Industry awards recognise outstanding professionals and organisations, providing a great boost for both personal and corporate brands. Fortunately, the recognition that comes with winning doesn’t need to stop at the conclusion of the award ceremony. With a little bit of planning and communication, you can leverage an award to capture lasting benefits to you and your organisation.
Promoting your award win goes beyond updating your website, publishing social media posts and including an article in your internal eNewsletter. While these are all great ways to spread awareness of your win, they pale in comparison to the third party credibility afforded by media coverage, which can catapult your business reputation, attracting new clients or customers.
Here are some tips to help you do just that.
1. Be timely. Take advantage of the news value of your achievement and send out a media release to the key journalists in your industry within 24 hours of winning your award. Be clear that this media release is on a time-sensitive event.
2. Craft a clear subject line. With journalists receiving hundreds of messages a day, the reality is that releases live and die by the quality of a subject line. Make sure yours stands out from the crowd. Get straight to the point by clearly identifying your organisation and the particular award it won. For example, “JB Hi-Fi wins Best Overall Giving Program at inaugural Workplace Giving Awards”.
3. Keep it simple and concise. Journalists are generally very busy, and spend only a few seconds skimming through each email – if that. Get to the point right away by using the inverted triangle method for structuring information. Place the most important details about your award win at the beginning of the release.
4. Include quotes from key spokespeople. Yes, your organisation won an award. So what? Use quotes from key spokespeople to highlight the importance of your win, and what it means for the business and industry as a whole. Include quotes from your CEO, as well as a representative from the award coordinator.
5. Target relevant media. While award coordinators usually send out their own media release regarding winners, there’s no harm in reaching out to journalists and media outlets as well. However, instead of sending your release to anyone and everyone in the media, take a targeted approach. Make a list of the media outlets relevant to your key audiences. For example, industry media, local media and community news outlets. It also pays to research influential bloggers or podcasters in your industry who may be interested in sharing your award win with their networks.
6. Leverage other opportunities such as contributor marketing. While media releases are a great way to generate media coverage, sometimes outlets are looking for something different. Contributor marketing is a great way to write and talk about your award and organisation from a first-person perspective. For example, you could offer to write about specifics in your career that led to the award win, lessons you learned along the way, significant success factors, and what values you and your organisation live/work by, which helped you get to where you are.
When the award ceremony is over and the festivities have wrapped up for the evening, don’t let your award collect dust in the cupboard. Instead, use it to your advantage. A little planning and communication can reap massive rewards.
This article was originally published in Business Woman Media.