With the onset of social media and modern marketing, numerous brands are looking for ways to relate more directly to their customer base. However, that can be hard when the tools that you’re using were made for individuals to connect, and you’re a large, multi-headed corporation.
That’s much of the reason that small businesses and startups do the best through guerilla marketing and social media. However, there are big corporations that make it work for them as well. How? For the most part, it’s all about having a centralized voice. Sometimes, that means making branding so strong that you create a cohesive identity out of a simple logo. However, a clever idea is to try out a spokesperson.
People are programmed and primed to respond to human interaction. We see faces in random patterns, we’re able to recognize important facial expressions from hundreds of feet away, and we focus our attention on other people more than any other thing. It works the same way with marketing, and that’s exactly why a spokesperson can help you stand out.
What Is a Spokesperson?
A spokesperson is the personal embodiment of the most important aspects of your business. This character provides a relatable, likeable face that becomes a connection point between you and your customers. Whether this person is someone that you actually have an actor represent in advertisements, or someone that your content creators and marketers channel whenever they’re doing front-facing communication, it’s an important part of all of your marketing efforts. A spokesperson can also do a great job at quickly communicating those aspects of your business that make you unique and noticeable in a large market.
What Makes Someone Likeable?
Now we come to the really difficult part: how do you create and pick someone that will be effective and likeable? Well, let’s look at some of the most successful spokespeople in major corporations’ marketing campaigns.
One major spokesperson is Apple’s “I’m a Mac” persona. Remember that campaign? You can read more about it here. As you browse the videos, you can see that there are a few things that Apple did here that are amazingly effective.
- Everyman: Your spokesperson doesn’t have to be (and probably shouldn’t be) someone that’s hard to relate to. If they are, they quickly alienate people. Unless you’re doing a comical caricature, your primary goal should be trust.
- Knowledgeable about the important things: While you do want a relatable, likeable persona, the truth is that you want to communicate professionalism and capability at the same time. So never reduce your spokesperson to a bumbling idiot.
- Multi-faceted: Here’s one thing that many people forget when planning out their spokesperson. While you want a simple, straightforward person, you also need to adapt to a lot of different situations. Whether that’s a customer concern, a partnership, a charitable campaign, or awareness about a serious topic, you can’t always just have a cartoon character heading things up. You want someone who strikes the right balance of savvy and down-to-earth.
- Know the audience: As we mentioned above, the spokesperson really needs to speak to your customer base. This doesn’t mean that they need to talk to everyone in the world! Remember that that most successful brands today are the ones that corner their own niche. So when you’re developing this dynamic, make sure that you realize who your audience is and how they’re going to effectively relate to the spokesperson.
How They Link to Your Business
Alright, once you have a pretty good idea of who your spokesperson is, how do you proceed in getting the most out of this device?
Well, it starts internally. Your employees should always have a good idea of who they’re working for. They should know what the outer face of the business is, and it shouldn’t ever have discord with the internal workings. This branding technique can be as helpful for inter-office communications and creativity as it is for marketing. Everyone at your business plays the “spokesperson” now and then, whether that’s being on the phone as customer service, or simply talking with someone about what they do at a cocktail party.