How To Generate PR: Awards Evening

One of the most effective ways of achieving respect and business in the corporate community is through successfully winning credible awards. Winning an award on behalf of the company can also be an incredible morale boost especially in times of recession, not to mention a trustworthy third party commendation of a product, service or company can help increase sales, enhance reputation and generate growth! Why wouldn’t you? It can be difficult to know where to start, where to enter and what for, take a read below at some of the tips on offer for your first-time business awards.

Why Enter?

For small, start-up companies this could dramatically boost to sales and marketing efforts can be priceless. In terms of supporting a company’s sales activity, a recent survey indicated that 82% of senior business people are influenced by awards when buying products and services. A lot of marketing mileage can be gained from an award…it should appear on the website, company brochures, recruitment material and become a real marketing asset that you can reel out time and time again.

What Schemes?

One of the biggest misconceptions about awards is that only big companies will win, where some award ceremonies are exclusive to small businesses! Most awards are often run by magazines, newspapers, companies, professional institutes or government schemes, therefore all it takes is some research to identify whether they have small company/start up categories.

Let’s Max Your Chances

With more companies competing for award recognition, the competition is getting fierce and preparation is key! It may sound obvious but try to ensure that you pick the right category to suit your business and check whether you’re eligible for more than one category – the more you enter, the more chance of success. Always read the entry criteria very carefully as they normally apply limitations such as launch date, location or company size and if your company can’t meet the conditions, there’s no point in entering, you’ll only waste money and time!

You will need to demonstrate why you deserve to win and evidence is crucial, they may want to view effective examples of things such as; customer reviews, sales figures, industry partnerships and depending upon your category it depends  strong growth. Again, if the proof isn’t there, reconsider whether you want to enter. It often helps to have an objective person read through your submission to get an unbiased opinion and ensure it reflects your achievements accurately.

Remember that everybody appreciates recognition for their efforts whether it’s from customers or employees – it’s a result of them that you are where you are today, so mention them in your acceptance speech in order to demonstrate your pride in your company and employees achievements!

Stand out:  It’s hard to be noticed and these judges are being bombarded with different products and services all the time, especially during competition time! You have to capture their imagination, be creative in the way you present your idea/product/service and grab their attention.

Blog: When you enter these competitions, ensure that your website is top notch because the first thing the judges are going to do is Google your company! Having a blog on your website is a good way to constantly update your site, keep in touch with your customers and a basis for your social media activity. Ensure that all your social media is linked to your website and vice-versa, so that readers can easily share your content into their networks via Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and so on to boost your online visibility.

Prepare: Don’t simply dive in – try and do lots of research on what award competitions you should enter, some could be a scam! You shouldn’t be paying too much for entry, a typical amount is between £30 – £60! Don’t be fooled into paying too much and also initially start by looking local. Remember to look at prize you will be receiving and whether there is actually an evening where the glass award will be presented to you, the more publicity the better! Good luck on entering your first awards evening!