Experiential marketing is the most engaging type of college marketing most likely to leave an impression; it is key to lay out a well-defined strategy with the experiential element being the focal point.
There is no doubt that if you are putting together a comprehensive college marketing plan with an ample budget, you are looking for ways to add a college street team component so that brand ambassadors can engage students on campus. The engagement can be as simple as handing out a branded sample product (i.e. flash drive, bottle opener keychain, etc.), having a student download an app or just a quick conversation explaining a promotion and the corresponding ‘call to action’.
What many companies and marketers tend to over look is a sound strategy leading up to the experiential/brand ambassador portion of the campaign. I came across an interesting article posted on imediaconnection.com by Jennifer Floren that lays out very clear some good strategy points to consider as you plan to incorporate a college street team experiential initiative.
Generate Buzz: Create an online platform or Facebook page that can be used to generate interest and awareness online. An online presence can also facilitate user-generated content type contests which work well with the college demographic. It is also essential to have other collateral in the form of campus posters, dorm door hangers and other print media for branding purposes.
Presentation: Present the brand and the promotion in an informative way that provides a certain perceived value to the student, in other words, “how will this product or promotion make my life better?”
Events & Locations: Bring your brand to life on campus and set up a college marketing plan to allow students to engage across multiple platforms. Also, consider the venue to which you will introduce your brand to students such as live events on-campus (i.e concert, sporting event, ect.) depending on the budget in play.
Value: Present your brand/product/message in an environment where the use and benefits can be clearly seen as to set you apart from your competitors and why your company should be given the nod over another. This is why having a network of college brand ambassador, advocating and educating students on the nuances of your product. Brand ambassadors are key and worth every cent in terms of ZERO ad dollars wasted.
College brand ambassadors are important part of any experiential element of a college marketing campaign but rather than just jumping into it, evaluate your strategy points to ensure that it is pulling in the same direction as the rest of your marketing mediums.