Drafting award submissions can sometimes be tedious and time consuming. However, entering an awards program is a great opportunity to showcase your achievements, gain recognition and promote your brand by telling your story.
All that effort is ultimately worth it as award wins can be used to attract new clients. Winning an award from a reputable organisation gives you and your brand instant credibility and allows you to be seen as a leader in your industry.
Here are some tips to help you write a great submission for an award application.
1. Efficiently allocate time
Time is essential to the success of your award submission. By giving yourself enough time to complete your submissions, you are able to answer the questions to the best of your availability.
Give yourself a couple of weeks prior to the submission deadline so no rush is involved when drafting your responses. If you miss the due date, you've missed the opportunity.
2. Make your own copy
Most award applications are completed by typing out your answers in the submission form. If you type your answers straight into this form there is a chance you may lose your work before you can submit it.
A great tip is to copy all of the questions into a document and then use this to draft your answers. The document will allow you to proof read and spell-check your answers as well as provide you with a copy of your answers for future reference.
3. Answer every question
One of the most common mistakes when submitting an awards application is not answering every question. Make sure you answer all of the questions on the award application as an incomplete form may not be accepted by the award judges. Also, by answering every question you are giving yourself a better chance of winning the award.
4. Adhere to the word limit
Awards applications will often require word limit for each response. It's important not to go over this limit because the online application will usually not allow you to write any more then they have allocated.
Your answers should be succinct, well phrased and provide the most important information to help you win the award.
5. Correctly answer questions
Carefully read every question to have a better understanding of how you should respond before you start writing your answers.
To help your answers stay on track, write out the main dot points you want to cover in each of your response. You can then add more information to each dot point.
6. Promote your brand
Most award judges won't know how great you are until you tell them. This means in all of your answers you need to explain why you deserve to win the award.
You can do this by including information about key milestones you have achieved, such as when it achieved a turnover goal or when it reached a significant anniversary.
7. Be truthful
Always be truthful when answering questions because the truth will always come out. If you are caught being untruthful in your award application, it can cause considerable damage to your reputation and embarrassment if the award is taken off you. It's best to avoid a potential PR disaster by always telling the truth in an award application.
About the author
Catriona Pollard is the author of From Unknown To Expert, a step by step framework designed to help entrepreneurs develop effective PR and social media strategies to become recognised as influencers in their field. www.unknowntoexpert.com
Catriona is also the director of CP Communications, which merges traditional PR tactics with cutting-edge social media strategies that engage consumers as well as business. www.cpcommunications.com.au