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How to Measure and Improve College Brand Ambassador Performance

By collegemktgrp | September 23, 2019 | Brands/Advertisers

Student brand ambassadors are an essential tool for promoting your company on college campuses:

But having a brand ambassador isn’t worth much if they aren’t effective at promoting your company on campus. That’s is why you need a system in place to measure the success (or lack thereof) of your college student brand ambassadors.

From choosing the right key performance indicators (KPIs) to having a plan for improvement, here’s our guide to measuring the effectiveness of your college student brand ambassadors.

4 Steps to a Better College Student Brand Ambassador Program

In order to measure the performance of your brand ambassadors, you need to define the goals of your program and then come up with the KPIs that will help you determine whether or not you’re achieving those goals.

Regular measurement of those KPIs will tell you where you need improvement, and you can adjust accordingly to help your ambassadors reach the goals you’ve established.

Step 1: Define the Goals of Your Program

If you’re looking to increase revenue, then your goals might be based around sales, website traffic, and conversions.

On the other hand, if you want to use a brand ambassador program to attract the best and brightest recruits to your company, then your goals might be based on how many resumes you receive.

Your goals should include a specific number and a specific timeline — something that can be measured and definitively achieved.

For example, instead of a goal of “increase sales”, your goal might be “increase sales by 8% in one year.

And rather than “get more applications”, your goal could be “increase application submissions by 10% in the next 6 months.

Step 2: Establish KPIs

KPIs are metrics that provide information about whether you’re achieving the goals you’ve defined. The best KPIs are SMART: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and attached to a defined Timeline.

Here are some KPIs you can use to measure the performance of your brand ambassadors:

Social Media KPIs

  • Likes: How many likes do your brand ambassadors get on their posts?
  • Comments: How many comments do your brand ambassadors get on their posts?
  • Number of Posts: How many posts do each of your brand ambassadors make?
  • Followers: How many followers do your brand ambassadors have? How many followers does your company have?

Website KPIs

  • Traffic: How many leads does each brand ambassador generate?
  • eCommerce Sales: How much revenue does each brand ambassador generate?

Recruitment KPIs

  • Applications: How many resumes has each of your brand ambassadors collected?
  • Events: How many recruitment events has each ambassador organized?
  • Attendance: How many students are in attendance at recruitment events?

Step 3: Measure KPIs

Each KPI requires its own approach to measurement. You need to define how and how often you will collect data for each KPI.

For social media-related KPIs, you could go through each brand ambassador’s profile and count how many posts they made in the last month, the average likes per post, etc. But this is only potentially feasible if you have a pretty small ambassador program.

More likely, you’ll want to use a metrics analyzer, which can provide you with reports on all of your KPIs and more on whatever timeline you establish. Some popular tools include Keyhole, Hootsuite, BrandMentions, and the influence-tracker Khoros (formerly known as Klout).

You can also create custom hashtags for your brand ambassadors to use so you can easily see when and how often they’re posting about your company.

When it comes to sales and traffic, there are two really helpful ways to measure your KPIs: customized links, and unique discount codes.

A customized link uses UTM to track specifically where your traffic is coming from. So you can give each ambassador their own link to your website, and then use Google Analytics to see whose links are generating the most hits.

Unique discount codes work similarly, but reflect specific revenue generated by each ambassador. You give each ambassador their own unique discount codes to share with their followers and peers.

When a purchase is made with that discount code, you can measure exactly how much in sales was created by the work of that specific ambassador.

Step 4: Review and Adjust

When first starting an ambassador program, stay flexible. Measure your KPIs often, and plan to review the numbers in 3 to 6 months to see if you need different KPIs or maybe even different goals.

Once your program is rolling with the kind of engagement from student ambassadors that you’re looking for, you should remember to be patient. It may take a while to see real impacts of your brand ambassador program, even if the KPIs are positive.

Along the way, you’ll want to implement a strategy to improve the performance of your ambassadors. Some ways to improve brand ambassador performance include:

Training

Communication

  • Provide online networks on platforms like Slack, Facebook, or even an email chain where your ambassadors can communicate with each other and with you to share tips, report KPI data, and show off successes that are sure to inspire the team.

Assign Roles Wisely

  • Your extroverted ambassadors should be the ones giving presentations, posting videos, and hosting events.
  • The less talkative of your team might be better at tweeting, handing out fliers, or working behind the scenes to organize events and even collect KPI data.

Gather Feedback

  • Use surveys to find out from your ambassadors what’s working for them and what isn’t.
  • You can also use them to get feedback on your product and to report customer feedback as well.

Incentivize Success

  • Reward the ambassadors who hit specific KPI numbers with rewards like invites to company events, an all-expenses paid trip to your headquarters, swag, and gift cards.

Making the Most of Your College Student Brand Ambassadors

A successful campus brand ambassador program requires specific goals, relevant KPIs, well-trained ambassadors, and a strong strategy.

One of the best things about college student brand ambassadors is that they can advocate for your brand in person on campus. And while any day of the school year is a great time for an ambassador to be repping your brand, there are some times where they can be especially effective.

We’re talking about football games, career fairs, and perhaps most importantly, welcome weekend. Read about how you can use brand ambassadors in on-campus marketing during welcome weekend »


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