A Complete Guide to Ambassador Marketing for Businesses
Businesses today have a lot of options at their disposal to promote products or services. Other than using traditional forms of marketing, brands have to evolve their strategies to encompass newer channels, like social media, to reach unprecedented levels of brand exposure by relying on organic promotion or paid ad campaigns.
Still, there’s one form of marketing that stands above the rest that works for both social media audiences and offline promotion—ambassador marketing. The following guide will explain what ambassador marketing is and show you how you can set up an ambassador marketing program of your own.
What Is Ambassador Marketing?
This marketing approach primarily involves the use of brand ambassadors who promote your business to consumers on the ground and on social media. Brand ambassadors have the following responsibilities:
|General Responsibilities||Specific Tasks|
Companies pick their brand ambassadors from different groups, including:
- Loyal customers
- Nano- and micro-influencers in their niche
- Successful social media content creators
Ambassador marketing campaigns can be based on a specific goal, such as boosting brand awareness, increasing sales, driving conversions, growing your social media following, and others, but the main focus is on community building. The brand ambassadors you choose should be passionate about your brand and work to spread their enthusiasm among other customers.
Using brand ambassadors for brand promotion usually requires working with multiple ambassadors at a time to increase the effectiveness of your marketing strategy. Since managing numerous ambassadors can get out of hand easily, companies set up brand ambassador programs with clearly defined guidelines and compensation structures.
Why Brands Should Adopt Brand Ambassador Marketing To Grow
Brand ambassadors act as the face and voice of your brand—they talk to the public about your company and products, respond to inquiries, and lead online conversations about your brand. These activities boost brand awareness and drive sales.
Brands should opt for ambassador marketing for the following reasons:
- Word-of-mouth marketing is the most trusted form of marketing—92% of consumers trust product recommendations from family and friends above all other forms of marketing. This gives you the chance to attract numerous potential customers through word-of-mouth promotion.
- You get honest feedback—Brand ambassadors get to test new products and provide honest, well-informed feedback. They also receive valuable feedback and opinions from their audiences, which they share with you to improve your products and services.
- It’s more affordable than other popular marketing strategies—Utilizing ambassadors for your marketing needs is way more affordable than using influencers or paid social media ads and can bring better marketing results.
- It ensures a higher customer lifetime value—Customers who enter an ambassador program demonstrate an increase in order value and purchase frequency. By establishing an ambassadorship program with hundreds or thousands of ambassadors, you increase your sales through program participants and also gain new customers within their follower base.
- Brand ambassadors humanize your brand—Ambassadors have a real connection with the brands they represent, and because of this they promote the company better and build stronger bonds with the audiences they interact with. Consumers are more likely to buy products based on a brand ambassador’s recommendation compared to buying based on what they see in an ad—they respect the opinions of brand ambassadors more.
- It significantly improves your social media presence—Brand ambassadors ensure your company is represented well online by creating and posting promotional content on their accounts. This way, you get access to audiences that you wouldn’t be able to tap into easily with just your official business account.
How Can Brands Set Up a Successful Brand Ambassador Marketing Plan?
Before you set up your ambassador marketing plan, you should know what you want to achieve with it. Do you want to make audiences aware of your new products, boost overall sales, or improve customer loyalty? Whatever the case, have a clear end goal in mind.
As a business, you should also set KPIs to measure and track the success of your program. For example, brand ambassadors can aim to increase the number of referral sales by 5% each month—this monthly target will serve as the program performance indicator for the brand.
Once the objectives and KPIs are set, you can begin shaping your program.
Define What Type of Brand Ambassadors You Want
While some brands immediately go for partnerships with celebrities and popular social media creators, founding your brand ambassador program on this type of collaboration may be shaky. Big influencers might not even know about your brand or have any meaningful relationship with your products, so they will lack the authenticity required for effective word-of-mouth marketing.
Smaller-scale influencers and content creators make much more suitable ambassadors—they have industry-specific audiences that businesses can leverage to increase brand recognition and reach.
Take a look at how working with big influencers compares to working with smaller-scale ambassadors:
|Working with influencers is based on one-off and short-term contracts||Relationships between brands and ambassadors are much longer. Most brands build programs that last at least a year.|
|Influencers promote your product because they’ve been paid to do it||Ambassadors promote your brand/product because they love it and for a few extra perks|
|They talk about your brand in a few posts on social media||They continuously promote your brand on social media and offline|
Develop Brand Ambassador Program Guidelines
Before finding ambassadors for your program, you should first come up with a general structure of the program—this involves establishing clear guidelines, requirements, and duties for the applicants.
