And the Award Goes To…
Whether it’s the Olympics, the Oscars, or a coffee mug stating you’re the “World’s Greatest something,” we are hardwired to want to win and be recognized for our contributions and efforts.
It’s no different in business. In fact, at KNB Communications, we strive to make awards part of our clients’ marketing and PR strategy. We are proud to have secured a number of tops honors on behalf of our clients (and our own agency) at 2021 Healthcare IT Marketing Community (HITMC) awards ceremony, including marketing campaign of the year, best use of media relations, best landing page, bet use of social media, and employee engagement. Even more exciting, KNB’s own Jemma Roche was named “Rising Star” of the year in the healthcare marketing, PR, and communications space.
Awards are much more than a fancy trophy or line on a resume. They can have a positive and long-lasting impact on your company. Here are a few benefits of having an award-winning business:
Increased credibility. When a third party recognizes your company as “the best” at something, your customers and potential customers notice, and this endorsement acts as a stamp of approval and can be used as a business development tool.
Instant PR & marketing. Social media, press releases, blogs, the award’s logo on your home page — all of your award content builds brand awareness. Even better, the organization behind the award typically has its own campaign to name winners and link to their sites, which helps with your SEO and search rankings.
Industry benchmarking. Award criteria is often a good indicator of what others in your space are doing and what you should be doing. The application process allows you to view your company with a new perspective, which can beg the question, are we doing this too? And if not, why not?
Employee engagement & retention. Awards don’t just recognize the company’s achievements, they recognize (either directly or indirectly) the people behind the curtain. If your company wins “blog of the year,” your employees who write the content, develop the code, and promote the blog are also winners. And when they’re recognized and celebrated for their contributions, they’re more motivated and inspired to continue producing great work.
Recruiting top talent. Everyone wants to work for a winner, especially if your company is recognized for its employee relations programs. Do you offer the best benefits? Have high employee satisfaction scores? Being named a top workplace attracts top talent. Even if your awards are more aligned with company outcomes, those who are the best in their field want to work for companies that are the best in their field. Either way, you’re going to win points with HR.
Not all awards are created equal.
Perhaps even more important than winning an award is ensuring you’re applying for the right awards. At best, “winning” the wrong award offers no value to your company. At worst, it can do more harm than good. Here are a few things to consider before applying:
What is the criteria? Awards should recognize the best in the industry, and they should have a high bar for winning. The criteria should also be specific and relevant. Anything that’s subjective, nebulous, or seems unimpressive probably is.
Who are the judges? If an NBA referee was suddenly scoring Olympic gymnastics, you’d probably be skeptical. The same is true for professional awards. Anyone deciding who a winner is should be an established expert in the field.
Will you be paying by credit card? If your application requires a monetary contribution, or winners are expected to purchase a marketing package, act like you’re on Tinder and swipe left. Pay to play awards are usually more about ego than excellence.
Will you be in good company? Look at past winners and ask yourself if that’s the company you want to keep. If the last seven winners all went bankrupt, it’s possible those doling out the awards aren’t picking real winners.
Do you deserve it? After looking at the criteria, check your bias and ask yourself if you believe you’ve earned this award.