How to Recruit for an Ambassador Program: 3 Steps to Know
When looking to expand your nonprofit’s reach, consider the impactful role your supporters play in your awareness efforts. Your supporters are passionate about your cause and can broaden the reach of your mission. Leveraging them through an ambassador program is a surefire way to engage donors and creatively widen your organization’s network.
Ambassador programs allow donors to champion your mission by fundraising before, during, and even after your signature fundraiser. These programs create a fundraising system with built-in social and professional networks, which enables your organization to engage and attract new donors and activists to your cause.
We will cover a step-by-step guide your organization can follow to recruit these ambassadors effectively. From brainstorming, marketing, and recruitment, your nonprofit will have your ambassador program up and running in no time! Here are the steps we will cover:
- Step 1: Design parameters for your program
- Step 2: Promote your ambassador program
- Step 3: Interview and select your ambassadors
Step 1: Design Parameters for Your Program
Before actively recruiting your ambassadors, determine precisely what your organization would want the role to look like. Making sure you have a clear idea of what you want from this ambassador program will help you recruit the correct individuals and see the greatest success towards your nonprofit’s goals.
When creating parameters, identify clear goals for the program. Typically, ambassador programs address one or more of the following categories:
- Raising awareness for your cause
- Generating interest for an upcoming event
- Promoting your cause to increase donation potential
After you identify the program’s goal, your organization can address the required length for the ambassador program. This will give your potential ambassadors a better understanding of the time commitment to your cause. From just an event commitment to a couple of months of promotion, ambassador programs can be as short or long as needed to meet your organization’s goals.
Finally, with the digital nature of current society, your organization must consider whether you need your ambassadors to join virtually, in a hybrid format, or person. With this in mind, nonprofits can better target their ambassador program’s needs to the individuals willing and able to meet them.
With the parameters set, your organization is ready to start promoting and marketing your ambassador program!
Step 2: Promote Your Ambassador Program
With a better understanding of your ambassador program’s criteria, it’s time to start sharing it with your supporters. Include the program requirements and criteria in your promotional material to help encourage only qualified candidates to apply.
To get your ambassador program in front of your supporters, consider the following marketing strategies to help in your outreach efforts:
- Multichannel promotion: Using multiple outlets to make your supporters aware of your ambassador program will allow for greater promotional reach. Channels could include social media outlets, your website, text messaging, or email.
- Target active supporters: Active supporters are highly engaged with your cause. Reaching out to them directly will increase their chances of applying.
- Focus on the benefits: Make your program stand out by highlighting the benefits of participating – for both your ambassador and your cause!
With a diverse promotional strategy, your nonprofit is sure to find the most qualified ambassadors to apply for your program. Remember that you might need to use more than one marketing strategy to reach the most and best applicants for your ambassador program.
Step 3: Interview and Select Your Ambassadors
Now that your supporters have applied, it is time to interview and select the most qualified applicants.
When interviewing each candidate, make sure you have a standard process and selection criteria to simplify your choice of ambassadors. Here are some recommended tips to follow during your interview process:
- Look for passionate candidates: Ambassadors should be individuals who are highly engaged and enthusiastic about your cause. For example, an individual who is highly involved in your last four peer-to-peer fundraisers would be a great ambassador for your mission.
- Ask experience and interest-focused questions: Make sure that a candidate has relevant experience and personal interests that best align with your organization. Asking these questions will demonstrate how they might represent your cause.
- Present position-based information: Ensure every candidate is shown the expectations for the role. You want to ensure they make an informed decision when agreeing to be your nonprofit’s ambassador.
With these tips and a structured interview process, your nonprofit is armed with the tools you need to find the best ambassadors for your organization. When you have finalized your ambassadors, be sure to inform those who have been selected and provide reasoning to those who have not.
Your nonprofit is now ready to leverage the networks and connections of your newly formed ambassador program!
An ambassador program is a great way to increase your fundraising traction and spread your mission. Finding the best ambassadors to represent your brand can maximize your organization’s impact on donors.
Leveraging these three easy steps is a simple way to start your recruitment process and create the most impactful ambassador program for your organization.
Kelly Velasquez-Hague is the Director of Content Marketing for OneCause.
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