The difference between a good company and a great one is usually not in what they do, but in how and why they do it, and one of the most important is your employees and how you use them.
One of the hardest yet most beneficial things you can do to your employees is making them to your brand’s ambassadors. As Richard Branson said: “ People see Virgin’s 50,000 employees as a cost to be managed, but I see 50,000 potential passionate brand ambassadors”.
A brand ambassador is someone who promotes or endorses a product, and while usually, they’re celebrities or public figures, there’s a growing trend of capitalizing on your workforce for this mission. The question is, how can you accomplish that?
Initially, you have to start reasonably small, because being a brand ambassador shouldn’t be another work task that your employees are obligated to do. A brand ambassador should be something that the employee wants to do rather than have to do. Use your HR department to identify the few individuals who can kick-start this venture, you can even seek out new recruits for it. Ideally, you need people who are active socially and have enough charm to represent you. Your brand ambassadors should seem authentic to win people over, so keep this key factor in mind.
Give Guidelines, but personalize it:
Before they start, your brand ambassadors need to know the essentials dos and don’ts, and focus more on the don’ts because they represent your brand and its values, and their slip-ups are your brand’s slip up. However, allow them to make it personal to them. Let each one of them convey your brand through them, and let them attach it to their personal brand and values. Giving them the freedom to personalize your message will show a sense of authenticity that helps build that trust in them and subsequently in your brand.
Create appealing content:
More often than not, brand ambassadors fail to win over people not because of them, but because the content they had just wasn’t appealing. The content you create for it should feel representative of your brand and values, and should have a link to one other as a theme or something. Above all, the content should feel like something your brand ambassadors want rather than have to share. This goes back to the key factor, authenticity.
Go bigger when the time is right:
After finishing a pre-defined term, you need to grow before continuing with the program. Your team of brand ambassadors should grow organically, don’t seek out people, rather let them seek the program. Attract them by incentives and competition. You can also use your established brand ambassadors as a selling point. As mentioned previously, focus on the specific skills required for the program, and be careful not to grow too big for your own good.
A brand ambassadors program is a great way to connect your employees to you and increase their sense of belonging.
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What are your thoughts around this? How beneficial do you think a brand ambassador is? Share with us in the comments below.