Why Sales People Will Become the Face of the Brand. Again.
There was a time when the salesman was the first and final brand representative. Mass media killed that by allowing a brand to have a controlled, consistent message communicated to all potential buyers. With the advent of the internet, the buyer became empowered, and salesman began to be cut out of the equation as the arbiter of brand-name and information.
In the modern social-media driven world of marketing, the opportunity for the salesman to once again become a primary brand rep has returned. Actually, anybody can now be a face of a company, including customers and social media influencers, but the salesperson is uniquely suited for that role, for the same reason that they are a salesperson. Just as they are hired to represent the company in sales calls, sales presentations, and on retail floors; they can also represent the company as a face of their marketing.
OK – so what does it mean? That the salesperson will become the face of the brand?
Picture this. Samsung is an example of a brand that has a respectable retail salesforce (that operates a store-within-a-store at Best Buy locations). I personally have found the individuals who work these sales floors to be helpful, engaging, and non-obtrusive. If that has not been your experience, just substitute my example of Samsung with a brand for which you have had consistently good experiences with salespeople.
Why hasn’t Samsung made these individuals digital brand ambassadors? Why not feature these salespeople on social media with images and videos – content which shows them in the retail environment, and shows customers that they will have a positive experience if they shop there. They could produce short video-specials about members of their sales teams, and they could turn these individuals into key faces of their marketing.
One of the most frightening things to a buyer today is the prospect of going to a store to browse and enjoy, but instead being confronted by an obtrusive salesperson and having to fend them off and hold tightly onto their purse strings. It sounds a bit ludicrous, but it’s the reality of how retail shopping can feel to a buyer. This is one of the reasons people prefer to shop online.
The first step to making salespeople a face of marketing, therefore, is properly training salespeople so that customers no longer have these negative experiences. Stores that have made their physical locations enjoyable have tended to survive the death of retail. But without telling potential buyers about how friendly, enjoyable, and non-confrontational shopping with them is – buyers remain unaware and instead continue to imagine that they will be bombarded with questions from a salesperson who knows less about the products and competing products than the buyer can find out themselves with a brief google search.
So, what can brands do?
What does turning salespeople into the faces of a brands marketing actually look like?
What I am recommending is simple. A company should find some of its best, most camera-friendly salespeople, and encourage them to produce content. The more authentic – the better. No need for large camera crews and lighting – a selfie camera will work just fine. Encourage them to take images and record videos during their day and to post messages and updates.
The key is to be personal and not to post only sales-focused messages. A company can either use hashtags to link the different sales-ambassador’s posts together, feature select posts on their official brand social accounts, or create a separate account with only sales-ambassadors produced content.
The key purpose of all of this is to humanize the sales process and turn buyers into more comfortable shoppers. Any brand that has salespeople, or brand ambassadors (who are a type of salesperson) could benefit from the strategy.
All of what I have described was a major factor in how we designed our app – the BIGVU video teleprompter app. It allows brands to write scripts in their online BIGVU desk and to send them to their brand ambassadors, who open them on their phones in the BIGVU app. The brand ambassadors read the scripts off their phones (the scripts will scroll like a teleprompter as they read) and the app records the video as they read the script. The ambassadors send the footage back to the desk from the phone, and the company has its creative people edit the video within the BIGVU desk using the BIGVU composer. When it is finished – they upload directly to social.
Go to desk.bigvu.tv to register for the free version and check it out. Then let me know you did by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll provide you with some advanced tips.