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Planning ahead – why awards should be part of your comms strategy

in News

Autumn is traditionally a busy time for awards finals across a broad range of sectors (and a great excuse to get a head start on Christmas party season!).

We recently attended the Women In Housing Awards with long term client Manifest. Team member Ellen was a finalist in the Consultant of the Year award and although she was pipped to the post at the final, the overall experience was, she says “Amazing!”.

“To be recognised amongst other outstanding consultants as a contender for this award was a fantastic result for me personally. And for Manifest, it was a great opportunity to catch up with current clients and make new contacts within a really focused event full of people who are genuinely trying to improve the housing sector for everyone.” 

Later this week, we’ll be joining hundreds of businesses from across the region for the Norfolk Business Awards. Amongst numerous others, we’ll be rooting for David Utting Engineering Ltd on the night whose innovative Smartshop product, canny business model and ambitious plans for global development secured them a spot in the Investing in Future Growth category.  

As first-time entrants, our work for David to create an entry into the #NBA2018 has not only shone a light on a highly successful business that was otherwise under the radar, it’s also given his business the impetus to make significant strides with broader marketing efforts for 2019. As part of our support for them in preparing their award entry, we spoke to several clients to gain their feedback and this, alongside broader market research has helped to clarify areas for focus.  

Next February will be the Tourism Awards (and hopefully an evacuation-free ceremony this time round!). Our specialism in travel and tourism combined with experience in writing awards entries saw us called upon by several businesses to help with their entries. Growing companies like Hilltop Outdoor Centre, who we helped to bag the Customer Care award at the 2017 EDP Business Awards. That win, according to marketing manager Helen Read, has been hugely significant in their success over the past year, over the course of which they have welcomed more visitors than ever before.  

The primary objective for you in entering awards may be to add credibility to your business, publicly acknowledge your team’s efforts or promote your products and services. Whether you win or not, the process required to submit a clear and rounded reasoning can be an incredibly useful exercise. It prompts a period of reflection on the business to date, as well as consolidating future objectives, and can of course also highlight key areas for future development.  

It’s often more efficient to work on an annual programme of entries, scoping out and targeting award series with different audiences. From general awards bounded by geographic territories, to sector-specific and niche series, once you’ve identified your key awards messaging this can then be swiftly refocused to meet differing judging criteria. And of course, all of that work can also be repurposed to provide fresh content for your website.  

If you’d like to find out more about how awards can form part of your communications strategy for the year ahead, contact us for an initial consultation call and start planning now for a rewarding 2019