Awards are more than just a fun night out with your colleagues and peers from the industry – they can also have a hugely positive impact when it comes to promoting your business.
Consider the wine aisles in a large supermarket – when casting your eyes across the vast array of choices, you may well be drawn to those bottles displaying an award logo. This simple sticker clearly states that someone (who presumably knows something about wine) thinks that this is a good choice and worth spending your money on. The plethora of award schemes that exist today are testament to the success of these additional labels.
You may not buy a bottle of wine purely on the merit of the award, but you are more likely to pick it up to find out more – and it is this initial pique of interest that can also work for your business.
Depending on the nature of your organisation, the selection process that your customer goes through will often be a far more considered and complex process than buying a bottle of wine – but the recognition that awards provide is the same. Winning an award can deliver businesses with an immediate competitive advantage. Although the business, like the wine, still has to prove itself under closer investigation, the accolade will help you to get noticed – and in today’s crowed marketplace, this is invaluable.
So how do you go about it? If you’re going to enter an award, do it properly. Developing high quality entries can be a time intensive process but the rewards, as referred to above, are well worth it. It can be expensive too, which is all the more reason to make sure that your entry is as good as you can possibly make it.
Some other key considerations when entering awards:
- Be selective – don’t go for every award that is vaguely relevant to your business as this could take up a disproportionate level of marketing time and spend. Consider which awards are going to have the biggest impact on your target audiences and plan them well in advance.
- Carefully read the judging criteria and make sure that your entry covers each point, as well as adheres to defined word counts.
- Provide all the information required and always, where possible, include supporting information and evidence.
- Make your entry look beautiful using a range of images and well set out text so that judges want to read and look at it. Good design will also help to show the judges that you really want this award.
- Avoid clumsy typos and grammatical errors. The judges will often have many entries to consider and they won’t want to re-read text to ensure that they understand what you are trying to say. Read and read again until the copy is clear, succinct and is tailored to the criteria.
- Shout about your successes – there is no point winning an award and not telling anyone about it.
- Use the winner’s logo on your website, email signature and marketing collateral.
- Create a news release, images and a short film to post on your website and send out as far as possible to media and via your social platforms.
- Enjoy a good team bonding session with your colleagues. Just being shortlisted means you’ve done something very special and that’s got to be worth celebrating, perhaps with a glass or two of an award-winning wine.