Recruiting and selecting campus reps can be tricky business. It doesn’t matter how much strategy and thought went into the campaign—if you select the wrong campus reps, it can be detrimental. With different brands looking for different qualities in campus reps, it’s important to do your research. Here are the five qualities to look for in every campus rep.

1. Brand Fitcampus rep

To effectively represent a brand, it is vital that the student fits the brand. Every brand has its own personality—some are bubbly, pink, and fun, while others are green, wholesome, and all-natural. A campus rep for the former brand should come across as lively, feminine, and confident, while a campus rep for the latter brand should come across as environmentally conscious, inclusive, and genuine. In addition, potential campus reps should have interests and career goals that align with the brand. A student who is studying dermatology would be a great fit to represent a skin care line, while a student athlete would be great fit to represent an athletic wear brand. Finding a campus rep who embodies the brand doesn’t just lead to his or her individual success, it ensures the success of the entire program.

2. On-Campus Involvement

Strong campus reps are deeply involved on campus. Typically, campus reps are not freshmen; most first-year students haven’t yet developed a large enough network or the confidence needed to influence their peers. Upperclassmen tend to be more involved and have had the opportunity to take on leadership roles within their respective organizations.

Involvement in Greek life, in particular, is a major benefit. A sorority or fraternity chapter at a large school can have up to 400 active members, making it easy for members of these organizations to influence fellow members. In addition to Greek life, involvement in other on-campus clubs is very important. The kind of clubs that a student is involved in typically reflect their interests, which can help determine whether a candidate will be a good fit for a particular brand. Whether these clubs are academic, philanthropic, or social, these student groups make up a large and direct network that campus reps are able to influence.

3. Event Planning Experience

Event execution is essential to bringing a brand to life. Campus reps typically host 3-7 events per year to (re)introduce the brand, encourage student engagement, and create memorable moments with peers. For these events to be successful, having the proper experience is a must.

Campus reps must strategically determine where and when to host their events. Events executed in high-traffic foot areas typically perform better, as more students are able to directly interact with the brand and indirectly gain awareness. Prior event planning experience is particularly beneficial to informing these decisions. Students typically gain event planning experience from their involvement in on-campus organizations or through jobs and internships. Campus reps that not only have event planning experience but love the event planning process tend to execute their events at a higher level.

4. Digital Footprint

A great campus rep has a strong presence on campus and online—they’re micro influencers. Through their social networks, they are able to successfully reach and influence hundreds, and sometimes thousands, of their peers at once. This influence is created through an engaged social media following, a strategic and unique posting style, and an informed knowledge of the overall digital landscape gleaned from relevant internships and job experience. High-quality, brand-related posts often motivate and inspire like-minded students to further engage with the brand, increasing perception and purchase consideration for years to come.

5. Interview Skills

An interview further ensures that a potential campus rep is the correct fit for the brand. Interviews help you further understand the individual’s personality, evaluate how their experiences relate to the responsibilities of the position, and gauge their overall excitement towards the brand. The recruitment process is often lengthy, as finding the perfect candidates to meet the needs of both the campaign and the brand takes time. However, the benefits of hiring the correct candidates are exponential—a true influencer creates additional influencers, which can in turn take your brand’s awareness and relevance within the Millennial and Gen-Z market to the next level.

Many campus reps will go above and beyond the responsibilities of the position to ensure that the brand resonates with their peer networks. You’ll be able to easily spot this campus rep because of their outgoing spirit, expressed dedication to the campaign, and how well their aesthetic meshes with the brand. These reps can in fact be so on-brand and add so much value that they move into full-time positions with the brand following the completion of the campaign.

WANT MORE? CHECK OUT THESE BLOGS

HOW CAN YMC HELP?

Want to recruit campus reps that are the perfect fit for your brand? Finding the right partner is key to your success. Here at YMC, we’ve been helping brands connect with 15- to 29-year-old consumers for two decades—we’d be happy to share our wealth of knowledge with you. Contact us today!

Brands interested in reaching Millennials and Gen-Zs shouldn’t rely on the trappings of traditional marketing. With this demographic, peer-to-peer is king. Simply put, peer-driven, word-of-mouth interactions have become the most effective method of moving the needle for brands on college campuses and online. What’s the best way to do this? Campus rep programs.

