How to Create a Brand Ambassador Program: The Ultimate Guide

How to Create a Brand Ambassador Program: The Ultimate Guide

How to create a brand ambassador program?

To create a brand ambassador program, you should identify your goals, start simple, identify a suitable brand ambassador program type and advocates, and recruit the best potential brand ambassadors. Using such a program allows brands to access an ambassador's audiences even without a massive social media presence.

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Word-of-mouth marketing remains to withstand the changes in the current marketing landscape. However, it’s now being utilized by brands along with their social network and viral marketing efforts. And this strategy gave birth to what we now know as a brand ambassador program.

Businesses that belong to a cutthroat and competitive industry have already invested in making brand ambassador programs in 2021. Many companies are looking past traditional ad campaigns and have adopted brand ambassadorship, given the fact that people nowadays consume online content more than ever. Through such a program, brands can easily build relationships with people by connecting to brand ambassadors who will advertise for them.

Unfortunately, there are still some companies who hesitate to get on board in this marketing strategy. What if there’s a minimal return on investment? What if we chose the wrong personality for our brand? Leave your worries at the door and start by learning more about what a brand ambassador program is all about. And who knows? You may already start establishing your first among successful clothing brand ambassador programs. It can even be for food products, makeup line, and so on.

What is a Brand Ambassador Program?

Getting an ambassador right away to promote your brand is the best way to set yourself up for failure. With a brand ambassador program in place, you can lay out the standards as to how your company will work with ambassadors.

When you think of working with ambassadors, you’ll most likely have specific goals in mind. Such goals may include increasing your sales, getting a wider reach, or establishing brand awareness. Fortunately, a brand ambassador program can help you reach your goals faster and with less hassle. 

How to Become a Brand Ambassador

an influencer endorsing bitcoin
To become an effective brand ambassador, you must be an asset to the company —not a liability.

Your brand ambassadors, also called brand advocates, could be your customers, employees, business partners, or the most common advocates, social media influencers. Now, for the million-dollar questionhow do you become a brand ambassador?

Ideally, a brand ambassador must have a large follower count on his or her social media profile. They must already have an established audience that you can tap on and this audience should also represent what your ideal customer is. Furthermore, brand ambassadors must have the right information about the brand they’ll soon promote. If the brand will have a new product or service offering soon, ambassadors must be kept updated so that their audience will also be updated.

In essence, brand ambassadors should be real people who support and know the worth of your products and services. They must have credibility, most importantly. You may wonder: do brand ambassadors get paid? Yes, most influencers work with paid contracts while some accept barters and ex-deals. However, brand ambassadors aren’t only there for the incentives but they actually use your products and services and they’re more than willing to share their experience with their audience.

How Brand Ambassador Programs Work

When you have brand ambassadors to advertise for your products or services, it’s ideal to work with them closely for a long period. Just like your business logo, your brand ambassadors will serve as the face of your brand. Through this face, it’ll be easier for your brand to be recognized by your target customers. 

If you already have a brand ambassador program in place, it’ll then be easier for you to formalize your relationship with your chosen individual ambassadors. You can also formally discuss and agree on the details, requirements, guidelines, and incentives that come with this business relationship.

Types of Brand Ambassador Programs

a man using laptops
Research and test your strategies to find the ambassador program that best suits your brand.

The four possible ways you can set up your brand ambassador programs are: 

  • Requirement-driven brand ambassador programs
  • Affiliate brand ambassador programs
  • Informal brand ambassador programs
  • College brand ambassador programs

Requirement-driven Brand Ambassador Programs

This program involves imposing specific requirements on ambassadors. For instance, for brands looking for Instagram ambassadors, the program may require the ambassador to upload at least 10 paid posts on their Instagram profile within a 30-day span. 

Affiliate Brand Ambassador Programs

Another program type is the affiliate brand ambassador program. In this setting, the ambassador can include unique affiliate links to their paid posts uploaded on their own platforms. Once their followers click any of these affiliate links, they’ll receive a commission whenever they complete a sale.

Informal Brand Ambassador Programs

Informal brand ambassador programs are invites for ambassadors to openly show their support to your brand. This program involves no structure; hence it may have no signed agreements, requirements, or rewards. You may wonder: in this type of program, do brand ambassadors get free stuff? Yes, some ambassadors can get free stuff by openly promoting or supporting your brand. 

College Brand Ambassador Programs

The last type of program is the college brand ambassador program. It’s perfect for businesses whose target audience is students who fall under the 18-25 age bracket. This type of program can make room for fun promotional content. 

If you’re looking for an easy-to-use and effective tool to connect with the best ambassadors in your niche, read our review.

How to Structure a Brand Ambassador Program

The structure of your brand ambassador program will make or break your success as you venture into this marketing strategy. You may ask: how do you structure a brand ambassador program? Here are the top guidelines to structure your program for success.

Know the Goals Worth Aiming For

As mentioned, you may already have certain goals in mind when you think of working with ambassadors. However, it’s also important to know what goals are worth aiming for.

Try sitting down and do a brainstorming session of the goals you have initially in mind. After that, organize and set it up in a way that can give you an idea of what goals are worth achieving. Consider also the goals that are beneficial not only for your business but also to your target audience.

