Q&A with Seed Marketing's Celia Forshew


We sat down with Seed Marketing's Celia Forshew to talk about Seed Marketing's student brand ambassador campaigns, and what it takes to build an effective brand manager campaign.

You're the industry leader in creating really hands-on student brand manager programmes. What are the key things a brand has to do in order to build their own student ambassador campaign? When done right, student brand ambassador campaigns can generate major results for your brand and as is the case with Red Bull or Spotify, become a flagship of your marketing strategy. 

My top tips for setting up your own a programme would be:

  1. Build up a solid understanding of your audience today, not how you remember your time at university
  2. Be authentic, relevant and engaging. Ask yourself, will students care?
  3. Don't just hire ‘students’. We put all our potential ambassadors through extensive rounds of interviews and training. You need the right people for the job and your brand.
  4. Make sure you can fully track the programme. This will mean you get the best from your student team and can showcase your successes back to the business
  5. Ask the experts, we are here for a purpose, to ensure success and make your life easier!
Dancing is very much encouraged at Seed Marketing and Spotify's Student Brand Manager Training Day.

Dancing is very much encouraged at Seed Marketing and Spotify's Student Brand Manager Training Day.

Why do you think student brand manager programmes are so successful?
More than any other demographic, students live in intimate social communities where groups and individuals can be very influential on decisions and lifestyle. Student brand managers have the ability to drive genuine affinity and long term loyalty to your brand by delivering it direct to the heart of student lives. Tinder, Red Bull and Spotify are just a few examples of how much impact these can have.

As a student marketing agency, experiences are a core part of your business. How have your experiential campaigns helped you build a loyal youth following for your clients? We believe in designing experiences that enhance student lives and speak to their passions. This could be at key moments in their university life such as Freshers Week, exam period, in the Alps at Easter or at festivals throughout the summer. Some of our proudest moments this year have included the Spotify Secret Social, the culmination of our 50 University student programme, delivering 250 students from across the UK to a secret location for a night of music and discovery and driving thousands of female student runners to the Nike Women's 10k in London.

How does Seed Marketing engage with their brand managers and make them the best ambassadors for their particular brand? With almost 20,000 influential students and groups in the Seed network, we place great emphasis on finding the best and most relevant students for each role. Once employed, the most important thing is that your brand managers feel connected to the brand, supported and excited about what they are delivering to their peers.

What other youth brands do you admire when it comes to marketing to 16-24s?Red Bull are a massive inspiration for brands marketing to this age group. They recognise the importance of this market and that to engage them, you need to run truly original and exciting grass roots activity that gets them talking and adds value to their lives. Converse is another favourite.

Catch Celia at Youth Marketing Strategy London 2016 next March, where she will be speaking on 'How to Win the Hearts and Minds of Millenials'.

To find out more about Seed Marketing, head over to the Seed Marketing website.

Haven't gotten your tickets for YMS LDN 2016 yet? Head on over to our event page for more information on the biggest youth marketing conference in Europe.