The SME National Business Awards is an opportunity to advertise to both your customers and prospective customers why they should use you rather than one of your competitors. It is a perfect “Shop window”.
What do you say when a prospective customer asks, “Why should I use you rather than those guys down the road?” How good will you feel is you could answer, “Well, I was a finalist (or winner) of the SME National Business Awards, which suggests a panel of independent judges believe we offer something special.”
So what is it that I, as a judge, look for that puts you in that possible position of profile? Well that can be summarised as follows:
- Attention to detail. Make sure your entry is accurate, both in grammar and its content. There is nothing more off-putting than seeing an entry where accounting figures do not stack up or the application refers to an appendix that is nowhere to be seen.
- Be transparent. Do not be shy in reporting things that have not gone well. I am more impressed with an entry which cites something that did not go as planned (and, more importantly, what steps were taken as a result, both on that matter and going forward) than a list of testimonials saying how good you are. Two or three testimonials, coupled with an example of something that went awry is well balanced.
- “A wow factor”. When considering applications judges have the opportunity to grant one entry in each category a one-off additional mark, referred to as a “Wow factor”. If you have achieved something you consider special then cite it and with enthusiasm. Make it stand out and grab the attention of the judges.
- Short and concise. Just what it says on the tin. Keep your narratives short and concise. All too often those that get the lower marks are applications that are crammed with “Salesman” text. Short and to the point wins the judges’ interest.
Gary Pettit is the Managing Director of PBC Business Recovery & Insolvency. He is a licensed insolvency practitioner and an accredited mediator.
Telephone: (01604) 212150