By recruiting a team of micro influencers who are genuinely passionate about your brand and training them to be campus reps, you’ll have legions of true believers who are ready to talk to their friends about your brand on campus. These campus rep programs pay for themselves by reaching new consumers, driving awareness, and increasing sales. In addition, brands are consistently seeing added ROI through an uptick in followers and engagement on their owned social channels, as well as spikes in user-generated content.

Below are three reasons why campus rep programs may be the best use of your marketing budget.

1. Reach New Consumers

Despite the small number of campus reps needed to maintain a presence on campus, their diligent work pays off in a big way. Through on-campus events during the school year, campus rep teams are able to directly interact with approximately 15% of the student population, while exposing 20-30% of the student population to the brand’s messaging. To put that in perspective, let’s take your average state school with about 30,000 undergraduate students. Campus rep teams usually interact with—and we’re talking face-to-face communication—about 4,500 students, while exposing over 7,500 students to the brand.

Those aren’t just numbers. Those are college students who are open to new products and services and are willing to engage. The key is having your brand introduced by an authentic, trusted source—their peer. By choosing your campus reps wisely, well-connected, passionate college students will be representing your brand, allowing you to tap into their vast networks.

Soap & Glory is a great example. After years of success building itself into a dominant beauty and personal care brand in the UK, Soap & Glory wanted to establish a strong presence in the US. Their team of “fearlessly female” campus reps increased brand awareness, encouraged product trial, and supported major national retailers Walgreens, Target, and Ulta. Their presence on campus was so impactful that they became local celebrities, with students spotting them on campus and enthusiastically identifying them as “the Soap & Glory girls.” Their celebrity status consistently secured them lines of 50+ students at each event.

Soap and Glory campus rep wearing branded jacket

2. Drive Awareness

In addition to exposing new consumers to your brand through on-campus events, activations allow students to interact with your brand in unexpected ways, building familiarity and trust. Once this relationship has been established, students are more willing to allow you access to their personal information (name, email, school year, etc.), which leads to higher open and click-through rates on your digital marketing efforts.

Students who have opted-in to a brand’s digital and social channels not only become customers, but also brand advocates, sharing what they love on their personal social channels and through word-of-mouth. This snowball effect creates exponential reach, which often extends beyond the borders of one campus as students are connected to family members, high school friends (who are now spread out nationally), and new friends made through internships, jobs, volunteerism, and study abroad programs.

3. Leverage Program-Generated Content

In a typical campus rep program, campus reps are happily sharing branded messaging on their social channels, often competing with each other to post the best shot. These campus reps are micro influencers on their respective campus, having amassed large followings and influence. Combine their social media activity with content created by students during brand events, and the brand’s reach skyrockets.  

campus reps for Express with branded materials

 

The #ExpressU campus rep program is a great example. A network of hand-selected influential campus reps generated buzz around EXPRESS by executing on-campus events and creating original and unique social content. With events ranging from free yoga classes and juice bars to pool parties, the brand has enjoyed impressive results:

  • 30M+ total program impressions generated across all physical, digital, and social channels with zero paid media
  • 12.3K+ social content pieces created by campus reps utilizing #ExpressU
  • 60+ pieces of program-generated social content leveraged on EXPRESS-owned channels, which received higher engagement than non-collegiate content
  • Campus reps contributed multiple long-form articles to the brand’s blog
  • EXPRESS utilized campus rep content to launch Instagram Stories, which generated over 27,000 views and higher engagement than non-collegiate stories

Additionally, because campus reps are students, they are able to reserve space in the most coveted and high-traffic interaction points on and around campus. Whether your brand belongs in the student rec center, quad, cafeteria, dorms, Greek houses, or on the intramural fields, campus reps are able to cultivate authentic conversations and interactions in areas of campus that are relevant to their lifestyles, allowing students to naturally experience your brand.

When you couple the authentic interactions during on-campus events with the relevant social media content created by a program, you get authentic experiences that changes a brand’s perception from “seems cool” to “can’t imagine life without it.”

