Brand ambassadors do more than present a product—they are a part of the entire presentation. These employees stand at the front line of your business by introducing your brand and product to consumers. This experience has the power to make or break the consumers’ perception of your brand and in turn, can create or deter the sale. For this reason, you want to identify individuals who enjoy engaging people—individuals who are warm, friendly, and approachable.
Skills to Look For
Outgoing and engaging individuals will excel in the brand ambassador role. Clear and effective communication is easy to detect in your conversation and is a necessity for a candidate to have in order to be successful. He/she should be able to educate the consumer on your product and generate sales. You may want to ask interview questions around:
- Past experience staying organized at work
- Past customer service experience
- Working knowledge of appliances and cooking techniques (if applicable)
- Having a flexible schedule
- Willingness to learn new techniques and products
It should also be made clear that the candidate may be standing on his/her feet for hours at a time and may need to lift boxes. Be sure that any physical requirements and the need for reliable transportation are listed in your job description and employment agreement.
Where to Seek Talent
Not everyone who is retired has physical restrictions that prevent him or her from walking and standing. Many retirees live very active and physically engaging lives, and often, they have flexible schedules. A brand ambassador opportunity may be ideal for some who wants to pick up a few hours of work or just to get out of the house and around people. Consider reaching out to local senior centers or retirement communities to post your job in their newsletter or hang your flyer on their announcement board. You might also coordinate a quick presentation at the beginning of one of their upcoming events or meetings where you can talk through the job requirements and benefits. This could be an opportunity to meet potential candidates.
Most college students are interested in picking up extra income, and their vibrancy can add a bright lift to the customers’ shopping experience. Consider reaching out to your local colleges and universities to learn about upcoming job fairs or advertising opportunities. They may have a job board, website or newspaper for local job postings.
Online Career Sites
Let the talent come to you by placing your open position in front of people who are actively job seeking. Indeed, Craigslist, LinkedIn and Facebook’s new job feature are free options that millions of job seekers are using. Be sure that your posting is written concisely using bullet points and clearly lists all of the requirements for the job. You want to weed out anyone that isn’t fit for the job as to not waste anyone’s time. Be clear about what you are looking for in a candidate.
Social media is the new word of mouth. It is free and easy to get your job posting in front of people through the use of social sharing. Post your job description on your company or personal Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter pages and encourage followers to share.
To cast a wider net, be sure to use hashtags like #NowHiring or #Jobs. Placing the city where the job is located in a hashtag can help local candidates find your opening. Adding a photo to your social post can help it gain traction as well as it is more visually appealing and can grab a person’s attention better than just plain text. An effective social post might look like this:
#NowHiring: friendly, goal-oriented brand ambassadors for a food company. Learn more and apply today: [insert link to your job posting] #ChicagoJobs
You can also join groups on Facebook. Some examples that can help you reach your target audience are local neighborhoods, moms, seniors and colleges/universities. You can find available groups in your area using Facebook’s search bar. Join the group(s) of your choosing and post your job for wider visibility.
If your business is growing and you are constantly hiring, you might consider having signage about career opportunities at your demos. You never know which job seekers might be shopping! Hanging flyers in local stores, yoga studios, community centers and more could be another great recruiting method.
Who knows the job better than your own employees? If you can, offer a referral incentive to your current brand ambassadors if you hire a friend he/she recommended. This encourages social sharing which can help boost your brand as well!
Once you’ve hired the right candidates, training is crucial. Training might include role-playing with customer personas, explaining how to properly set up displays, answering questions about the products as well as setting short-term and long-term goals. You should schedule regular trainings with your brand ambassadors to keep them up-to-date on any changes happening within the company or with the product itself. Empowering your brand ambassadors with key product knowledge is critical to your demo program’s success.
Depending on where you’re located, you may need to streamline training to brand ambassadors spread across a wide geography. Remote video conferencing is practical, timely, and cost-effective. Tools like Skype, Zoom or Google Hangouts are great solutions that are free (up to a certain number of users) and easy to set up. Their chat features allow participants to ask or answer questions while you’re presenting the training. You can also record your meetings so that you can reference questions asked or even reuse your training in the future.
Google Drive is a free site where you can house your training documents and videos for easy employee access. You can share a link to your company’s Drive folders with your brand ambassadors so that they can access them at any time. Google Docs, Sheets, Slides and more allow users to work on the same document at the same time, which is crucial for collaboration and organization.
Communicating with Brand Ambassadors
With today’s technology, it is easy to keep in touch with your employees. Connecting face-to-face can help to boost morale and keep employees engaged. Scheduling regular meetings to check in on your brand ambassadors and receive feedback is crucial.
Meeting via video conference is a more effective method of communication and motivation than email. Collaboration tools like Slack, Microsoft Teams or Workplace by Facebook are inexpensive and easy ways to keep in touch with your employees. Each have mobile apps that can send notifications to your field, keep them in-the-know with a real-time chatting feature. If communication is quick and easy for employees, they will be encouraged to do it more often. You can set up different channels or groups for certain regions, stores, products, etc. Getapp.com compares the pricing, features, and integrations of these tools.
No matter how tasty a sample may be, if the brand ambassador is rude or is not helpful, the customer will run away fast without considering purchasing the product. Having open discussions with your employees and listening to what they think can be improved is important. Transparency is key to keeping them happy and retaining the talent that you’ve spent resources on to hire and train. If you have any questions about how to make managing your demos easier, please contact us.