What is a Brand Ambassador Program?
A brand ambassador program is a marketing strategy that brands use to hire people to represent the business in a positive light, usually helping increase brand awareness and sales. These ambassadors do not necessarily always have a big following, but perhaps have the ability to reach a target audience that the brand alone cannot. For example, many brands hire “regular” college students to be brand ambassadors in order to reach the college-age demographic.
The programs typically have trainings for the ambassadors in order to educate them on not only the brand’s products and services, but also their mission and values. The programs can be ongoing, but most are for a set period of time. Additionally, ambassadors are always compensated for their work with money, services, products, or resources. Payment is crucial in every brand ambassador program.
Brand ambassadors vs. influencers
Brand ambassadors and influencers have a few notable differences.
- Are typically free to represent any other brand they choose
- Always receive compensation
- Don’t always have huge social media followings
- Are loyal to the brands they work with, especially because they must protect their personal brand and choose brand partnerships accordingly
- Sometimes are willing to work with brands for free, especially when they are micro-influencers who believe in the brand
- Have big social media followings, and can shift the perception and purchasing decisions of their followers
However, the two are grouped together at times. This is because some influencers are also ongoing brand ambassadors. When a brand finds the right influencer to collaborate with, the influencer is able to create authentic content, reach target audiences, and generate sales for the brand. When this is the case, the brand will likely want to keep them on board as a brand ambassador.