Post written by Loudoun Chamber Events Manager, Ashley White Krimmel
Recently we hosted a workshop with a focus on “Create a Winning Application” for the upcoming Small Business Awards on November 8th. We heard from panelists who have recently won awards at this event and they shared their best tips on how to submit an application and what the judges are looking for!
- History lessons. Go back through your history and business milestones and write down the key points that make you unique. Show how far you’ve come and why you started your business in the first place.
- Talk it up. As an exercise, discuss your mission, purpose, and goals with a neutral party or someone who has not heard of your business. Create a clear and concise definition of who you are, what you do, and what sets you apart.
- Focus on your customer. Show how you strive to make every customer experience the best in every aspect. Keep in mind how your business helps those who are providing you a service as well (donors, volunteers, board members, etc.)
- Innovate and elevate. Consider the ways that your business has broken barriers and put you on the map. If you were to check out the competition, what is it about your business that raises you above the rest?
- Community is the key. Make sure you can convey your story while also showing your plans for the future. Highlight community involvement including collaboration with other businesses, non-profits, and yes, the Loudoun Chamber!
Now you have the tools to fill out an application…what’s next?
Marketing materials – Your marketing materials must coincide with and represent your business. So, get creative! Testimonials are an excellent promotional tool and can be submitted with your application. Filming a video is also beneficial as it is a visual explanation of your business, why you are different, and how you connect with the category you are applying for.
The Small Business Awards nomination process is now open and closes July 19th. If your business meets the general business eligibility you will have until August 23rdat 4pm to turn in your application and any supporting material for your business. You are judged only on what you turn in.
Sponsorships are still available, but they are selling out quickly. This is THE event for Loudoun Business! You don’t want to miss it!
Note: When you are nominated, you will receive an email from our Events staff with application information.