As mentioned in last month’s blog post, we were recently awarded ‘Community Media Company of The Year – London 2022’ from Prestige Awards. It was a momentous occasion for us as it was the first business award we’ve won and, as you can imagine, we were on Cloud 9!
So, in light of our new accolade, we’ll be taking a closer look at business awards and why you should consider them as part of your marketing campaign. Bear in mind that with most awards you’ll usually have to submit various forms of evidence to be considered. For us, this included evidence of original testimonials and how we’ve developed as a company amongst other things, so if you do receive praise – make sure you hold onto it!
What’s the big deal with a business award?
In short, receiving a business award is a great way to be recognised for your company’s accomplishments. They are also an excellent way for companies to motivate their employees and show them that they care about them. For example, they can be given as an internal recognition or to external customers and partners.
For small businesses looking to receive an award – it can be based on a number of different achievements – from quality of service and innovation, to leadership and social responsibility.
Here’s just some great reasons to enter business awards:
– They can help you grow your business
– You have the opportunity to be recognised as a leader in your industry
– They are a great way of increasing customer retention
– Your company will be seen as a thought leader
– Being an ‘award-winning’ business will help attract new business
– You’ll impress potential investors and/or business partners
Which awards and when?
In short, they come in all shapes and sizes – and you’ll probably find an award to enter most months of the year. One of the most prestigious business awards is the World Entrepreneur Award. It’s an international award that recognises entrepreneurs who have achieved excellence in innovation and entrepreneurship. The likes of Elon Musk, Richard Branson and Steve Jobs have all be presented to at these awards.
Now we’re not suggesting that you enter The World Entrepreneur Award, particularly if you’re a very new company or a micro business, but the point we’re making is that it’s important to do your research – and also consider entering awards based on your industry type as this is where you can really niche down.
Award programmes are a great way to get recognition for your work; both among your peers and in standing out in the crowd. In terms of a marketing tool for companies, awards can be very powerful to win new customers and create brand identity – if used in the right way of course. Think valuable exposure and publicity opportunities.
How to win a business award!
First of all, the award you choose should be tailored to what your business does best and that you are eligible to apply– so read the small print! Some of the most popular awards for small businesses include:
– Industry awards: These include awards from organizations such as Forbes, Entrepreneur Magazine, Entrepreneur of the Year Award etc. These types of awards can help you get recognised in your industry and make a name for yourself among other players in the same field
– Local awards: These include awards from local organisations such as Chamber of Commerce and the FSB.
Second, make sure that you have everything ready before you apply for an award. You need to have a good amount of time to prepare your application and make sure that it is well-written and convincing enough to win.
You will need to demonstrate why your business is better than others and deserves to be awarded. This means collecting evidence – from your team, your customers, your sales and providing the figures to back it up – and then convey that information in a way to make it easy for others to understand. When you write, keep it simple – in plain English. Remember, the judges may know nothing about your industry or what you do so the simpler, the better. If you can, ask someone to read through your submission before you send it. Did you know that our parent company, Luna Creative Media, offers a proofreading service?
Be sure to answer all the questions the judges ask – and double check this. Very often, entrants are given guidelines on what they can submit and ultimately, what the judges are looking for. If you steer away from this and go off on a tangent about how you managed to save £20 on stationery last year (and the award category is all about innovation), you won’t get any brownie points.
Make sure you highlight your Unique Selling Points (USP) and illustrate what you do differently from your competitors. Back statements up with evidence (eg testimonials, sales figures etc) and go into entering the award with a positive mindset – it makes a difference to how you word your entry report.
And finally – best of luck. If you do win, make sure you shout about it from the rooftops. Take it from us, there’s something really nice about adding ‘award-winning’ to bios and social media descriptions.
On a more personal note, we were delighted when we were approached by content strategist and copywriter, Rachel Hodges, who interviewed us for her blog ‘Brave Time To Start a Magazine’ – have a read and let us know what you think!
Next month we’ll be looking at CRMs – and how they can help keep you on track when it comes to those all-important sales and keeping in touch with your customers.