Using Ambassadors To Help Tell Your Story
September 28, 2022
Most organizations today operate in a crowded marketplace and are faced with an ever-changing (if not shrinking) media landscape in which to share their stories. Given this, being more strategic and creative when communicating with your various stakeholders may be necessary.
Offering up the usual spokesperson or well-spoken executive to provide key messages is still worthwhile, but you may want to cast a wider net when it comes to identifying and utilizing credible people who can help share your message across a variety of available channels.
You have probably heard the term “brand ambassador” used, as it describes someone who helps an organization promote their brand. In a similar fashion, ambassadors (or surrogates) can also be utilized when it comes to conveying key messages. This communication strategy can be particularly effective when dealing with hot button-type issues, where having a credible third-party corroborate and/or share your view can add legitimacy to your organization’s stated position.
But identifying and preparing an appropriate ambassador to help “sing your praises” should not be taken lightly, as selecting the wrong person for the role can be damaging to your reputation, credibility and overall brand – so, choose wisely.
Here are a few thoughts and recommendations to consider:
An “ambassador communicator” can be a good strategy
- It can broaden your reach and connection with audiences (even new ones).
- It provides another level of credibility for your organization.
- It shows how others view and/or care for your organization.
- It can elevate your message and give it a new level of importance, especially if the ambassador is an influencer or a community leader.
Identify potential ambassadors
- You need to seek them out, engage them and commit to keeping them informed.
- Who is a skilled communicator with a connection to your organization? Are they persuasive, credible and coachable?
- Ambassadors could be board members, employees, customers, vendors, etc. with a good story to tell.
Provide your ambassadors resources and training
- Help them help you; make sure they have the information, support and appropriate outlet(s) to say something good about your organization.
- Develop a speakers bureau you can utilize, as needed. This could include internal subject matter experts, or external people connected in some way to your organization – all of whom could be provided with speaking training and skill-building opportunities.
Use ambassador stories to develop content for your owned channels
- Getting the media to utilize your handpicked ambassador(s) can be tricky and is not always guaranteed.
- Ambassador stories are great for owned outlets, like newsletters, social media posts, special events, videos, annual reports, blog posts, podcasts, etc. – all of which can provide exposure to both internal and external audiences.
- You want their stories to be genuine and in their own words, so help your ambassadors look and sound the very best they can when sharing their messages.
Bottom line, you need to be intentional and strategic about how you identify, develop and utilize ambassadors to help meet your communications-related goals and objectives. Do it right and it can be a powerful way to have someone help share your story. Good luck!
Blog by Mark Yontz