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Awards go a long way

Many congratulations to my clients, A2B Excellence, on winning an Employee Engagement award!

…And, ahem, congratulations to Wells Park Communications for writing the successful award entry.

In a world where marketing is multi-layered and it’s a challenge to shout above the noise, awards are a remarkably low-cost opportunity to gain traction. Better still, the benefit grows for smaller businesses.

Awards (so long as they’re recognised and suitably substantial) yield a year or so of instant credibility, a stack of good photos, the chance to take clients on a jolly and a good excuse to email everyone in your contact book with the good news.

Yet the cost of entry is often zero; and even if there is a fee, it’s much less than the cost of, say, entry to a second-rate conference; or the exorbitant cost of exhibiting at such events. Yep, awards are great value.

The secret to success, however, is in maximising the opportunity:

  • If third parties can ‘nominate’ you, you’re already winning the PR battle. Even if you don’t win, place, or even get a mention, you can spend the next year marketing the fact that you were “A Widget Awards Nominee”
  • Meet the entry criteria, by applying for the right category with the right credentials. Just as 80% of CVs get thrown out within 30 seconds because they simply don’t meet the clearly defined application criteria, so awards are full of duff applicants. Exceed the demands of the process and you’ll already be slashing competition by half.
  • Tell a story. Almost all corporate awards are endlessly boring. The judges must wade through a raft of jargonese corporate babble. To stand out, tell a story in plain English: what you did, why you did it, who for, and why it was amazing. Aim to surprise, engage and charm your way to victory.