Awards are a good thing for business to have — having “award-winner” in front of your business name gives potential clients a decent level of trust in your business before they even work with you, and it reinforces to your current clients why they continue to deal with you. It’s also good for staff morale too — everyone likes being on the winning team!
But be warned: the entry criteria and process can be arduous. We asked Debbie Harrison from Casual Fridays to share her expert tips — Debbie’s written a number of award entries for our clients over the years and had great success (she was 3 from 3 last year). Here’s what she had to say:
So, why do we get so “lucky” with our award entries? Here’s my 3 golden tips…
Don’t be trite.
Yeah yeah yeah you care about customer experience. And your team. And your bottom line. Spoiler: so does EVERY business! Literally, all of them will be saying this exact same thing. Don’t tell them what matters to you — show them. What have you done, specifically, that backs up this point? What actions did you take in the past year, where’s your walk to back up your talk? And then get your data on: what results did you get? Did you see an increase in customer loyalty, staff turnover, revenue? Don’t just state the obvious — make it clear what you did to support that and then what it did for your business as a result.
Enter the right category.
Just because you do “marketing” doesn’t mean you should enter the marketing award. Hand on heart, are you really, really good at it? Entries are really time-consuming to do so pick your battles. Look for the categories you really think you could win and then go hard with those ones. Don’t think you have a chance in any of them? Fair enough — get your head down, butt up and work hard over the coming 12 months to ensure you ARE worthy of entering next year.
Write something people want to read.
Remember there are humans at the other end of your entry process — real life humans, who are reading submission after submission late at night when they’d far rather be watching Netflix. Don’t make them yawn. Don’t mistake them for your university lecturer. Give them a treat — make your submission readable, easy-to-read and a good yarn. Maybe don’t make it as casual in tone as this post but make it easy-going. Think about a party: do you want to listen to the pretentious jerk with his vocab you don’t understand, or the dude with a great story and even better delivery? Be the storyteller.