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The Power of Social Media Ambassadors: How to Identify, Incentivize and Create an Ambassador Program
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The Power of Social Media Ambassadors: How to Identify, Incentivize and Create an Ambassador Program


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Presentation I gave to the Seattle Chamber of Commerce on Nov. 15, 2012, which reviews how to identify, incentivize and create an ambassador program.

Presentation I gave to the Seattle Chamber of Commerce on Nov. 15, 2012, which reviews how to identify, incentivize and create an ambassador program.

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  • 1. Shelly MilamNovember 15, 2012
  • 2. WHAT YOU’LL LEARN TODAY1.  The need and value of creating content that goes beyond standard marketing materials2.  Ways to: a)  Identify b)  Activate, and c)  Engage community members to share your company’s message3.  How to plan for and run an ambassador program4.  How to effectively measure the program and scale participation
  • 3. WHAT IS A BRAND AMBASSADOR?§  “A person or customer who talks favorably about a brand or product, and then passes on positive word-of-mouth messages about the brand to other people” - webopedia§  “A highly-satisfied customer who recommends their favorite brands and products without being paid to do so” - Zuberance§  “A person who not only buys from the brand but will act to protect, promote and help it” - Forrester Research
  • 4. WHAT DO THEY LOOK LIKE? §  Highly active on brand’s social media channels §  Have a large social footprint across multiple platforms §  Proactively share their positive experiences and offer feedback to the brand §  Recommends both consumer and B2B productsSource: Zuberance
  • 5. WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF BRAND AMBASSADORS? §  1 = 75 §  2.3x more likes and 1.8x more comments §  10x ROI in media and sales §  75% more likely to share great experiences §  70% seen as good source of info §  61% of people will act on a recommendationSources: Zuberance, Napkin Labs, Bzzagent
  • 6. 7 STEPS FOR BUILDING AN AMBASSADOR PROGRAM 1.  Build an active and engaged community 2.  Identify your top influencers 3.  Identify your internal advocates 4.  Identify your external advocates 5.  Launch pilot program to test and refine method 6.  Track and measure 7.  Scale program
  • 7. GETTING STARTED1.  Listen and find where your community is already active2.  Select/prioritize your social media channels3.  Develop a content strategy for each channel4.  Engage and interact with your community5.  Strengthen relationships with influencers
  • 8. LISTEN AND PRIORITIZE YOUR EFFORTS§  Use free or paid tools to find conversations that are key to your business§  Identify where these conversations are happening, on which social channels and who is participating§  Prioritize 1-2 social media channels to kick off your program
  • 9. EXAMPLE SOCIAL MEDIA CHANNEL STRATEGY Blogs ForumsPurpose Influence Advocacy Influence Influence + Influence Advocacy Official voice of Primary social Hyper targeted Advocacy Establish thought Primary source Juniper venue for influencer Secondary leadership for most loyal Networks technical engagement destination technical audiences serving supporters. content to all domainsStrategy Direct Premium Leverage skills Connect Expand blogging Grow existing engagement access model to and expertise content presence. community; with top build advocacy data for creation to Improve platform, scale exclusive influencers with technical influence social strategy. dramatically content model; audiences mapping and Optimize increase blogs & connect to targeted groups presence. bloggers Facebook involvement. advocacyTarget Influencers, Technical users, Influencers, All CXO, advocates, Advocates,Audience media/analysts, certification, advocates, influencers influencers customers, customers, current/future partners developers employees
