Planning and executing a successful event requires a lot of time and teamwork! The reality is, many organizations simply don’t have enough time or enough team members to get everything done. Paid employees are often stretched thin running day-to-day operations, and many of the critical event tasks get pushed aside or pushed further down the to-do list. Most organizations don’t have the financial resources to hire more employees to help and staff special events, fundraisers or festivals. Brand ambassadors are economical and effective additions to your event marketing team who can help promote your event.
What Is A Brand Ambassador?
A brand ambassador is anyone – paid or unpaid – who believes in your cause or product, and wants to promote your event or brand to the public; typically by word-of-mouth and on social media and digital platforms like blog posts or video. Often they are the 1st contact someone has with your brand when promoting your event and at the event itself.
- Paid employees can promote your event to their personal contacts and relationships like friends and family.
- Volunteers can be given messaging to share with their family and friends.
- Followers and fans can amplify your message by reposting and sharing your social media posts.
- Board members could encourage their colleagues to support your event.
- Vendors and service providers can be asked to share your event with their employees and other customers.
- Donors who financially support your cause can also help promote your event.
Brand ambassadors use their voice and influence to spread your message.
What’s The Difference Between A Brand Ambassador and an Influencer?
Brand ambassadors usually already have a long-term relationship with a brand, such as an employee, a board member or a volunteer.
- Influencers typically have a short-term relationship with the brand, often for a single event or for a contractual period.
- Influencers are chosen because they have a large or coveted social media following which will help the brand achieve its goals.
- Brand ambassadors voluntarily promote your brand, while influencers are recruited to promote your brand.
Provide Brand Ambassador Training
Brand ambassadors – both paid and unpaid – can only be effective if they are trained on your social media policies, branding, voice and messaging, and given guidelines for resharing or responding to others’ posts. If your brand ambassador is already involved with your organization as an employee, volunteer or board member they will need additional training on your event message and branding.
HR Cloud has training guidelines for using employee brand ambassadors to amplify your message; these same training rules can be the foundation for training your unpaid brand ambassadors:
- In order to empower your brand ambassadors, you must have a social media policy that’s positive and inclusive.
- Rather than focusing on what could go wrong, you want to think about the benefits to be gained when your employees are knowledgeable, comfortable, and encouraged to share online.
- Provide social media training on various channels (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) and ensure your employees have content to share.
- Create specific hashtags for employees to use and encourage them to use it across all platforms.
Once you have launched your brand ambassador program and trained your new brand ambassadors, remember to incentivize them to continue promoting your event.
Everyone likes to be thanked, your ambassador recognition program can include private thanks such as handwritten notes of appreciation, or public recognition like shout-outs on social media.
Your brand ambassadors are often your front-line face to the public. Include your brand ambassadors in your event evaluation and planning by asking for feedback, requesting campaign and messaging ideas, and using their expertise and ideas for future event planning.
Everyone likes swag, and your brand ambassadors will proudly show off their swag and further promote your event. Consider providing some swag exclusively for your brand ambassadors:
- phone pockets
- disposable sunglasses
- sunglass croakies
Brand Ambassadors Are The Key to Successful Events
Brand ambassadors are a valuable marketing tool to promote and manage your event. To maximize their effectiveness and avoid potential miscommunications both paid and unpaid ambassadors require and deserve training, support and feedback.