The Essence of Ambassador Marketing

Quite a number of companies are shifting toward Ambassador marketing because it’s an effective way of telling the world about their goods and services. Though a lot of industries are still making use of the traditional marketing, the ambassador marketing has received wide recognition all over the world. It is also known as influencer marketing; it is believed to be the key to marketing in this internet age. Are you an e-commerce business owner and you are still glued to the traditional means of marketing?  Then, you are missing out on a lot of wonderful opportunities that comes with the influencer marketing. By the way, what do we mean by Ambassador marketing? The next section explains this concept. 

Who is a Brand Ambassador? 

A brand ambassador is an individual that represents an industry, company, or organization in public.  In other words, he/she is a representative of the company. The person is saddled with the responsibility of letting the world know about the products and services of such companies.  The individual is meant to be persuasive such that he/she talks in a way that his/her audience will be willing to go for the goods or services that is being advertised. 

According to recent studies that was conducted, it was discovered that the major factors that influence millennials’ buying decisions are the user generated as well as user-promoted contents.  When they purchase a particular product, they are also eager to share and tell the world about their experience with the product and services, therefore becoming a brand ambassador themselves. You don’t have to ponder too much to understand the reason why companies make it easier for people to buy their product and at the same time give them free avenue to share their opinions. 

It is evident now that there is a shift in the interest of companies in the 21st century as they have become drawn to ambassador platform, development of ambassador program as well as one-on-one customer engagement.  Are you a manager or a business owner doubting the effectiveness of this marketing strategy? Below are the reasons why influencer marketing is a sure way to take your business, company or organization to the next level. 

  • You should be aware of the fact that traditional means of advertising goods and services like TV, radio, ads, emails are no longer yielding the desired result because people are already used to them.  Meaning that, it is fast becoming irrelevant as people no longer listen to take them seriously.  

  • The use of ad blocker and other ad blocking technology has reduced the effectiveness of internet marketing. A lot of social media users are blind to ads on this platform as they are either carried away with things that are more important to them or see social media ads as a clever means of swindling them. 

  • You are aware of the fact that people tend to consult friends, relatives, neighbors and other people they know when it comes to buying a product or going for a particular service. They will like to know if the person had used the product in the past and hear their honest review. Meaning that, they are being influenced by their experiences as well as their opinion. Would you rather make judicious use of your money by taking advantage of the opportunity that comes with brand ambassadors? It is a wise way to invest in marketing. 

Types of Brand Ambassadors

When it comes to this form of marketing strategy, there are two broad types.  The two types of brand ambassadors are the true fans and influencer ambassador.  It is essential that you know the difference between the two as it will help you in knowing the type that works best for you. 

  • Influencer

The influencer promotes products and services online for money.  Influencer are believed to be an expert online in the field of operation of the brand. They have the unique ability to make people develop an interest in a product or services because they have a lot of social followers who have trust in them. 

  • True fans

Trues fans are people who are satisfied with the product and have already expressed their loyalty to the brand.  This category of brand ambassador can either be an employee or customer. Trues fans are different from influencers because they do not have followers, but they promote the image of brand both on one-on-one basis and collectively. These people are not rewarded monetarily for their services but they are likely to enjoy free products. 

Ambassador marketing deals majorly with the activities of real fans while influencer market has more to do with influencers. 

Other Classification of brand Ambassador

While we earlier classified brand ambassador broadly as influencer and true fans, there is another classification that you should not overlook. We have paid and unpaid ambassador. 

As the name implies, the paid ambassadors are brand ambassadors that are hired to promote the image of the product, a paid ambassador can either be an influencer or a blogger.  They have what it takes to influence the buying decision of their followers. Many companies have gained a lot of customers through this avenue. They consult paid ambassadors that will help shape the purchasing decision of their prospective customers. 

The unpaid ambassador is also as important as the bloggers and influencers, and they are even more credible than the paid ambassador. The best move any company can embark upon is investing in making this category of brand ambassador true advocate of their brand.  One way to succeed as an unpaid ambassador is by making people to know that you have great experience when it comes to a particular brand and also make family and friends see you as a frontrunner or expert.  

Where Can You Locate a Brand Ambassador?

Many companies have discovered that their customers function perfectly as their brand ambassador. That is, their buyers have the power to influence the buying decisions of those that are close to them since they are in a better position to convince their friends and family because they have used the product in the past and can testify to its effectiveness.  Some business also makes use of their workers, they discover that they are willing to serve as a brand ambassador for the company’s brand, so they engage in employee ambassador marketing. 

