Here at Campus Industries we have put a lot of faith in our peer-to-peer marketing model – in fact, we’ve built a whole company around it. But would we really just do this on blind faith? Of course not! There’s a ton of research out there to prove what we already know: student brand ambassadors are an invaluable and irreplaceable resource.
As a company, it can be tricky to get your message across to university students. Everyone is trying to get their attention and with good reason since gaining students’ loyalty while they’re at university can lead to lifelong loyalty to your brand. But the student market can be a tough one to crack, and above-the-line marketing is often fairly ineffective. So, how are you supposed to get your product in front of this audience? The answer: student brand ambassadors.
Research shows that 92% of consumers trust referrals from people they know. When it comes to students specifically, 90% regularly find out about their favourite brands through friends and coursemates – word of mouth is crucial, and they’re getting their recommendations almost exclusively from each other. This is what the peer-to-peer marketing model is all about – students helping you to market to students. It makes total sense; they have access to the same media, places, and social groups because (and this is the best bit) the brand ambassadors are part of the same demographic as the target audience!
Brand ambassadors can go all those places where marketing companies can’t usually reach – or at least not without paying a hefty fee. Since they’re students themselves, brand ambassadors have access to lectures and classrooms, and so can get in front of a large student audience easily, and one that your company would never be able to reach without brand ambassadors’ help. Society and social events are suddenly also accessible, where your product can be pitched directly to your target audience in a natural and organic manner. Being part of the university also means that brand ambassadors can access email directories that most marketing companies would pay a fortune for, and send out information to hard-to-crack groups on campus.
Apart from being able to reach audiences that would otherwise be difficult to get in front of, brand ambassadors are fantastic as a source of information when you’re trying to market to students. Who knows better what students want than students themselves? By recruiting students to your team, you can gain from their unique insight and learn from them about your target audience.
We’re currently in the age of social media, and students make up a huge proportion of users. An impressive 96% of UK students actively use social media, so it’s not a platform that should be ignored or taken lightly. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to get the tone of voice right in the abbreviated messages of social media, especially when you’re speaking to a demographic who is fluent in emojis! This is where brand ambassadors can really shine, as they can help you talk the talk and keep you informed and up to date on social media.
So, to come back to the original question: yes, brand ambassadors are definitely one of the best tools to use when marketing to students. As members of your target audience they can give you reliable and unique insights, and help you really get into the mind of the people to whom you want to sell. Getting student brand ambassadors onto your team means getting to know your audience in a new way and gaining access to places that you wouldn’t have been able to go otherwise. Sounds ideal!
If you’re interested in getting brand ambassadors onto your student marketing campaign, get in touch now.