recognizing their importance, you can discover how to effectively build and nurture your brand identity. Imagine a powerful, long-lasting strategy for brand advocacy that can transform your business and make it the talk of the town!
What is a Brand Ambassador?
A brand ambassador speaks positively about your brand and the benefits you provide. These individuals usually know your business well – what you sell, what sets you apart, and why you do what you do. They’re willing to vouch for your brand by putting their name behind it and recommending it to others.
The great thing about brand ambassadors is their diverse nature. There isn’t a one-size-fits-all definition for who can serve as a brand advocate. They can take various forms, such as:
- Loyal customers who have made prior purchases and are really interested in your products or services.
- Employees who possess a deeper understanding of the business, including the ins and outs, yet remain relatable as real individuals behind the scenes.
- Online influencers you engage with, who express interest in trying and subsequently endorsing your brand.
Chances are, you’ve unknowingly stepped into the role of a brand ambassador at some point.
Have you ever:
- Recommended a product you liked to a friend or family member?
- Given a shout-out to a business you appreciate?
- Tagged a product on social media?
- Shared content from a brand you really enjoy?
If so, you’ve been embracing the essence of a brand ambassador without even realizing it!
Unleashing the Power of Brand Ambassadors for Your Business
So, what’s the deal? What can brand ambassadors actually do to boost your brand?
Brand ambassadors add a special and personal touch to your marketing.
Marketing is changing and people are now savvy and discerning, no longer swayed by outdated, deceptive tactics aimed solely at driving sales. As millennials and Gen Z become a bigger part of the consumer base, there’s a growing demand for connection, representation, and inclusivity.
This is where brand ambassadors come into play with a significant opportunity to excel: they are relatable, unique, and, most importantly, they can authentically represent your audience.
Rather than “you” repeatedly talking about why people should work with you or buy from you, brand ambassadors can share the same message in more fun and relatable ways that connect with the audience. It’s about moving beyond conventional marketing methods – think less like a traditional “landing page” and more like an “Instagram Reel.”
At the end of the day, having a real person endorse your brand makes it more relatable and builds stronger trust. Don’t believe us?
Media company Toluna discovered that people favored advertisements showcasing everyday individuals. More than half (57.6 percent) expressed a stronger connection to ads featuring real people, while 62.3 percent agreed that a brand featuring ordinary individuals was more likely to understand its customers’ desires.¹
So, when choosing people for your brand, it’s important to think about how their stories can connect with people of all ages, genders, races, and backgrounds. Consider the shared experiences we all have as humans. Are the people chosen to tell these stories from different societal groups, making it possible for as many customers as possible to see themselves in your branding?
Brand ambassadors help you reach more people and tap into new markets.
Brand ambassadors make your brand more genuine and relatable and help you reach a larger audience. For instance, if you have a brand ambassador promoting your brand to their followers, it’s likely that some of those followers were unaware of your brand before – but now they do.
An ideal scenario involves having a brand ambassador with a genuine connection to your brand, such as using similar products or sharing common interests. This ensures that their followers are more inclined to be interested in what you have to offer.
Here’s where inclusivity comes into play. According to Deloitte, 57 percent of consumers stick around with brands that champion diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI).² But it’s not just about repeat business—your current customers turn into fans. They dig the inclusive vibe your brand radiates, and guess what? They’re likely to share the love and influence new customers.
For instance, people pointed out Dove’s role as a trailblazer in DEI. They featured diverse individuals in terms of genders, body sizes, skin tones, colors, and physical abilities–a commitment they upheld even before it became a widespread trend.
Connecting Brand Ambassadors with Your Message
In 2021, the heavy hitters in marketing—think influencer marketing, blogging, and social media shopping tools—scored the best returns on investment. The stats speak volumes: studies have shown that 92 percent of consumers place more in trust influencer marketing than traditional advertising, and influencer marketing yields 11 times better ROI than traditional marketing methods.³
Translation? Brand ambassadors are unsung heroes. They know how to get your brand message across with finesse. These numbers tell a no-nonsense story about the impact they bring to the table in forming effective, collaborative, and mutually beneficial relationships.
As you connect with potential brand ambassadors, remember these three important tips.
Make sure your brand message is clear.
This is important: before you ask others to promote your brand, make sure you fully understand your brand message and mission. Your brand message includes various elements, but its main purpose is to help your audience grasp what you do, how you do it, and who you help.
