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Don't kid yourself - winning awards is not for losers


When did you last win a major industry award?

If your trophy shelf is looking a bit empty, it could just be that you’re going about it the wrong way.

In which case you’ll be missing out on some major marketing benefits.  It’s easy to kid yourself that awards don’t matter – that you’ve got better things to do, and who cares anyway?

But that’s just what people tell themselves who never win.

The fact is that awards really do work.

There’s a good reason why they are big business in every industry. They help winners to get noticed in competitive markets, whether they are selling security solutions, consumer products, arthouse movies or discoveries in astrophysics.

On a personal level, winning a credible award - or just being shortlisted - can give a measurable career boost.

It looks great on your LinkedIn profile, on your CV and it feels bloody good too.  (Did you know that Nobel Prize winners have a longer life-expectancy than their runner-up peers - an average 1.4 years according to a 2017 study -  a fact attributed to the feelings of self-esteem that come from winning?)

OK, TMF can’t promise you that, but we can give you a significant chance of success.  Over recent months we’ve enabled our clients to pick up a cluster of big awards. At the risk of blowing our own PR trumpet (we’re modest here, honestly) in 2018-19 we’ve scooped a Security & Fire Excellence Award, a Platinum Hermes Creative Award, two Outstanding Security Performance Awards in different countries, a Campus Security & Life Safety Award and a Safety & Health Excellence Award.  There are a couple more in the pipeline this month, plus some decent shortlistings – don’t underestimate those - but you get the point.

And it hasn’t been through luck.

So, considering we’re feeling generous particularly since the Hermes Creative Award was a win for TMF, here are some quick tips:

  1. Target your entry. Some awards are a lot harder to win than others, simply because of numbers.  By all means go for the most popular categories – if you deserve to win, then you may - but also why not put in additional entries for something less crowded?
  2. Answer the questions. Make your case directly, as if you are standing in front of the judging panel.  Include customer references and hard data to back-up your claims. (A common mistake is just to cut-and-paste generic text from brochures – if you do that, you’re almost certainly not going to win).  
  3. Talk to the award organisers. They put in a lot of work and are really keen to see strong entries. So get in touch, tell them what you are thinking of doing and ask for their feedback before you submit your entry.
  4. Avoid disqualifiers. Check the specific terms of entry for each award, such validity dates for products/projects.  This seems basic, but it’s surprising how often entries are ruled out.
  5. Be inspiring. The judges are human like you – they are looking for positive examples of success and ‘star quality’ that they can feel good about.
  6. We could go on (honestly, we really could) but if you want quick help with a specific award scheme, or would just like to check what your best options are, let’s talk. Get in touch here and we’ll go into detail.

Now then… start winning – come on, you deserve it!