I was a professional actor in my mid 20’s the first time I heard the words “brand ambassador".
I was supplementing my acting income by doing some promotional work on the side. My job was to engage people and hold their attention long enough to get across a short message. Sometimes I offered information about a cool new product, sometimes a sample of a new flavour of ice cream. Other times I simply smiled and handed out a free newspaper to people passing by.
The end goal, of course, was to drive sales by making a positive impression that would result in future sales.
We worked in teams. I was often surprised by the people working alongside me. Many seemed uncomfortable maintaining eye contact. Some struggled to speak up loud enough to be heard over a crowd. Others seemed discouraged by being ignored and/or felt rejected. On the other hand, I quite enjoyed these jobs and so I recruited many of my actor-friends into the industry. What struck me was how natural it was for us to connect with people.
As actors, we were highly empathetic people; comfortable making eye contact; knew how to use our voices -- and could both draw and hold people’s attention. We also knew how to handle rejection better than the average human because it was part of our everyday existence. We seemed to have a positive outlook about life and work. And so … Outlook Promotions was born. I decided to start my own shop -- one that would offer work to actors who were in-between engagements (to supplement their income) and that would help brands communicate their messages more effectively by utilizing the right people.
We became the faces of (and breathed life into) brands, products, or companies in a charismatic and memorable way.
We’ve been doing that better than anybody since 2008. We have, of course, evolved and grown. We don’t ONLY look to hire actors any longer. We are far more diverse now than ever before. But we have maintained our very high standard and continue to be highly selective about who we bring on board.
There are a lot of short cuts out there in today’s world. We don’t hire staff sight-unseen from a Facebook post (as many of our competitors do). Rather we go to great lengths to hire the right personalities for each job. We aren’t in the business of providing “bodies”. We provide personality, atmosphere, adaptability and leadership. And I’m proud to say that some of the first people I hired at Outlook are still working with us today, some 11 years later.