| Héctor Puerta

| Héctor Puerta

In-house brand ambassador: why did I buy a SEAT and not a Renault?

Brand ambassador campaigns have become a very attractive option for organizations to reach their audiences

There is a lot of talk these days about brand ambassadors, but this concept is by no means new. I bought my first car more than 20 years ago. It was a second-hand Peugeot 405; I suspect with a few stories to tell. Two years later, when those stories started coming out of the exhaust pipe, I decided to buy a new car. I looked at several different brands, but in the end, I opted for a SEAT. A good friend of mine worked (and still does) as an engineer at the Technical Center, and he recommended the German-owned Spanish brand.

Undoubtedly, his recommendation had a strong influence on my confidence in the brand and my decision to buy. I didn’t know it yet, but over time I discovered that my friend was unconsciously acting as a brand ambassador for the company he worked for. Many of you have probably found yourselves in a similar situation at some point.

Definition of internal brand ambassador

According to Wikipedia, that online encyclopedia that no one trusts but we all consult, a brand ambassador is “a person engaged by an organization or company to represent its brand in a positive light, helping to increase brand awareness and sales.

In other words, a person who speaks highly of a brand. However, there are different types of brand ambassadors. The ones we will talk about in this article are the internal brand ambassadors, those who work in the company they represent, like my friend from SEAT.

The evolution of the brand ambassador

Over time, and with the rise of the Internet, social media, smartphones, WIFI networks and a host of other technologies, the role of brand ambassadors has evolved. Communication and information management have been modernized, and the opportunities for brands to reach their audiences have increased considerably, in many cases lowering costs. Now, the ambassador, as well as projecting the benefits of the brand through word of mouth, also does so using digital channels.

brand ambassadors example

6 advantages of projecting a company’s communication through internal brand ambassadors

For companies, having brand ambassadors on their teams has a number of advantages.

1. Generates public trust

In general, the trust we place in people is usually much greater than the trust we place in brands. Receiving a message from a real person is not the same as receiving it from a for-profit institution. In addition, receiving the message from a third party generates much more confidence than from the interested party itself.

Going back to my car, the conversation I had with my friend influenced me more than all the brand advertising campaigns I could have seen before. I wonder what car I would have bought if, instead of working at SEAT, my friend had worked at Renault.

2. It is more economical than other methods

Another advantage that internal brand ambassadors have for organizations is the cost. Running a brand ambassador campaign is cheaper than working with influencers, who tend to get paid extremely well for recommending a brand’s products and, of course, than launching expensive advertising campaigns.

Obviously, in this life everything costs money, and the implementation of a brand ambassador strategy and its subsequent development entails costs, but these are usually much more affordable than the strategies mentioned in the previous paragraph.

3. It is an ideal way to project the company’s values.

The projection of values is another benefit from having internal brand ambassadors, as they are in tune with the corporate values, believe in them and share them with pride.

Internal brand ambassadors will not only tell the organization’s audiences why they should buy its products or hire its services; they will also explain to them what moves are being made, whether or not they are taking their employees into account, whether they are concerned about the environment or whether they are undertaking Corporate Social Responsibility actions, for example. In short, they will project the company’s values and corporate culture, which will attract not only potential customers, but also talent.

At this point, it is worth remembering that, in modern companies, intangible assets represent more than half of the value of the company, so projecting the values and caring for the reputation of the brand is not a trivial matter.

4. It is an important source of data

An internal brand ambassador campaign also involves monitoring the actions of brand ambassadors. When a brand ambassador strategy is developed, the people who can best represent the company are chosen and communication axes and messages are defined. Once projected, it is time to analyze the results. The reactions and conversations generated by brand ambassadors’ posts are valuable information for the company, as they will be taking the pulse of their audiences.

Imagine if my friend at SEAT had shared with his manager what my preferences were, and those of his closest circles, when it came to choosing a car. The manager would have told his or her superior, and the superior would have told another superior, and the information would have ended up on the desk of the company’s CEO. This information would probably have guided them in making future decisions in line with the requirements of the demand.

5. Increases brand visibility

Internal brand ambassadors are an additional communication channel for organizations. As well as increasing the quality and credibility of messages, they also increase their visibility. Companies’ official channels are limited, so increasing ‘screen share’ with an army of brand ambassadors is a good way to reach more potential customers and other audiences of interest.

6. Communication is more authentic

The trend is that branded content will assume more prominence in the digital world in the next few years. The reason is very simple: people are increasingly tired of invasive advertising and companies know it. How many of you put up with the entire commercial before the video you want to watch on YouTube starts?

Forgive me advertisers, but advertising can be tiring, and even annoying. Working with brand ambassadors is an excellent way to convey the message in a natural, approachable, and authentic way. In short, in a human way.

brand ambassador definition types

The internal brand ambassador must be supported by your organization

Throughout this article, it has become clear that working with an internal brand ambassador strategy has multiple advantages for the company. However, this projection of the brand’s identity, values, corporate culture and even products and services must be based on the excellent work of the organization. There is no point in launching an internal brand ambassador campaign if our products or services are not able to meet the demands of our customers. Brand ambassadors are not magicians, but a genuine, credible, and more cost-effective means of reaching audiences.

Can you imagine if my SEAT had broken down two months after I bought it? Luckily, it turned out well. And that’s not just thanks to my friend.

Héctor Puerta

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