How to Promote Yourself Or Your Company Through Award Competitions
There isn't a day that goes by that I don't receive some sort of announcement about an awards competition. We get so many, in fact, that I have created a special place on my website where you can learn about what opportunities are awaiting.
With all the awards programs out there, how many of you incorporate that into your marketing plan? Yes, I know it's a lot of work but the benefits you reap outweigh the effort invested. What can an award do for you besides making you feel good? For a start it can lend instant credibility to your or your company. Just think about the words "award winner." Doesn't that sound important? Wouldn't you like to see that phrase beside your name? Awards make a good visual to. If you are given permission, use the award's logo or banner in your promotional material or on your website.
So, how do you utilize the award and promote yourself in your marketing plan?
First you have to make sure you let others know about the recognition. Announce your award to the media, clients, prospects and employees. Write a press release both before and after the competition. Even if you don't win you can showcase the competition in your material. Just making a commitment to submit is worthy of special notice. Receiving an award is a good way to get points from the boss. In fact even being a runner up or a nominee is fodder for self-promotion. For example, I received a full page promotion in a local magazine mailed to executives in Atlanta when I was a nominee for an award last year.
Second, don't set the award on the shelf. Use it to continually reinforce your success. Incorporate the award into your promotional material. You can add your award just like a certification to your business card and stationery too.
Third, use the competition's format a means for evaluation. Entering a competition can give you valuable independent feedback on your performance. Having an external judge review your efforts and provide feedback is worth the entry fee alone. Winning an award is an opportunity to prove to your customers and suppliers just how successful/creative you are. Remember this is an independent and prestigious endorsement of the quality of you and your company. It functions as well as testimonial
Finally, celebrate! Awards generate confidence and pride in employees throughout the company. Have a party to celebrate the accomplishment. You can use an award as a reason to hold a company event celebrating the accomplishment. Don't forget to invite customers and potential customers.
Awards can open doors - to new suppliers, customers, investors and partners. Enter a competition and see how quickly you end with another great promotional opportunity.
JoAnn Hines' specialty is PACKAGING PEOPLE.
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