Entering Awards isn’t rocket science but creating an entry does require a (not so) secret formula – and that goes for Awards of every kind…local business awards, global photographic awards, national trade awards. The MOBAA’s – Modern Barber Awards closes for entry on February 28th and each of the nine categories spanning business and creative subjects will have entries that get noticed because they follow the formula…so here it is:
Take your time choosing the categories to enter: every Award entry should have love and effort lavished on it, so make sure you make the right choice for you and your business. Start first by thinking about your strengths. Sometimes you are the very last person to judge where your strengths or those of your business lies (we are all our own worst critic), so ask for help from staff, family, friends and customers. You will probably hear uplifting feedback that you never would have considered alone. Next READ THE CRITERIA, like REALLY read the criteria and then match your strengths to the criteria. Don’t blow the word count, provide the wrong type of imagery or ‘go off piste’ on criteria. The closest matches will be the ones that are closest to a win.
Evidence first, last, always: if you can’t prove your claims in an entry then its fiction and while every judge loves a good story they will have read a ton of entries by the time they get to you. Stand out with punchy information backed up with any evidence required. Anything with numbers, graphs and images will help. Once again READ THE CRITERIA. Judges will refer regularly to criteria to ensure that the entries are fulfilling all of the requirements and delivering the right evidence in the right format.
Be uniquely you: let your passion and personality show through, it’s what makes you and your business unique. A stand out entry will be full of your energy and drive and that’s contagious!
Enjoy the process: one of the unsung positives of entering Awards is that even before you’ve pressed submit or posted your entry you’ve spent valuable time looking at your successes, analysing your business, capturing great info and listening to the opinions of people whose input you value. Entering makes you stop and think about where you are and help you signpost your way to greater success in the future.
Don’t take it personally: if you don’t finalise or win, don’t invest one moment of your life in grinding your teeth and feeling bad. It just means that on that day, for these judges, in that moment, another entry hit the mark. All the great value you have in your skills and your business won’t have changed, so try again next time.
PS Once you finalise – treat it like a win! Every category has three finalists but other competitions may have more and that’s worth celebrating. Awards (like the MOBAA’s) often offer finalists marketing materials like window clings and template press releases for your local press, so shout about it!
PPS If you win – remember that you don’t win on one day, you win for 365 days! Put your win on your marketing material, email signature, Instagram profile…every damn where you can find to tell the world you got spotted for being awesome.