What business wouldn’t want to improve its brand image, increase visibility and increase website traffic? All of these goals can be achieved by brand ambassadors. If you choose the right person, they can open up new channels of communication.
What are brand ambassadors? Who are they and why is it important? They are the company’s business partners that use word-of mouth marketing to promote products and services. This type of marketing is used to influence 92% of consumers into purchasing.
Brand ambassadors can also be great content creators. They inspire people to buy everything from expensive jewelry to natural fruit snacks through their blogs and videos. This article will discuss the role of brand ambassadors in driving sales and other benefits of investing in such partnerships for eCommerce.
Two Types Of Brand Ambassadors
Brand ambassadors can be described as well-known personalities. It is important that brand ambassadors are influential enough to appeal only to a certain group of people.
They share the same values as the business and have loyal followers that fit the target market. This audience is willing to listen to their recommendations and buy specific products or services. There are two main types of brand ambassadors.
Bloggers, celebrities and opinion leaders are all considered to be influencers. They have demonstrated that they have the knowledge and expertise in a particular field. There are five types depending on how many followers they have on Social Media.
- Nano-influencers (1,000 – 10,000 followers);
- Micro-influencers (100,00 to 100,000 followers)
- Mid-influencers (100,000. – 500,000 followers).
- Macro-influencers (upto one million followers);
- Mega-influencers (more that one million followers)
Influencers reach a broad audience and influence their behavior. They are more valuable than those who are less popular. These are people that you can hire based upon the following criteria:
- whether their image/voice/content/etc. Your brand fits their image/voice/content.
- Which people they are targeting;
- They are so engaging
- Among others.
These ambassadors can be paid in cash, items or services. They are usually more professional and have managers who can negotiate terms of collaboration. Because it is a clear exchange, these relationships are easier to manage.
Below is a screenshot of seven ambassadors for Lacoste representing different characters and countries. They are generally macro- and mega-influencers.
Screenshot taken from the official Lacoste website
2. True fans
These ambassadors are people who have shown brand loyalty, visible advocacy, love for your products, and demonstrated brand commitment. These ambassadors can be existing customers or employees.
True fans have a smaller number of followers that they can influence.
- or random social media followers.
Their word-of-mouth referrals have power and are considered more trustworthy and genuine. Your fans don’t have to be paid. You can have them as ambassadors for free, providing online reviews and user-generated content.
Here’s how Levi’s encourages customers to take photos in Levi’s clothes and tag them using a hashtag.
Screenshot taken from the Levi’s official website
5 Benefits of Brand Ambassadors in eCommerce Business
If you don’t provide quality products and services, partnering with influencers will not bring your online store the desired volume of sales. If you aren’t able to provide users with a fast page load speed, seamless navigation and a positive user-experience, it will not be a good idea.
You should pay attention to standard optimization techniques for your eCommerce website, or you can go the extra mile and adopt a headless commerce approach. What does this mean for customers? Customers will be able shop using TVs, voice assistants, or other devices than smartphones and desktop computers.
Let’s now get to the five benefits brand ambassadors can bring online merchants.
1. Increase traffic to your website and grow the brand
How can influencer marketing and brand ambassadors help your eCommerce website? Targeted buyers can be attracted to your website .
Let’s say you have a business in the United States, and that you want to expand it to Canada. There is likely to be a market already established and strong competitors. It will be difficult for your store gain trust. This is why you need local brand ambassadors.
They can easily incorporate the company into their daily lives, creating buzz about its products. This creates a positive image for the company.
Brand ambassadors may have their own blogs on Instagram and YouTube. They might use their word power to link back and refer to your resource.
What are their methods? They can provide feedback about your products and services, offer giveaways, or use storytelling. You also have live-streaming and polls. It will increase your inbound traffic and help you reach potential clients who don’t already follow you on social networks.
Live streaming is one of the best ways boost traffic to your website. Invite people you know and give them valuable tips. You can see below how Soko Glam uses this opportunity and provides a link to the product.
Screenshot taken from the official Soko Glam Instagram page
2. Protecting Reputation
It is important to consider how your brand appears in the eyes of potential buyers. When making buying decisions, every customer will consider the brand reputation. That’s why it is so important to have a strong one. It’s not enough to create it. You also need to protect it. You’ll lose revenue from your company otherwise.