The benefits of employees and customers serving as a brand ambassador is that they are well acquainted with the company’s product. Not only that they know they product, it is also believed that they like it. So, they will be passionate about telling people about it. 

However, you should be aware of the fact that not all your customers will be ready to promote your brand. Some buyers are only interested in getting the product, they feel unconcerned about telling friends or influencing people who need similar product or services patronize your company. Those you need to target are your existing customers that have referred prospective customers in the past.  You should note overlook your regular buyers, especially those that buys from your frequently as well as those that have already shared post about your goods and services among their loved ones. customers that are likely to be your brand ambassadors are those that frequently like your post on social media and those on your email list. 

Those that double as your customer as well as your followers on social media are good prospect when it looking for a brand ambassador. You can also consider influencers with a number of audiences that are of the same category as your customer base.  They may not be buying from you yet, but will promote your brand among their followers. Note, however, that their service is not free. They will promote your product at a fee. 

The major criteria for a potential influencer according Crazy Eggs are as follows: 

  • They must be an expert at what they do 

  • They are relationship-driven 

  • They have a good grasp of marketing 

  • They have what it takes to gather insight 

  • They have leadership traits 

  • They are available online 

Steps in Ambassador Marketing strategies

To develop a viable ambassador marketing strategy, you need to consider the following steps: 

  • Give to receive people

One way through which you can build an army of ambassador is by allowing them know that their opinion counts.  You should not stop at that, let their opinion reflect in the purchase circle. When you continue to supply them with the information they are eager to hear during the buying process, they will be willing to buy and tell people about your brand. 

  • Allow people to see opinion from those that are more important to them

A good way of gaining people's confidence is by promoting your product through experts as well as people that are close to your prospective buyers like family and friends. You can achieve this by making your customers and employees talk to people close to them.  

  • Everybody wants to be heard

One way to boost the morale of your brand ambassador is by publicizing their opinions and achievements.  For instance, when there is a change in policies or you improve the quality of your products or services based on your customer’s input, you should let others know about their contribution towards the product improvement and change in policies. 

Some Brand Ambassador’s Strategies to Consider

There are quite a number of ways by which a company can decide to work with their ambassadors.  These strategies can be broadly classified as social media, online reviews, and the use of affiliate/ambassador marketing software. Let us take a look at each of these strategies: 

  • Online Reviews

Online reviews are customers comment and opinion about a particular product or services. Online reviews are easy to understand and it has become instrumental to the successful sale of many businesses.  It has been discovered that about 91% of first-time buyers trust these reviews the same way they trust their family and friends, so they are ready to base their buying decision on the reviews they read online about a brand. 

Also, a finding shows than 50% of potential customer will not go for a product if it has less than a 4-star rating.  The above facts show the efficacy of online reviews. The most appropriate individuals to do the reviews are the brand ambassadors. They are sure to leave positive reviews as they already develop interest in the product. You might need to pay your online reviewer or give them gifts. It must be noted that their review should express the true picture of the product. That is, they are expected to leave an honest, authentic online reviews. 

  • Social Media

Brand ambassadors, like influencer, make use of social media network to promote a brand.  Companies do not want to lose focus on the networks that are mostly used by their prospective clients.  Brand ambassadors go to social media to share links and contents that are related to your brand with their family as well as their friends.  This way, they tend to publicize your products and services. 

  • The use of Specialist Ambassador Software

There are different kinds of ambassador software designed to carry out the brand ambassador process automatically.  You can make judicious use of this software to provide appropriate contents for your brand ambassador to share with their contacts. Some of the features of this software are progress-tracking functionalities and the determination of ROI for ambassador’s campaign. The function of progress-tracker is to monitor the advancement of the ambassador. 

Conclusion

From the above points, it is evident that ambassador marketing is a vital tool that can help businesses and companies to increase their customer base and consequently, their sales volume.  At this point, we are well aware of the fact that the key to doing business in this 21st century is no longer advertisement, but the people. Therefore, an excellent way to connect with your prospective buyer is by embracing the ambassador marketing strategy.  This way, you improve your sales, build a viable and lasting relationship with your clients, and you increase your brand’s awareness in a more efficient way than any conventional means of advertising.

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