If you are a frequent reader of the Touvus blog or have ever heard me speak publicly about the industry, you know that I often use the term "Brand Ambassadors" about employees. For a long time, brand ambassadors were seen as something very separate. They were more like celebrity spokespeople. We've all seen Peyton Manning in Nationwide commercials or Jennifer Aniston rallying for Smartwater.
While these larger than life celebrity endorsements are great for large national brands, what about you and your small business. Should you be hiring a local celebrity for your radio commercials or print ads?
No. You have the best, most effective brand ambassadors already on the payroll. It's your staff.
These are your internal Brand Ambassadors. They are people who hopefully mention or recommend your brand freely. They are advocating your business for free.
Your employees should be your diehard fans. They should want to see your business succeed.
Why Are Brand Ambassadors So Important?
Promoting your business and image building can be both the hardest and simplest thing you do in terms of advertising.
According to a recent survey from Social Media Revolution, 78% are more likely to use a company based on peer recommendations. Genuine, real recommendations are the best type of brand advertisement. Herein lies the power of the Brand Ambassador.
If the audience knows that a person promoting the brand is not being paid to do so, they will more likely believe them. This type of word-of-mouth marketing works great.
Do your employees follow you on social media? Do they share posts?
Have they ever recommended you to their friends?
Do your employees believe in your business?
If not, it may be time to find out why or why not. It may be as simple as you are not posting enough or even having a social media presence. Maybe your employees aren't on social media.
While you can't control your employees' attitude or how they feel about you or the company, it is crucial to think about how they are talking about you outside the office.
If they aren't advocating for you, they are indirectly promoting other businesses.
If your employees are asked for a recommendation for service and comment that they should go elsewhere for a better deal or better customer service, you've lost a client.
And it is up to you to find out why.
It is also up to you to be a brand ambassador. I have several clients who didn't follow their own Facebook pages.
If YOU don't care about your business, why would anyone else?
It is a true trickle-down, if you care and are passionate about what you do, others will be too.
Be a leader; be a brand ambassador.
For more about becoming your own brand ambassador and training your employees to be brand ambassadors check the blog next week for a great informational guide to internal brand ambassadors.