In this phase, you should come up with a brand ambassador social media policy that defines the tone and messaging for ambassador-generated content. You can also decide if you want to set the minimum number of followers applicants should have and come up with activities they will be doing online and offline.
Besides the passion for your brand, your ideal brand ambassador should have these characteristics:
- Great communication skills—Brand ambassadors will be talking and writing about your brand constantly. They should be able to communicate well verbally and in written form to spread the word more effectively.
- Working knowledge of social media content production—Ambassadors should know how to create eye-catching and engaging content for various social networks, most commonly Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok, since they’re the most business-friendly platforms.
- Willingness to learn—A good brand ambassador has to know the product they’re promoting in detail. They should be able to keep up with the latest trends, challenges, new product lines, or updated product features to effectively promote the company.
Recruit Ambassadors for Your Ambassador Marketing Program
To build a successful brand ambassador program, you need to find ambassadors who have a genuine love for your brand and products and whose personal values align with your brand values and ambassador program goals.
Here are some of the best ways you can find suitable candidates for brand ambassadorship:
- Capture their attention in purchase confirmation emails—This method is great for recruiting existing customers. You can explain the details of your ambassador program, point out the perks they will get by joining, and invite interested candidates to apply with a strong call to action. Recruiting existing customers builds customer loyalty and lowers compensation costs since most customers will participate in your program in exchange for free products, discounts, and exclusive deals.
- Ask customers and fans to join during brand events—Offline interactions are great for recruitment since they enable you to build stronger bonds and screen your ambassadors better. Apart from events, you can ask customers to join your program when they visit your store or office.
- Make use of your fan base—Businesses can invite their social media followers and customers to spread the word to other fans of their products by sharing information about ambassador programs on their personal accounts or via newsletters.
- Post on social media—Popular platforms like Instagram present a huge pool of candidates, including customers, micro-influencers, and successful content creators that you can recruit for your program. You can reach out to them by sending direct messages, posting public announcements, or setting up a paid ad with a link to the application form to promote the program further
Reward and Empower Your Brand Ambassadors
As a brand, you should always aim to foster good relationships with your ambassadors as they represent your company in the public eye.
Most ambassadors will be happy to work with their favorite brands without any form of conventional payment. Still, you should find ways to motivate them and make them feel valued.
Here are several popular ways to empower and reward brand ambassadors:
- Provide free samples—If you’re launching or promoting new products, always send your ambassadors samples so that they use/test them and learn important product details before creating relevant social media content and sharing the product with the world.
- Shout them out on your business socials—A simple social media shout-out doesn’t only build stronger bonds with ambassadors; it also puts a face in front of your brand and humanizes your business account, improving the trust and credibility of your business.
- Provide discounts, gift cards, and free products—Most ambassador marketing programs rely on these rewards rather than money. Since ambassadors already love your products, they’ll be happy to get them for free or at an exclusive discount.
- Invite them to brand events—You should invite ambassadors to company events. Not only to market your brand but also to make them feel like they are a real part of your organization. If it’s a paid event, ambassadors should be able to attend for free.
- Send personal thank-you notes—They’re great for building meaningful relationships with your brand ambassadors. They’ll feel appreciated, and that will motivate them to continue promoting your business.
Monitor the Progress of Your Ambassador Marketing Strategy
With more ambassadors to manage, you will realize that there is a lot of information to keep track of, such as:
- Completed ambassador tasks
- Frequency of social media posting
- Number of reposts and shares
- Impressions and engagement
- Issued rewards
Tracking all the activities within your brand ambassador program is crucial for optimizing and scaling. As the number of your ambassadors grows, you will have to invest more time and resources into managing your brand ambassador program more efficiently.
3 Key Tips To Enhance Your Ambassador Marketing Strategy
Fostering a good relationship between you and your ambassadors is essential, especially since these partnerships are long-term. Still, handling a growing brand ambassador program is not without its challenges.
Here are the best practices you can use to optimize your ambassador marketing program:
- Provide training—Ambassadors recruited from your customer base may not have prior experience with promoting a brand. In this case, you can enroll them in brief online workshops so they can get the expertise to promote your brand better.
