Several years ago, I was a Regional Sales Director for a small company that grew and packaged specialty lettuces and greens.

At the core of the product line was a lovely salad-like green known as “mâche” or lamb’s lettuce.  Mâche is very much a niche item, and the company’s marketing budget was tiny.

The Marketing Director asked us to extend the reach of her limited resources by supporting her efforts as “Brand Ambassadors” in our Regions.  Our army of three Regional Directors was dispersed across the Lower 48, equipped with emerald green attire, a megaphone, pom-poms, batons and a one-man-marching-band assortment of instruments.

Well, I exaggerate a bit, but as Brand Ambassadors, we were well versed and fully trained to provide on-the-spot mâche information – historical trivia, nutritional highlights, recipe ideas – to all we encountered on or off the job.  We were INFORMED, and we carried THE BRAND MESSAGE fully in sync with positioning and strategy.

This trip down Memory Lane has a destination.  It’s this question:

What can Brand Ambassadors mean for your firm’s agency new business efforts?

From surveys we conduct throughout the year, it’s clear that competition amongst agencies is intensifying and will continue to do so.

Our Agency of the Future blog post featuring the Gray Wolf spoke to the dynamics driving growing competition.  It also addressed the importance of articulating and communicating a distinct point-of-difference about your firm.

Gray Wolf

The Brand Ambassador concept is not a new one, but as the Entrepreneur article What Does it Mean to BE a Good Brand Ambassador illustrates, new tools for Brand Ambassadors are constantly emerging and evolving.

Even if available resources for marketing your own agency are comparatively limited, an army of well-informed Brand Ambassadors can further your agency new business efforts.

Does your firm have an elevator speech that differentiates your agency from your competition?

If so, do your employees know it?

Whether it’s half-time at a football party, standing in line boarding a flight home for the holidays, or it’s at the latest marketing technology convention, are your employees equipped to be effective brand ambassadors for your firm, carrying and communicating your unique capabilities into a sea of potential clients?

What’s next, a wolf in lamb’s lettuce clothing?  No.  Sorry.  That would be crazy.

But it would be crazier still to not harness the force of potential Brand Ambassadors right under your roof.

Mark Sneider
Mark is a 30-year veteran of the consumer packaged goods, advertising, and marketing service industry. Mark started his career at DDB Needham in Chicago prior to earning his MBA from the J.L. Kellogg Business School at Northwestern where he majored in Marketing and Economics. Prior to starting RSW/US in 2005, Mark was General Manager for AcuPOLL, a global research consultancy. Sneider worked in Marketing for S.C. Johnson and KAO Brands. Sneider has been invited to speak at numerous Agency events and network conferences domestically and internationally including the 4A’s, Magnet, NAMA, TAAN, and MCAN. Sneider has been featured in prominent industry publications including Adweek, Media Post, e-Marketer, and Forbes. When not working (which often seems like not often), Mark likes to run miles, go to church, and just chill with a hard copy issue of Fast Company.