Picture your firm’s mission—let’s say, to connect top-notch candidates with the right opportunities. This brand message resonates through concise social media posts, insightful newsletters, engaging blog content, and impactful videos.
Therefore, when seeking ambassadors for your brand, the focus is on individuals who align seamlessly with this mission.
Otherwise, you might end up spending your time reaching out to individuals who have no connection to your brand and can’t provide the same advantages as someone who aligns better with your beliefs, values, language, and objectives.
Build a network of advocates to share your brand.
Another method is by forming a network of referrals and individuals capable of promoting your brand, even if they aren’t direct customers. Your brand message allows people to explore and understand what your brand represents, its beliefs, and the unique qualities that set it apart.
From the start, your brand message has the potential to draw in people who are:
- People who love your brand
- Those with similar interests and goals
- Businesses you can collaborate with
- Individuals inspired by your work
- People interested in your field, even if they don’t work in it directly
- Various consumers with diverse needs and preferences
Create a brand ambassador program with clear goals and expectations.
When finding and working successfully with brand ambassadors, you have to be very clear about your goals and expectations.
These days, many popular brand ambassador programs are all about raising awareness. This means you’ll be focusing on things like gaining more followers and increasing engagement, rather than looking at more concrete results like sales and profits.
To keep things consistent in sharing your brand message and using your brand voice, consider providing your ambassadors with a style guide or a set of swipe files. Since your ambassadors will serve as another representation of your brand and its values, maintaining consistency is important.
Even as they inject their unique personal flair into the content they share and the way they promote your brand, it’s important to keep things cohesive.
Learning from the Best: Real-World Brand Ambassador Programs
Explore the following brand ambassador initiatives that showcase impactful strategies and successes.
Red Bull takes pride as one of the longest and most successful brand ambassador programs. With over 4,000 college-age ambassadors known as Student Marketeers, their goal is to spread awareness and enthusiasm about the product and brand. Their mission involves energizing fellow students, athletes, and anyone seeking an energy boost.
The success behind: This brand ambassador program goes beyond targeting college students. Marketeers promote Red Bull on their campus or in their region using guerrilla marketing and online sharing. They collaborate with sponsored athletes, engage with the public at Red Bull events, and find strategic ways to distribute the product.
Additionally, they receive invitations to collaborate with various opinion leaders to bring creative ideas to life.
Lululemon, the global athletic and lifestyle brand, boasts a diverse group of brand ambassadors, including elite athletes, fitness experts (Global Ambassadors), and local yoga instructors connected to neighborhood stores (Store Ambassadors).
These ambassadors actively showcase Lululemon gear through in-store, online, and community classes, often sharing workout photos featuring the brand on social media.
The key takeaway: Lululemon’s effective marketing strategy turns ambassadors into genuine partners, providing increased visibility and mentorship opportunities in return for their efforts. This model also grants ambassadors exclusive access to test new products, making them the first to share insights with Lululemon.
CHOOSE ALLIED INSIGHT AS YOUR TRUSTED BRAND PARTNER
Partnering with Allied Insight is like having a dedicated team of brand ambassadors at your service. Entrust your brand’s story to us, and watch as we seamlessly amplify your message, establish genuine connections, and elevate your brand to greater heights.
With strategic deployment and our expertise, we don’t just tell your brand’s story; we embody it. Your brand’s message will soar to new heights, leaving an indelible mark on your audience. Contact us today and let’s start this brand-new journey!
1. “Consumers like “Real People” Ads but Prefer a Laugh, Research Finds.” www.campaignlive.co.uk, www.campaignlive.co.uk/article/consumers-real-people-ads-prefer-laugh-research-finds/1445068
2. Brodzik, Christina, et al. “Authentically Inclusive Marketing: Winning Future Customers with Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.” Deloitte, 19 October 2021, https://www2.deloitte.com/us/en/insights/topics/marketing-and-sales-operations/global-marketing-trends/2022/diversity-and-inclusion-in-marketing.html
3. AdSkate. “The Power of Influencer Marketing: The Rise, Impact, and 5Ws of This Marketing Strategy.” LinkedIn, 6 May 2023, https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/power-influencer-marketing-rise-impact-5ws-strategy-adskate-inc/.