  • 10. DEVELOP A CONTENT STRATEGY§  Tone§  Personality§  Frequency§  Type of content§  Channel norms§  Community behavior
  • 11. EXAMPLE CONTENT STRATEGY Drive Brand Awareness and Preference through Advocacy FosterBuild Affiliation & Extend Thought Garner Product Increase Sales Community Engagement Leadership Insight Leads Content ‘Stat of the Week’ Community Lab ‘Article of the Ambassador Product Photos Week’ Expert Calls presentations Geek Humor Technical demo Webinar Submit a Tip Blog Posts videos Promotion Graphics Friday Developer ‘Engineer of the Product 101 Twitter Chats Release Note Week’ Video Chat Feedback Videos Certification Questions Social Media Platforms: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, JNET, Slideshare, YouTube Types of Content: Video, graphics, blog posts, status updates, User Generated Content
  • 14. MEASURE YOUR ACTIVITIESMEASUREMENT PROCESS EXAMPLE METRICS§  Determine key objectives §  Share of voice vs.§  Select your metrics competitors§  Create quarterly goals §  Community engagement§  Share monthly report §  Community growth with stakeholders to §  Tonality track progress §  Social referrals to website or campaign
  • 15. MEASURING COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT9.0%8.0%7.0%6.0%5.0%4.0%3.0%2.0%1.0%0.0% Data for past 7 days, pulled 9/5/12Facebook Engagement Rate = Community size (Fans) Engaged fans (People Talking About Us)
  • 16. WHAT IS AN INFLUENCER?An influencer is a person with anaudience who trusts their opinionsand recommendations.Examples: •  Media/bloggers •  Analysts •  Customers •  Partners Source: Forrester Research Peer Influencer Pyramid
  • 17. CONSIDERATIONS WHEN SELECTING INFLUENCERS §  They are talking about your key topics §  They have a large audience and multiple social media channels §  Their content is being shared by their audience §  They are open to being influenced themselves
  • 18. BUILD AN INFLUENCER PROGRAM INFLUENCER IDENTIFICATION Build a list of top influencers for each topic area ENGAGEMENT PROGRAM Create engagement activities for each influencer and assign influencers to active employees MEASURE Track engagements to measure impact and report back to executive team
  • 19. FINDING YOUR INTERNAL ADVOCATESDefine your criteria:§  Have a passion for learning about social media§  Already slightly active§  Desire to build their personal brand
  • 20. ENCOURAGE ACTION§  Provide peer-to-peer training and resources§  Deliver ongoing cadence of best practices and examples of what works§  Determine topic areas of focus for each participant§  Select 2-3 influencers for each participant to focus on§  Flag new and relevant engagement opportunities and provide regular content suggestions§  Promote the 5-10-30 plan
  • 21. THE 5, 10, 30 PLAN5 MINUTES 10 MINUTES 30 MINUTES§  ReTweet or reply to top §  Grow your social equity and §  Scan your RSS feed for influencers on Twitter find new people to follow interesting blogs. Leave a using Twitter search question/comment beneath§  Respond to comments, timely and relevant posts. @replies and messages §  Scan your RSS feed for interesting articles and select §  Comment within LinkedIn§  Use Twitter search to find new relevant ones to share on groups. people to follow multiple social media sites §  Engage on company’s§  Scan your RSS feed for §  Update your status on Facebook Page at various interesting articles, read them LinkedIn at different times times throughout the day. and share with your followers throughout the day §  Scan your network looking for§  Update your status on §  Engage on company’s interesting mentions of LinkedIn Facebook page company, its products, and your handle. §  Jot down ideas for a blog post §  Draft a blog post and promote it via your social sites.
