Have you run into “ad blindness” from consumers and find that your traditional forms of marketing are becoming less effective?
In response to marketing frustrations, brands are looking for new avenues to advertise their brands. What if I told you that there is a marketing strategy that you can implement today that is cost-effective and will power your brand?
That’s where brand ambassadors come in. Specifically, consumers as brand ambassadors.
92% of people rely on their friends and family for brand and product recommendations. To reach these friends and family it is as easy as tapping into your consumer base. Don’t know how to start? That’s where this post comes in.
Why Consumers are So Valuable
Consumers have already experienced your brand, so you don’t have to onboard them or educate them about your brand. They have all of the information they need to recommend your brand to their friends and family on their social media channels.
A good brand ambassador program is rooted in authenticity. Consumers know when a post is natural or if it is forced. Your happy consumers can authentically recommend your brand to their friends and family.
The average person has 400 followers on their social media channels. So, you do the math, think of how many people you can reach if you recruit 50 or more consumers as your brand ambassadors.
Since your consumers already own your product, you don’t need to send them a product and they can take natural photos and spout authentic words when it comes to your brand.
What Makes an Ideal Brand Ambassador
Ideal brand ambassadors are pretty simple. They are happy consumers who want to share information about your brand.
A good brand ambassador is communicative and willing to post about your brand. They are active on social media and like to be among the first in their network to recommend a new product.
How do you uncover these brand ambassadors? There are a few ways. Consulting with your client services team to uncover happy consumers is a great place to start. Another way is to survey your consumers on their brand experience to identify those that are happy.
How to Incentivize Your Consumers to Post About Your Brand
Sometimes your consumers need a little bit of a nudge to post about your brand. This can be done by incentivizing them to post on their social media channels. A little incentive can go a long way and be a lot more cost-effective than other forms of marketing. Consider new products from your brand, monetary compensation, or significant brand discounts.
Manually reaching out to consumers and tracking whether or not they’ve posted can be a tedious task. That’s why I was excited to find CrewFire which organizes the process of building a brand ambassador network with your consumers. Their app streamlines the process of rewarding consumers for posting about brands.
Nurturing Your Consumer Relationships
Part of what makes a well-oiled brand ambassador program is strong relationships with happy consumers. There are many ways to nurture these relationships to turn consumers into brand ambassadors and keep them as such. Some tactics include:
- Sending personal thank you emails or handwritten cards
- Rewarding them for their advocacy
- Featuring their posts on your brand’s social channels
- Giving them “inside information” about your brand before announcing new products or features to the world
- Asking for their input on new products
- Sending them free items from your brand on a consistent basis
Making the Most Out of Your Earned Media from Ambassadors
Not only can earned media from your consumers spark brand awareness and generate sales, there is a lot of leverage you can get out of this type of content.
You can utilize consumer-generated content on your social media channels, your website, your marketing emails and sales materials. People love hearing about your brand from their peers rather than from your brand itself so feature your consumers’ content wherever possible.
Brand Ambassador KPI’s
Of course, you’ll want to track your brand ambassador program just like you would with other marketing initiatives. Consider implementing these KPI’s:
Impressions: How many people saw the posts your consumers posted
Engagement: How many likes, shares, comments, etc. these posts have earned
Traffic: Note how many new visitors your consumer posts bring to your website by equipping consumers with UTM parameters
Revenue: Track how many sales each post brings in
Consumers are an untapped resource for many brands. They have the power to recommend your brand in an authentic way to their friends and family. Consumers as brand advocates are scalable with the right tools and have the potential to bring in more revenue than your other marketing strategies.
The reason why earned content from happy consumers is so valuable is because it is honest and people trust their friends and family when it comes to brand and product recommendations.
Lastly, don’t hesitate to incentivize consumers to power this strategy.
Do you have a strategy in place to equip consumers as brand ambassadors? I’d love to hear all about it in the comments below!
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