I have been an entrepreneur and business owner for 20 years. I have had many entrepreneurs reach out to me for business help, and/or to hire me as a business coach. One of the first questions I always get relates to the best returns on investment when it comes to marketing and advertising.
One of the best pieces of advice I have on how to grow your business and brand and establish a solid presence and foundation is to win business awards. When I was first introduced to the idea of this, I was a bit skeptical and met the idea with some objections. I figured our company was too young and not well enough established, that we were not big enough, or that I had to be with the “in” crowd to win a prestigious award. I asked myself, “why would anybody want to give me an award anyway?”
With all that doubt in mind, I still approached the new idea with excitement and started applying for awards. To my surprise, M & E Painting won its first award in 2009. To date, we have won some of the city’s, state’s, and nation’s most prestigious business awards.
So how did we do it? Pretty simple. Here are the steps:
Step 1. Decide you will make award-winning part of your marketing strategy.
Step 2. Search, List, Apply. Search for any awards that are available to you and that your company would qualify for. Create a list of these awards and when the application deadline is. Then get to work applying for the awards.
Step 3. You must capture, craft, and communicate a story that appeals to the award you are applying for. There will be a panel of judges that will be reviewing your entry. You must be an amazing storyteller and story writer. Be sure that you appeal to the essence of the award when you are sharing your story.
Step 4. Partner with and/or have somebody in your corner that is a great copywriter/copy editor. This person will help you take your story from step 3, and bring it to life, proofread it, and edit it to make sure it appears and comes across well written and professional.
Step 5. Follow up. Follow Up, Follow Up. Winning awards is a little like sales in the fact that the fortune is in the follow-up. Don’t just apply for the award and forget about it. When you apply, give the organization a call, make sure they received your entry, and ask them if they have further questions. You may be speaking at that point to one of the judges or somebody that may be critical in selecting you as a winner. Start and continue to build a relationship with this person and all people involved.
Step 6. Don’t give up. You will not win all the awards you apply for. Just keep applying. Just keep searching. Just keep working on it!
Winning business awards has been hands down one of the greatest investments of my time and energy in business to date. I promise this is one of the best and most effective ways to grow your business. One of the key tenants in a successful business is having others recognize you and praise you for your awesomeness. This way you can speak less and less about yourself, and let others do the talking for you.
Be sure you click here to Get My FREE tools, one of which includes an in-depth workbook that accompanies my book and will walk you through the exact process.
Happy Award Winning!