There are a number of misconceptions about brand ambassadors. Dominique Packham, Staffing Director at Sense, puts the record straight.
1) They are all ‘resting’ actors
Brand ambassadors actually come from a wide variety of backgrounds, with a whole range of skills and experience. The Sense database includes students, dancers, models, singers, mothers, chefs, ex-bankers, full time promo-ers. You name it, we have it. Yes, we also have actors and love the skills they bring to promotional marketing, but we also appreciate everyone else!
2) They are judged purely on their looks
The best promotional marketing staff are engaging, intelligent, good communicators, charismatic and have great personalities. Yes, they also need to be presentable, and certain projects require a touch of glamour, but looks alone don’t count.
3) They are not the sharpest tools in the box
Nothing could be further from the truth. You may not need a million A-levels or to a masters degree to be a good brand ambassador, but you do need to be able to think quickly on your feet, so intelligence and an agile mind are essential. Plus you need to be a good problem solver, be quick witted and interesting to talk to, and have an abundance of common sense.
4) They lack commitment and are only in it for the money
Being a brand ambassador is no easy ride. It can be highly demanding work, as you always need to be on you toes and ready for the unexpected to happen. It is also very rewarding for those who like excitement, meeting people and travelling. Promotional staff are also monitored regularly, and those lacking commitment, enthusiasm or a strong work ethic don’t last long.
5) They only know what they’re doing, not why they’re doing it
When sourcing promotional staff, always make sure the agency you use thoroughly briefs their brand ambassadors about the campaign, from getting under the skin of your brand to understanding the strategy behind the activity. A full briefing with the client is recommended, along with a detailed run through of the implementation. Make sure the staffing agency you use carefully trains their brand ambassadors for each job.
6) They often ‘improve’ results when reporting
This benefits neither the staffing agency nor the client brand. If an experiential campaign falls short of its target everyone needs accurate feedback to make sure lessons are learned so that the intelligence is available to improve it next time. Make this clear to the agency you use from the outset. Also make sure they regularly monitor the activity as it’s taking place, so that any concerns can be addressed on the ground, if possible, to get things back on track.
Dominique Packham is Staffing Director as real world marketing agency Sense.