Think local awards are just for established, or brick-and-mortar businesses? That was before the age of social media and the easy access to many home-based businesses. If you’re one of those still trying to establish yourself, listen up.
Nominating yourself can feel a bit foolish, or like you’re bragging, but it’s quite the opposite. It’s a vote of self-confidence in yourself and your business, because if you aren’t aiming to provide your customers with the best product or service, what are you really in business for?
So, assuming, as agreed above, that you go into business to provide the best service possible in your industry, the logical next step is to let everyone know about it so that they can have the chance to seek you out. By nominating yourself, you will get listed among other greats in your industry in that nominal pool list.
We wrote a more detailed blog on how to work the local award process and included some tips to make it worth your time. If anything though, simply getting nominated and having your name listed in the first round of voting is good enough on its own.
A lot of the community will vote in the nomination portion (when they first see the list go out), and may not even bother to come back for voting once it’s down to the top three. So just throw your name out there and see where it takes you!
- Lots of people seeing your name, even if you don’t get past the nomination portion
- Gets you free social media publicity, but more so if you are ready to use it
- Can grow your mailing list and name recognition if used properly
- They are usually advertising tools for newspapers, so you’ll receive sales calls
- It won’t really feel like having “won” something, more like a marketing tool
- Trying to win is more time-consuming to win than you might have time for
- It is not for people uncomfortable with sharing, or asking for help
- If you advertise properly, you will now have a large mailing list to manage.. and they don’t want to hear from you only at contest time
Why some people choose not to…
Let me start off by saying that if you had told me to nominate my own business a year or two ago, I would have scoffed at you. But a lot of things change in a year or two.
Megan Wise, of Sweet Pea Confections, makes a really good point. The award just wouldn’t feel like an award if you a) nominated yourself in the first place, and b) got all of your friends to vote for you.
And that’s a completely fair point. That’s the same line of thinking I had up until recently.
And then… I realized that many of the larger businesses were just winning because they themselves were running campaigns. Or asking their employees to log in and vote daily.
I also realized the set of 20-25 families I care for at the daycare was probably never going to get me any kind of prize versus the much larger daycare centers, even if mine was truly better than theirs.
So, I switched my thinking up a little. Instead of seeing it as an award (that I would probably never win due to the small size of my business), I could use this as a marketing tool to get more people to see my business.
Where to find them in Bryan/College Station:
Best Of The Brazos – Brazos Life Magazine
Readers’ Choice Awards – The Eagle
Best of BCS – Maroon Weekly