Simply Start and Start Simply

Are you held back by your constant desire to achieve things perfectly? Just know that this program isn’t the sum of your entire marketing efforts—it’s just a part of it. Instead of trying so hard to perfect your planning and organization, just simply start and do it simply.

Begin with outlining your objectives that are based on the goals you want to achieve. Make it clear so your potential ambassadors can easily get on board and immediately understand what you want to achieve.

Know the Suitable Type of Ambassador Program

bitcoin and US dollars
Finding the most suitable program for your brand will give you more profit and revenue.

As cited above, there are four possible ways to set up your brand ambassador programs. You can have a requirement-driven brand ambassador program, an affiliate type, an informal brand ambassador program, or a college program type.

Whatever you choose, always align it to your business and the products or services you offer. Make sure that it’s still feasible and that it won’t affect your budget for your other marketing endeavors.

Determine the Best Advocates for Your Brand

Upon selecting potential brand ambassadors, don’t simply choose the ones who only have a huge follower count. Choose an ambassador who actually believes in your brand and isn’t only there for the potential benefits or incentives that they can get from promoting your business.

To help you determine your brand advocates, you can start with those people who are using your products or availing of your services as paying customers. Such people include those who, without hesitation, upload images of your products on their social media accounts for no fee at all.

Recruit Potential Ambassadors the Best Way Possible

If you want to prove that your brand is credible and worth advertising for, see to it that you use the best channels to communicate with your ambassadors. As much as possible, avoid commenting incessantly on their posts to get them to be your ambassador. You’ll not only be annoying in their eyes, but their audience will also find you a nuisance.

Approach them as formally as possible and in private, too. You can also send your proposal through their business email. Recruiting your advocates the right and professional way may be tedious, but it’ll all be worth it in the end because it’ll be the start of a healthy relationship.

Learn and Identify Your Success Factors

Your success factors depend on the kind of business that you have. But to guide you, you can base it according to the type of content made by the ambassadors, the buzz it creates, and the results in traffic and sales of your business.

You can also set milestones. For instance, your first milestone may be gaining 1,000 Instagram followers in the first month after getting a brand ambassador on board. It could also be achieving a 50% increase in sales in the first two months, gaining 1000 e-newsletter subscriptions, or some other milestones.

Best Practices for a Health Brand Ambassador Relationship

Like any other relationship, your relationship with your brand ambassadors should be genuine and well-maintained. You shouldn’t just leave everything up to them to figure things out, especially if you have new stuff going on with your business. Hence, we give you some best practices you can follow to help you and your ambassadors maintain a problem-free collaboration.

Keep Your Ambassadors Updated

Do you have an upcoming product launch or company announcement? Always make sure that your ambassadors are on the same page. You also wouldn’t want them to keep on promoting a product with old packaging when you’d just launched a new one, right?

Get Their Feedback

two women and a man looking at a laptop screen
Good feedback is the key to improvement—it’s the secret weapon of business champions.

Your ambassadors are actual users of your product; hence they can be the best source of reliable feedback regarding your product’s quality. Keep an open mind, keep your pride at bay, and hear your ambassadors out. Who knows? They can even help your company reach greater heights.

You can build an influencer community to get feedback quickly. Read our Influicity review to get started.

Give Goal-Oriented Directions

To achieve your goals and objectives, make sure your advocates are also in it. And the best way to do that is to give them clear directions on how you want them to create content or capture a photo with your product.

Are You Ready to Start an Ambassador Program?

Managing a brand ambassador program is no rocket science but it’s also not a piece of cake. You need to put on a lot of work to ensure that your program will flow smoothly and it won’t destroy your relationship with your ambassadors and customers.

To know whether you’re ready for this type of program, ask yourself the following:

  • Am I confident of my product and service offerings? Am I ready to share it with an audience I didn’t directly build?
  • Do I have an existing customer base that’s satisfied with my current product and service offers? 
  • Are there any means to craft marketing campaigns other than the brand ambassador program?
  • Do I have an active social media presence that ambassadors can conveniently link to in their paid posts?

Other than these, you should also check if you belong to a highly-saturated and competitive industry and if you have a niche audience. Every buck and penny will be worth it if you belong because this type of program can surely help you stand out from a sea of competitors. 

While new brand ambassador programs are popping up across all sectors (from soft drinks to software), it can be especially effective if you’re targeting a niche audience. In smaller niches, there are usually a few prominent individuals who stand out and audiences follow. These are the individuals to invite to your brand ambassador program.

Ambassador Programs Work

top qualities of a good brand ambassador
Examine these qualities when you look for a brand ambassador, and you’ll surely get top-notch collaborations.

Now with basic knowledge of what a brand ambassador program is, are you willing to get on board and start on your own? You’ll still probably need more in-depth research about this marketing strategy but after reading our article, you’re already a step ahead of your competitors who haven’t tapped into this strategy yet.

Wondering how you can get the best ambassadors for your brand? Read our post “Attracting Influencers: How to Effectively Reach Out and Get the Best Influencers.”

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