Turning That Award Win Into New Clients

Recognition Is Fine; New Business Is Better

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Marc Brownstein Marc Brownstein
Our agency is riding the awards high right now. Last week, we won Best-of-Show in our local ADDY awards event. Got lots of press. Congratulatory emails and calls the next day. Even received a few baskets of goodies from partners and class-act competitors.

I can't tell you how many people -- industry and lay folks alike -- said to me, "I'll bet winning Best-of-Show gets you lots of new clients, huh?" Of course, I nodded in agreement. But you and I both know it doesn't always happen that easily. You have to have an awards plan -- or, as my PR director says, a merchandising program. Sounds more elegant, I guess.

So, here's what we plan to do.
  • First, we sent out an internal memo first thing in the a.m. after the show, recognizing the winning teams. Always important to communicate internally before going externally.
  • Next, we made a digital copy of the announcement in the newspaper, and sent it to clients, prospects, influencers and partners.
  • After that, we're making a copy of the award and framing the newspaper ad that announced it, and giving it to our client for whom we won the top award.
  • We won a total of 22 awards, and are making a mini-website featuring the awards. An email will be sent out to our database with a link to the site. We did this last year as well, with good results.
  • A press release is being prepared by our agency to cover the media outlets that didn't cover the ADDYs.
  • A section on our website is being devoted to it.
  • The actual crystal award is being featured in a prominent place in our agency for all staff, clients and visitors to see.
  • Last, we intend to celebrate as an agency. Soon we're shutting the agency down a little early and taking everyone out for bowling, beer and a salute to our team.
I hope our playbook, er, Merchandising Program, helps you get the most out of your awards success. I'm interested to know what ideas you've come up with to get mileage out of award wins, and if they ever converted into new business wins.
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