WomensNet News

And the Award Goes To…

October 29th 2021

Researchers Hendricks and Singhal report that being able to claim your business is “award-winning” can result in up to a 37 percent increase in sales, not to mention the boost to your company’s reputation for having earned an industry honor or prize. Even if the awards program isn’t well-known, laying claim to being among the best in your business can only elevate your status.

Many professional organizations, associations, trade groups, research firms, and media outlets have annual awards programs that recognize good work. There are awards for business communication, marketing, operations, quality, human resources, websites, innovation, and likely many other aspects, such as diversity, leadership, and quality control, to name a few.

Many awards (but not all) charge an application fee, so check your marketing budget before you apply to multiple programs. And also think about what you want to be known for. That is, what do you want customers and prospects to think of first when they think of your company?

If you run an ad agency, you probably want to be known for creative campaigns, graphic design, copywriting, and/or public relations. If you run a manufacturing firm, you might want your ability to partner and collaborate with vendors to be recognized, or the low incidence of product defects. And if you run a bookstore, retail and customer service awards might be most useful for your company.

You could also think about any challenges you might be facing. If attracting top talent has gotten harder, pursuing awards that recognize yours as a “best place to work” might catch the eye of top performers. If yours is a local or historic business, there are awards for architecture that could raise awareness of your venture. Or if your company is 100 percent online, then maybe website and online sales awards would be most useful, to earn customer trust.

Finding Awards

Once you’ve brainstormed the aspects of your business you want to showcase, or highlight, finding awards is as easy as Googling a keyword and “award.” A search for “marketing award” yields programs like The Drum Awards, The Webby Awards, or the Effie Awards, to name a handful.

Or, you can start with the professional or trade associations you belong to and search on their websites to see if they have any awards programs. Next, check when the entry deadline is.

There are plenty of awards available, so start with those that will have the biggest impact on your company if you win.

Completing the Application

When you find a competition you’d like to enter, gather all the information you need to complete the application. Depending on the type of award you’re entering, you may need to pull together samples of your work, proof of your incorporation, or provide details regarding revenue and employees. Compiling all the facts or materials you’ll need in advance will make the process faster and easier.

Make note of deadlines, to allow yourself enough time to craft a stellar response.

The key with any award application is to be sure you’re answering the question(s) asked, and to provide proof. Quantifying results is smart, whenever you can. And be sure you stay below the maximum word count; if you’re instructed to provide no more than 250 words, don’t go beyond that or you risk being disqualified. Follow instructions.

Making the Most of Your Win

Winning an award creates new opportunities to promote your business, both in the short- and long-term. When you receive official notification that you’ve won, consider doing some or all of the following:

  • Draft and send a press release out over the wire, meaning through a paid publicity service like eReleases or PR Web, to announce your win across the internet. Even if your honor is local, if a national news outlet happens to pick it up, it can boost the visibility of your website.
  • Write a blog post about it.
  • Add the award logo to your website’s home page to announce your win.
  • Include a short write-up about your win in any customer newsletters you send out.
  • Email your customers and prospects to share your exciting news.
  • Add signage to doors or windows that announce your award, so that customers entering your business see it.
  • Frame the notification and put it on your wall.
  • Make sure to update all boilerplate descriptions of your business to include your most recent win.
  • Share an Instagram post showing your plaque, trophy, certificate, or letter.
  • Share a Facebook video or photo of you receiving the award.
  • Add mention of the award in your LinkedIn profile.
  • Add the award logo on all your marketing materials, from your stationery to envelopes, labels, and business cards, for example.
  • Put the logo on promotional items, such as notepads or pens or bags.

The best thing about awards is that as soon as you win, you are forevermore “award-winning.” Make sure everyone you come in contact with knows it and use it every chance you get.

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