Brand Ambassadors Decry Unfair Treatment, Poor Welfare Package
Brand Promoters under the aegis of the Brand Ambassador Association of Nigeria (B.A.A.N) have decried the level of unfair treatment against their members, and poor welfare packages from agencies and supervisors representing brands.
Brand Ambassadors, specifically called brand promoters are those personnel actively involved in field activations for brands like market storms, street activations, sales promotion and other related projects. Most times they closely work with experiential marketing agencies and in some case with the marketing/ sales unit of a manufacturing company.
In a statement signed by the association and sent to Brand Communicator, the association alleged that the wages of Brand Ambassadors are rarely paid on time, sometimes slashed at will, and not paid at all most times. Most times they are paid as low as N2000 or N2500 per day and the supervisors (representatives of experiential agencies) most times harass and sexually exploit their members. The association also accused most experiential of failing to take any action when sexual harassments are reported.
“We all know that Brand Ambassadors are the very face of every brand, product, and service to meet its target audience. Each promoter should be treated as important as the brand. But sadly, we’re unfairly treated otherwise, we’re paid crumbs, threatened, sexually exploited and expected to be grateful for whatever ill-treatments thrown at us by the agency and supervisors alike.
“As an extremely concerned group, we the Brand Ambassadors have come together to put an immediate end to the terrible experience we get from most agencies in the brand activation world.”
On sexually harassing of its members, it said “It is a general knowledge that most supervisors harass Brand Ambassador sexually to offer them jobs or to renew ongoing ones.”
It, therefore, appealed that its members are fairly treated, putting forward some recommendations which include: “Henceforth, all Ambassadors are advised to not accept jobs less than N3500 per day. We will take up activations that delay in payment against what is stipulated in the contract which is expected not to exceed the 14 days after the project as we are aware that companies/ brands make 50-70% payment at the commencement of the project. It’s best if there’s an agreement form signed between the promoters and the agency, stating the exact time it’d take to pay these promoters before they even begin the activation or project.”
Also, the association demanded that, “When calling for casting, transportation allowances or compensation should be made available. Any complaints of sexual harassment with proof will be mailed to the agency head and if no action is taken after a week, the relevant authority or brand involved would be contacted.
“As independent contractors, a Brand Ambassador’s agreement should contain data and transportation allowance; compensation should also be made for early termination of contract terms. All we solemnly ask is that you accord us the respect and necessary consideration as we do our jobs diligently.”
The issue of Brand Ambassadorship has always been on the front burner for Experiential Marketers Association of Nigeria (EXMAN). It recently relaunched its Certified Brand Ambassadors Program (ECBAP). The programme is intended to be the foundation of a more responsible and structured vocational development programme as a way of combating youth unemployment, while also instilling better behaviour, discipline and professionalism within the experiential marketing industry which contributes over N30b annually.