WANT MORE? CHECK OUT THESE BLOGS

HOW CAN YMC HELP?

Looking to launch a campus rep program for your brand? Finding the right partner is key to your success (and ROI). Here at YMC, we’ve been helping brands connect with 15- to 29-year-old consumers for two decades—we’d be happy to share our wealth of knowledge with you. Contact us today!

Being a student brand ambassador isn’t always a simple task—especially when you’re going to class, studying for midterms, working a part time job, and trying to see your friends! Although it seems challenging, being a brand ambassador can be an incredibly rewarding experience that helps you develop the skills needed to enter the workforce. Here are six skills you’ll master:

1. Communicating remotely

Brands hire student brand ambassadors from all across the country, and because of this, you typically communicate with your supervisor via phone, text, email, and social media. A lot can be lost in translation when you’re unable to see someone face-to-face. As a result, you’ll be challenged to learn how to refine your remote communication skills, which is becoming an increasingly more important aspect of work in our digital age.

2. Working within teams

You don’t work in a vacuum, and in most careers, you never will. Typically, student brand ambassadors work in groups of two to four. The success of the program on your campus depends on your ability to collaborate effectively within your team. Learning how to work with others is a vital skill that you’ll develop and perfect over time. Because of this, the data shows us that student brand ambassadors have a leg up on the competition as they enter the workforce. After all, the key to being a successful student brand ambassador is clear and continuous teamwork.

3. Being responsible and deadline-focused

Being a student brand ambassador can be a really fun and rewarding opportunity, but at the end of the day, it is a job. The program’s completion and success is on you and your team. Brands invest a lot of time and money into selecting, training, and trusting student brand ambassadors to complete tactics when they themselves cannot be present. If an event doesn’t happen, the opportunity is lost, money is wasted, and the brand cannot meet their goals. As previously mentioned, your supervisor is typically not in your same city, so the responsibility is in your hands. Learning how to work on your own schedule and still meet deadlines is a critical skill.

4. Representing a brand or company

As a student brand ambassador, you become the face of your brand on-campus. Beyond having to know everything about their service and/or product offerings, you’ll be communicating their brand messaging everyday. What’s their story? What makes them unique? And why should students care? You’ll learn how to share key messages through both verbal and visual techniques—from talking about products and services, and demonstrating their value, to looking the part through what you wear and how you present yourself. For example, if you’re representing Apple but using a PC, people won’t believe that you’re a true advocate for the brand—they’ll assume you’re just doing it to get paid. Learning that sometimes it not what you say, but how you present it, is a valuable lesson.

profiles of student brand ambassadors

 5. Telling a brand’s story on social media

As a Millennial, you might already think you know everything there is to know about social media. You have 10,000 Facebook friends, 1,500 Instagram followers, 500 friends on Snapchat, and even 1,000 Twitter followers—that’s awesome! But do you know how to utilize these followers to build a brand? As a student brand ambassador, one of your weekly responsibilities is to create on-brand and engaging content. You’ll develop an understanding of which posts resonate with the followers and which posts fall short. If you do an exemplary job, you may even get featured on the brand’s social media channels! So, how do you shift from telling YOUR story on social media, to telling the unique story and sharing the unique voice of the brand you represent? As a student brand ambassador, you’ll learn what it truly means to use social media to represent a brand and their key messages.

6. Planning an event

Student brand ambassadors complete on-campus tactics. In other words, you’ll be helping plan and execute events. While it may not be your life’s ambition to be an event planner, you’ll learn how to work with vendors (ordering supplies) and negotiate deals (reserving a venue). Lastly, you’ll learn how to “read a room”—making sure event attendees are having a good time and engaging with the brand. This experience is an important one; teaching you how to approach and interact with new and diverse people.

Being a student brand ambassador is an incredible opportunity to gain valuable and applicable work experience, while allowing you the freedom and responsibility to develop your skillsets across multiple fields. Plus, you usually get paid and are given free product! Win-win!

Interested in becoming a student brand ambassador with YMC? We constantly have opportunities arising throughout the school year, to be considered, please create a profile on The Hub and check back often! Also, make sure to follow us on Instagram to see with what’s happening on-campus with our brands.