A is for… Awards
Well, it may be an obvious one but we thought let’s start at the very beginning!
So, what are awards? Awards are organised by independent companies, trade associations, magazines and the media as well as the Government (think Queen’s Honours and The Queen’s Awards for Enterprise as just two exampled). As either an individual or as a business (or both) we’re able to enter an award and a group of judges will sift through all the nominations scoring them against a predefined matrix. Their job is to find the best business, business person, employer, hairdresser, beautician, financial adviser, company culture….. the list is almost endless. Award nominees and finalists are then invited to attend the awards ceremony where the winners are announced, celebrated and awarded their trophy and/or certificate.
There are literally thousands of awards to choose from in the UK alone but, a genuine note of warning here, sadly not all awards are equal. Some are run purely to generate income for the organiser whilst others really are little more than a popularity contest, so choosing which award and which category(ies) to enter is absolutely key.
That all said, entering prestigious, credible awards will lead to a myriad of benefits for you and/or your business including (but not limited to);
- The growth of your business
- An increase in the number of prospective clients beating a path to your door
- Retaining your existing clients
- Encouraging new talent to apply to work with you
- Retaining your existing talent
- Building team engagement and a stronger company culture
- Attracting external investment
- Attracting the right suppliers and external stakeholders to work with you
How do awards achieve this? Quite simply entering prestigious, well thought of, well connected and credible awards and being shortlisted as a finalist (let alone winning!) will raise your profile and further enhance your reputation across the business community/your industry. This will, in turn, help you to achieve any number of the above benefits.
How? Because entering (and winning!) awards is seen as a powerful third party endorsement. It acknowledges that you’re as good as you say you are. It’s an important, respected external mark of approval and it clearly differentiates you from your competition. Not only that but entering awards gives you a heck of a lot to talk about across your social media channels as well as via your marketing and PR activities.
If what we’ve said so far has peaked your interest what should you do next?
- Clarify exactly what it is that you want to achieve from entering (and winning!) awards. This will affect your choice of awards and, as importantly, the categories you decide to enter
- Research the options that are out there. There are absolutely loads and if you don’t know where to start we can help by sending you a copy of our ‘Starter For Ten’ awards list. Send us a DM and we’ll do the rest!
- Once you’ve selected your awards/categories that you’re interested in entering read through the entry criteria carefully and be very clear on how and by when you need to apply. Be ruthless. If you really don’t feel that you can answer all the questions think about either entering the following year or choosing another award/category. There’s a lot of competition out there and writing really strong award nominations takes time (believe us… we’ve written quite a few!). Enter awards/categories that enable you to tell your story powerfully and put the rest to one side for later
- Pull together an Award Strategy Plan that lays out what awards/categories you’re going to enter, the deadline date, the award ceremony date etcetera so you can plan in all the supporting activities you’re going to undertake in order to fully maximise each nomination, finalist position and win. Again, we have a DRAFT Award Strategy Plan to help you get organised. Send us a DM and we’ll send you a copy back
So, that’s our A is for… Awards. Did it help? What did you think and, most importantly, which awards are you going to enter this year?