- Ask for feedback—Ambassadors know the brand’s communities best, and because of this, their opinions are valuable for the improvement of the ambassador program. They know the type of content that works best for their audiences and the niche-relevant trends that are popular at the moment. As a part of your community, they will appreciate the transparency as well.
- Use brand ambassador management software—Managing several brand ambassadors comes with a lot of administrative activities, such as delegating tasks and issuing compensation. Manual management can be grueling, and there’s no need to make your job more difficult than it already is when you can utilize automated brand ambassador management tools.
BrandChamp Can Help You Develop a Winning Ambassador Marketing Program
The benefits of ambassador marketing for brands are evident—better reach, steady growth of your social media business accounts, increased sales, improved online presence, and more people who get excited about your products. Still, creating a winning brand ambassador program takes a lot of work.
Apart from finding and recruiting brand ambassadors, you have to create and assign daily tasks, review and approve submitted content, set up compensation systems, issue out rewards, track analytics, and more. All these activities can make it difficult for marketing admins to successfully run and manage a brand ambassador program, especially if they’re doing it manually. To streamline the management of ambassador programs, businesses can use automated tools like BrandChamp.
Our platform is the leading software solution specifically designed to ease the process of managing brand ambassadors and help scale brand ambassador programs.
How BrandChamp Works
BrandChamp simplifies ambassador management tasks for brands and ambassadors by giving you the chance to automate time-consuming activities and processes. Our mission is to bridge the gap between brands and their ambassadors by bringing them together on one platform for growing ambassador programs of all sizes and building close-knit communities.
Community managers can use the platform for the following activities:
- Collecting and storing all brand-relevant content
- Onboarding new brand ambassadors and managing all participants—you can categorize, filter, and browse through hundreds of ambassadors easily
- Creating new activities and tasks for brand ambassadors
- Managing brand ambassadors’ company-relevant social media activities
- Automating ambassador referral sales tracking and management
- Building a personalized rewards catalog for different program tiers
- Integrating the program with popular e-commerce platforms, like Shopify and Amazon, and social media platforms, including Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, and Twitter
- Accessing and reviewing real-time analytics to analyze the success of campaigns and individual ambassadors
Brand ambassadors can use BrandChamp to create and submit content to be reviewed before posting, see their assigned tasks, collect points for completed activities, claim rewards, and interact with other ambassadors to boost team spirit.
Brands That Use BrandChamp To Manage Their Ambassador Programs
The use of brand ambassadors isn’t limited to the biggest brands—small and mid-sized companies can also adopt this form of marketing since it’s affordable and effective. Ambassador marketing can work for brands across most industries, including health and wellness, education, tech, and retail.
Thanks to BrandChamp, numerous companies were able to develop and refine their ambassador marketing strategies and better promote their products and services.
This workout supplements brand has a team of enthusiastic ambassadors aged between 16 and 45 years from all over the world, including Australia, New Zealand, and Canada. EHP Labs ambassadors all come from the world of fitness and include gym instructors, nutritionists, and similar professionals.
When this company first introduced ambassador marketing, the program generated around $6,000 in sales each month. By automating the program via BrandChamp, EHP Labs makes $30,000 per month from their ambassador program alone. The brand’s program managers are also able to recruit new ambassadors faster, reach peak social media engagement, and track ambassador performance with more transparency.
This brand needed a tool that would help manage a team of over 200 brand ambassadors and automate ambassador activities for better accountability and easier return-on-investment tracking.
Ragnar Relay community managers found everything they wanted in BrandChamp. Our platform helped this brand optimize its ambassador strategy via:
- Faster recruitment of high-quality social media ambassadors
- Development of a four-part ambassador training program
- Better tracking of brand ambassador performance thanks to BrandChamp’s analytics tool
Based in British Columbia, this eco-friendly health brand sells vitamins, supplements, and other fitness and beauty products.
Herbaland successfully recruited ambassadors from their Instagram business account, but the program grew fast and demanded a good management platform. Herbaland’s community managers found the solution in BrandChamp.
Our platform now enables them to:
- Email targeted groups of ambassadors
- Offer rewards to select ambassadors
- Create tiered commission structures
Since starting with BrandChamp, the company has seen a significant increase in brand awareness, referral sales, and the number of customers. Their admins were also able to launch and expand Herbaland’s Facebook group, growing Herbaland’s customer community further and building stronger relationships with ambassadors.
You can also see excellent results from your brand ambassador program. Contact our team, and we will show you how BrandChamp can help your business go to the next level.