Winning an industry award is a great reason to celebrate – it demonstrates your expertise and acts as a credible endorsement from a respected third party. But to make an award truly work for you and your business, there’s a few proactive steps you should take. Increase your exposure, open new doors, and attract and retain good staff off the back of your award with the following 5 strategies.
Increase your exposure
1. Digital assets
Award bodies will often send finalists and winners a digital badge that is created to fit various social media channels and email signatures. If you don’t receive one, ask if they can supply one for you. If it’s a reputable organisation like the AMI, they will be happy to help, as it’s also raising the exposure of their award program. If it’s a smaller award body with fewer resources to offer this, you could create your own based on their branding assets.
The great thing about these digital assets is they have long-lasting benefits. You aren’t just an award winner for that week, month, or year. You own that title forever (although I would suggest you enter awards every few years to maintain currency – promoting your 10-year-old recognition tends to lose its impact!).
Leverage the PR your award body engages in, or create your own media opportunities by sharing the news in a press release to local or industry media. Include reasons you won the award and add in some of the judges comments. To strengthen your award announcement further, mention recent news of business growth, client acquisition, team expansion, key projects, and anything else readers may be interested in.
Open new doors
3. Include it as a key message
As well as using the visual assets discussed above, include “award winner” or “winner of” in your capability statement, proposals, pitches or presentations for new business opportunities. By adding it to your copywriting as a key message, your business can become synonymous with the award win, and therefore, synonymous with excellence, trust, and credibility. A great first impression for a new prospect, don’t you think?
4. Create a speaker kit
Do you want to become a thought leader in your space? Be seen as an authority figure? A great way to get known is to become a speaker, panel member, award judge or any other public speaking role that educates and influences others.
By reinforcing your credibility, award recognition can help you get in front of more audiences. If you don’t already have one, now is the time to create a Speaker Kit. This is a document that contains your bio, areas of expertise, and suggested topics to help you pitch for speaking opportunities. When you include your award win and any other speaking or media experience, you build a robust document that cements your authority in your preferred topics.
Staff retention and attraction
5. Add it to your recruitment process
Just as you’ll be adding your award win to your copywriting as a key message, you can add the award win to your recruitment ads as well. Including reference to this demonstrates your leadership, credibility, and high standards so that you attract people of the same calibre.
For current employees, an email or morning tea thanking them for the role they played in the win can go a long way to cultivating and maintaining a dedicated workforce. You can also suggest employees add it to their email signature and LinkedIn accounts so they can publicly align with the award recognition.
Award celebrations shouldn’t stop at the award ceremony. In fact, this is just the beginning. I love talking about award entries as much as I love writing them! Feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss leveraging your recent award win or applying for one you have your eye on.