Shoppers are increasingly concerned about social causes and seek out brands and products that align with them. A study by IBM found that 70% of consumers will pay 35% more to support sustainable brands. Here’s how brand ambassadors can help you.
Paul Mitchell, the world’s leading professional haircare manufacturer, is my example. Since its inception in 1980, the company has never used animal cruelty. These beliefs are still held by the company.
With the support of Winnie Harlow, its first global ambassador, it emphasizes its desire to be a fashion model. This collaboration is logical as it allows Winnie Harlow, a public figure, to promote the brand’s values to her global audience of 9.1 millions followers on Instagram.
Screenshot taken from the official Paul Mitchell website
Let’s now take negative news as an illustration. Ambassadors can help protect your company from defamation or other negative comments. Their input can help to neutralize the situation and positive portray your company.
3. Humanizing the Brand
How can you connect with a company when shopping online? It’s just a name and an image that we see on the screen. To give your company an emotional touch , work with brand ambassadors.
What makes ambassadors different from professional models? Ambassadors share their lives, children and hobbies, as well as offering advice. We monitor the lives of our friends and provide advice.
It will look natural and genuine if they mention the company in their content. It’s what customers and you want. Advocates help brands come to life and make them real.
Let’s take a look at Lululemon, an athletic apparel brand. It has two categories of program, based on brand ambassadors.
- Global Ambassadors: Professional athletes and coaches;
- Local yoga instructors, fitness professionals, and other small influencers can be Store Ambassadors.
Screenshot taken from the official Lululemon site
They are responsible for promoting the Lululemon culture. They conduct workshops online or offline and show how Lululemon clothes, accessories and shoes work in real life. It is through fitness that the brand can make real connections with its customers.
Ambassadors also share photos with prospects and have conversations with them. That’s what gives life to the brand.
4. Giving a positive word-of-mouth
Brand ambassadors are highly connected in the business and have a large online following. It can be beneficial to utilize their assistance in increasing awareness.
If you have 12 ambassadors and 10,000 followers, your reach can be increased to 120,000. You can also grow if celebrities are involved.
Do you need more evidence of ambassadors’ effectiveness at driving sales? Statistics show that advertising and traditional channels fail in 83% cases. 89% will read reviews before buying.
Here’s Lynsey Anastasia (youtube star) explains about Vegamour products, how she uses them and how they help. She also includes a link to the store, and offers a discount for even more prospects.
Screenshot taken from Lynsey Anstasia’s YouTube channel
5. Strengthening Your Social Media Marketing
Many retailers have turned to social media and the internet in response to the pandemic. This is not just because communication is important. Social media is an important source of selling products .
How can your eCommerce store stand out from the rest? Social media influencers are the best option. These social media influencers have a loyal following and are social media stars. You should consider collaborating with them if your audience is similar.
A brand ambassador will help you promote your company to their target audience. Influencers can share branded content and links with their followers. You can also offer product bundles or free samples in return.
But not all clients are subscribed to your brand ambassador. This content could be missed out on its potential for convincing other users. To expand your reach beyond the influencer’s account, you can repost such content to your online shop’s feed.
Tentree, an apparel company, takes photos of customers wearing its clothes and shares them. Here’s one of Ashley Tham’s posts. She is a digital creator with nearly 3,000 followers.
Screenshot taken from the official Tentree Instagram page
What are the key points to remember when choosing brand ambassadors? You should choose them based upon your target audience and their followers. You might, for example, cater to the same gender, age, and location as them.
Let’s say you have found the perfect candidate. But, the question is: What if you don’t have the budget to hire celebrities and influencers with millions of followers? You might consider collaborating with smaller influencers and loyal customers. They are more influential and engaged than “bigger persons”.
Why should you invest in brand ambassadors? They are there to help you develop your brand. Recognize that to rise to the top, any company must be easily identifiable and visible. This choice will allow you to achieve these goals.
Scoop.it Blog published the article The Role of Brand Ambassadors In eCommerce Marketing.