We’ve all seen brand ambassadors and influencers on Instagram. These users post beautiful, aspirational content on behalf of a brand or company.
Whenever you’re scrolling past a lovely cup of tea, sunrise at the peak of a mountain, a delicious home-cooked meal, the picture-perfect family outing, or any other appealing image, there’s a chance you’re looking at a brand ambassador’s post. Brand ambassadors are excited, engaged users who share a company’s content with their personal network.
These promotional programs can be structured in many ways, with some ambassadors acting as paid contract employees and others simply adding a hashtag on posts about products they love. Whether you’re a marketing professional who wants to enhance your company’s promotional campaigns or are an individual ready to become an influencer, brand ambassador programs offer many advantages.
Learn all about brand ambassadors on Instagram, including how both companies and private users can benefit from these partnerships.
All About Instagram Brand Ambassadors
Spend any time on Instagram and you’ll come across a brand ambassador. These users post highly stylized, visually appealing content to their personal accounts, but dig into captions and hashtags and you’ll find that the influencer is promoting a brand or company. Brand ambassador programs are widespread, with both companies and individuals benefiting from the arrangement. Learn all about Instagram brand ambassadors, including how each party benefits and how you can try to become an ambassador.
What Is A Brand Ambassador?
Brand ambassadors are individuals who highlight a brand or company through their personal channels. Instagram brand ambassadors are people who post Instagram content on behalf of a brand. However, the original term “brand ambassador” comes from the concept of a marketing funnel, which describes the deepening relationship a customer could experience with a brand.
The marketing funnel begins with awareness, where a person is just discovering a problem or opportunity in their life. Upon engaging with a brand, this person enters the marketing funnel, potentially learning more about the company, engaging with marketing campaigns, and ideally, converting. Ambassadors are fully engaged, converted customers who are so happy with their experience that they begin to promote the brand to their own network.
In modern social media usage, the brand ambassador relationship is formalized. Many companies offer ambassador programs where they solicit and reward brand representatives. Ambassadors can receive awards including financial payment, free or discounted merchandise, exclusive access, early product announcements, and more.
What’s In It For The Brand?
Companies can enjoy many benefits from offering a brand ambassador program. Ambassadors are valuable sources of free or discounted marketing. Different companies offer different compensation strategies. Rewards based on information require few resources and are easy for brands to offer. Some ambassadors receive perks like password-protected site access, early shopping hours, and exclusive newsletter updates. These strategies create a sense of exclusivity at a low cost. Even when brands provide payment with money or merchandise, the company has still saved resources it might have spent in-house on promotions the ambassador performed.
Brand ambassadors also expose companies to new, warm audiences. Ambassadors use their existing social capital, or their influence on their network of friends, family, and followers. A company enjoys the benefit of a personal recommendation, offered at a large scale.
What’s In It For The Ambassador?
Ambassador programs are beneficial for brands, but they can be rewarding for the individual ambassadors as well. The most lucrative ambassador programs provide real financial compensation. These ambassadors function as contractors, offering a service within a set framework. Companies that offer merchandise or discounts can still offer value to ambassadors even if they’re not directly paying for services.
In addition to payments and discounts, ambassadors in such positions can leverage their relationships for future success. Influencers can build a marketing portfolio that highlights successful partnerships. Ambassadors with a proven track record are more likely to win further contracts and collaborations.
Some ambassadors are drawn to these partnerships for the potential benefits and exposure, but other influencers still fall under the traditional meaning of the relationship. These ambassadors are driven purely by their love of a brand. They would share the word about their experiences without receiving any reward at all.
How Can You Become A Brand Ambassador?
If you’re interested in becoming a brand ambassador, there are a few paths available to you.
First, you should solidify your personal brand. This will help you narrow down the available partnerships and find a company that’s a good fit for your deepest values.
Companies want to work with Instagram users who have an established following and brand identity.
Work on holistically building your followers and establishing your personal values while you’re searching for brand programs.
Next, consider the brands you’re already passionate about.
Take a look at the companies you already follow on Instagram, as well as the clothes in your closet, food in your kitchen, content on your streaming service, and the other products you love to use. Your current favorite brands are the ideal starting points for your journey into brand ambassadorship.
Research these brands and see if they offer an ambassador, referral, or affiliate program.
Look up brand names in Instagram’s search feature. Many brands use their name or something similar as a hashtag for their ambassador posts. You can also look on the brand’s main feed for more details. If brands repost user-generated photos and other content, this is a great sign that they work with ambassadors.
Once you identify a brand ambassador program you’d like to join, find out how they select their members.
Some brands openly post this information in their Instagram profile or on their website, but other companies make details hard to find. If you can’t uncover the information, you can consider sending a direct message to a current ambassador or to the brand itself.
Whether or not you’re able to join your target company as a brand ambassador right away, you should keep your own social media branding in mind.
You’ll be more appealing to companies when you bring a clearcut mission to the table.