Brand ambassador programmes are extremely helpful in reaching more customers with a small budget. They are commonly used by startups with some reputation that already have customers highly engaged with the brand.
This specific growth hacking technique builds on a direct relationship between the brand and a set of loyal customers. You need time to deal with the ambassadors, measure their performance and reward them so as to reach more possible clients.
In formulating a strategy for this kind of initiative there are a couple of considerations to bear in mind:
1. What do you want to accomplish?
Most of the time, this kind of programme is aimed at raising awareness and sales but their goal can be something much more specific, such as getting reviews or connecting with possible partners. It all depends on the state of the business and the current needs that are identified.
It is extremely important to set a few goals to make it easier to define tasks for ambassadors as well as metrics to verify what progress is being made.
2. What can you offer?
You will need to understand the motivations of your potential ambassadors to make the best choices on what to offer. Some people apply to add experience to their resumés, others because they truly love the brand, or just to get some cool free stuff. A good way to find out what motivates them is to send out a survey as part of the selection process so as to better understand the different candidates and choose those that best fit the company’s needs.
Make a short list of things that you can offer and send it to the selected candidates. If possible let them choose what they want. Some candidates may only want access to premium features, for example, so you do not need to work too hard to satisfy their needs.
3. Choose the right people
Choosing the right people is key to success, so you should value quality over quantity; a few passionate ambassadors are an amazing asset.
Make sure you choose candidates who interact with your target audience and are in the specific segments of the market that you are after.
In general, the selection process changes immensely according to the goals being targeted. If your aim is simply to generate awareness, choose ambassadors with a lot of followers, or micro influencers, to quickly reach a wide range of people. By contrast, if your goal is to reach actual potential customers, choose ambassadors who really love the brand and will positively spread the word about you.
There is no golden rule for successfully running this sort of project; it is up to different companies to decide whether to go for it or not. But there is nothing to lose from attempting it and always the chance that it puts you in touch with people who can give you amazing feedback or even join the company in the future.
If you have not yet started a brand ambassador programme, what are you waiting for?