The BizFilings blog covering business tips and trends.
You Already Have a Brand Ambassador
Published on Dec 5, 2012
Check out 'You Already Have a Brand Ambassador' at 'Time to Start Up,' the small business blog by BizFilings.
By Matthew Toren
A brand ambassador can mean a few different things. You may be hiring a local celebrity for a series of appearances at public events. You may be merging your sales team, marketing team, and customer service team into a powerhouse position. Ultimately, utilizing a brand ambassador is about putting a human face on a product. Brands are built in the connections between people. Since branding is a perception, the communication of people’s perception to one another ultimately defines your brand. If you want to utilize a brand ambassador, have a look at your loyal customers. These are the kinds of people that can represent your company with passion and dedication.
Or you can hire Michael Jordan. Though having a celebrity face behind your business is alluring and effective, it’s usually not an option for most small-business owners. Of course, celebrity is rated on a sliding scale. People can be recognizable in more local scales, and authority figures exist in every niche. You don’t need to hire professional athletes or actors to capitalize on the power of popularity.
A group of brand ambassadors can be a great way to spread awareness through social networks. Finding these people among your customers will ensure that they genuinely enjoy your product or service, and understand it on an intimate level. Who better than that to promote your business with tweets, blogs, and other social media efforts? These types of loyal customers are already sharing information about your business, or at least they want to. Your job is to facilitate that process.
They Can Improve Your Product
There is always room for improvement and growth. Generating ideas and experimenting is an essential part of any success story. Because they are genuine fans of your business, brand ambassadors can deliver helpful input on new products or services. They know what they enjoy, and they can articulate their desires and expectations to you. This kind of feedback can be very valuable when coming up with new ideas. Think of it like a free focus group.
Word of Mouth Beats All
Though marketing evolves, it remains a rule that word of mouth is the best way to spread information. People inherently want to share something they find illuminating or enjoyable. The web has of course enhanced the capabilities of this communication. People want to hear their friend’s opinions. As friendliness now reaches through computer screens across the world, word of mouth has as exponential amount of points of genesis.
Create a Thriving Environment
Try and facilitate this communication process by recognizing your loyal and passionate customers and rewarding them. Create a forum that allows them to communicate easily. Throw events and build personal relationships. Run ideas by them and take their contributions seriously. You’re goal here should be to create situations that are fun and generate excitement, so don’t be afraid to let your hair down as well.
With online social presence becoming increasingly more important, brand ambassadors seem like a logical evolutionary step. Consider utilizing them in your business to increase awareness, generate buzz, and help create fresh ideas.
Matthew Toren is a serial entrepreneur, mentor, investor and co-founder of YoungEntrepreneur.com. He is co-author, with his brother Adam, of the award winning books, Kidpreneurs and Small Business, BIG Vision: Lessons on How to Dominate Your Market from Self-Made Entrepreneurs Who Did it Right. Their latest project is a free classified ads network called: iSell.com.