  • 22. INCENTIVIZE AND REWARD GOOD BEHAVIOR§  Opportunity to present at or attend social media conferences to enhance skills§  Invite to company events to act as social evangelists§  Opportunity to participate in “Lunch and Learn” series§  Be a featured blogger on company blog§  Host or be the special guest for a company sponsored tweet up
  • 23. FINDING YOUR EXTERNAL ADVOCATES§  Active on your social media channels (commenting often, proactively, and with a positive tone)§  Knowledgeable about the products§  Already publicly advocating your products on social networks§  Creating sophisticated content on your behalf (videos, webinars, multimedia, etc.)§  Hosting and attending offline events§  Defending your brand in competitive attacks§  Answering user questions in your forums
  • 24. JUNIPER’S AMBASSADOR TEAM Owner at Independent Technology Group and Juniper Networks Certified Instructor Kevin Barker JNCIS-ENT, SEC, FWV, SSL JNCIA-ER, EX, IDP, UAC, WX Steve Puluka Senior Network Administrator at Liberty Dialysis. JNCIA-ER, JNCIA-EX, JNCIS-FWV, JNCIS-SSL, JNCIS-SEC Senior Network Engineer at the University of Reno Nevada. Keith Rinaldo JNCIS-SEC, JNCIA-EX, JNICA-ER Principal Network Engineer – London Stock Exchange at Verizon Business. Perry Young JNCIP-ENT, JNCIP-SEC, JNCIP-SP JAD-DC, JAD-BD, JAD-CD, JNCIA-JUNOS Martin Brown Access Control Product Specialist at UTC Fire and Security. JNCIA-Junos, JNCIS-ENT James Hartig Software Engineer at Grooveshark Colin Hostert CIO at Grooveshark
  • 25. 6 STEPS FOR BUILDING AN AMBASSADORPROGRAM1.  Define your objectives and strategy2.  Determine your business outcomes3.  Get stakeholder agreement on success metrics4.  Articulate the benefit for ambassadors to join the program5.  Invite ambassadors to join6.  Launch and manage program
  • 26. DEFINE YOUR OBJECTIVE AND STRATEGY Convert the loyalty of Juniper’s community of online advocates into tangible value and business outcomes. 1 2 3Reward a core group Encourage ambassadors Work with ambassadorof engaged and to be public evangelists community to identify andknowledgeable advocates on behalf of Juniper and recruit new ambassadorfrom Juniper’s community tap into their social memberswith increased access to networks to amplifyinternal company voices Juniper’s key initiativesand resources
  • 27. DETERMINE YOUR BUSINESS OUTCOMES CO-CREATION AMPLIFICATION INSIGHTS OF CONTENT§  Promote company §  Product feedback §  Blog posts content and announcements §  Participation in product §  User generated images on social channels development and tutorials expands Juniper content vault§  Defend in §  Focus groups competitive attacks §  Technical expertise on §  Beta testing forums§  Public recommendations and §  Testimonials endorsement and videos§  Refer sales leads §  Eases customer support and tech support§  Leverage their networks burden by rewarding for advocacy efforts community
  • 28. GET STAKEHOLDER AGREEMENT ON WHAT SUCCESS LOOKS LIKE1 INCREASE SHARE OF VOICE IN KEY TOPIC AREAS •  Amplification of company’s content and messaging •  Encourage creation of more user-generated content2 BRAND IS REPRESENTED MORE AUTHENTICALLY •  Active group of community members involved in organic conversation about products •  Proactive evangelism in the event of a crisis or competitive strike
  • 29. ARTICULATE BENEFITS OF JOINING PROGRAM§  Early access to announcements and executive team§  Exclusive summit at company headquarters§  Roundtable session with product team members§  Quarterly virtual roundtables with product teams§  Select Beta Programs§  Locally hosted events and technical trainings§  Moderation privileges in forum(s) of expertise§  Access to private Ambassador-only forum§  Guest presenter at user conference§  Ego boost, public recognition, resume builder
  • 30. INVITE YOUR AMBASSADORS TO JOIN§  Create a list of potential ambassadors for a pilot program§  Send formal email invitation§  Host a “welcome call” to kick-off the program and answer questions§  Create ambassador database with contact info and social footprint§  Create an email alias and private forum/group for information sharing§  Develop program calendar with events/content to share with ambassador group
  • 31. LAUNCH AND MANAGE THE PROGRAMS Influencers / Social Community Ambassadors Orchestrators (you!) Monitor Engage Contribute Internal Advocates
  • 33. EXAMPLE KPIS§ Content creation (Original + Shared)§ Reach (Content)§ Activation Rate (Percentage) § Influence score § Virality of their content§ Tracking of Share of Voice in Juniper Conversations§ Participation in J-Net forums
  • 34. RECAP1.  Build an active and engaged community2.  Identify your top influencers3.  Identify your internal advocates4.  Identify your external advocates5.  Launch pilot program to test and refine method6.  Track and measure7.  Scale program
  • 35. Twitter: @shellynoel / @JuniperNetworksLinkedIn: