Blog Series: Competition Types - Part IV of IV
Welcome back! If you haven’t read any other parts in the series, I’d recommend starting with part one. When planning a business or innovation competition, it’s always a good idea to understand the many different elements available, learning to assemble them in the way that best fits your goals.
In the last blog (part III), I wrote about a number of alternative competition types including innovation competitions, case study competitions, and hack-a-thons. These are all great formats for groups looking to stay industry specific, solving a problem or soliciting innovation through technology or other means.
This final blog of the series focuses on the different elements that are available for competitions in supplement to the competition types. Once a group has select a format or series of formats for their event, there are a number of other elements that need to be considered, all possibly boosting value for participants.
These are multi-track competitions, mentorship elements, combination events, and prizes.
Blog Series: Competition Types - Part III of IV
Welcome back! If you haven’t read any other parts in the series, I’d recommend starting with part one. When planning a business or innovation competitions, it’s always a good idea to understand the many different elements available, learning to assemble them in the way that best fits your goals.
In part two, we discussed higher involvement events, the business model competition and the classic business plan competition, both centered on more focused business development. The contemporary business model competition, centered around the business model canvas, is generally more accessible to multi-disciplinary entrepreneurs, and is more flexible in its application. The business plan competition is an old standard that still proves incredibly valuable to those looking to build an in depth look into the business side of launching a new idea.
Changing focus a little, the third blog in this series focuses on competition types that can be applied outside of the business context. A few ideas are an innovation competition, a case competition, and a hack-a-thon.
Why You Should Consider Competitions for Your Brands
PitchBurner started with a passion for building engagement in entrepreneurial competitions. Why? Because we identified competitions as being an awesome way to engage potential entrepreneurs, bringing all entrepreneurial stakeholders under one umbrella. They serve as a vessel for two way communication between an organization and their target market. They served as a way for a member of that market to chase their dreams, while engaging in a personal relationship with an organization.
Competitions as a Foundation for Business Creation
We frequently talk about the different benefits of entrepreneurship competitions. There are many, but when looking at the purpose behind many of these events, there is one that sticks out especially. What is the main focus of many entrepreneurship events? What is their purpose? Economic growth and support, along with providing opportunities for business creation. As such:
Competitions help entrepreneurs legitimize their business ideas.
Competitions are a perfect foundation for making a business idea a reality. Why? They bring together all of the parts that play a role in business creation.
Blog Series: Competition Types - Part II of IV
In the first blog of this series, I wrote about two of the lower involvement types of competitions, pitch and idea competitions. As mentioned, these events are fantastic on their own, but function even better as an addition to any other type of competition. They can also be applied to attract students of many different disciplines, enforcing the fact that entrepreneurship isn’t business specific.
In part two, I’m going to introduce you to two competition types that have a greater amount of involvement: the business model canvas competition and the classic business plan competition. These are especially important when the focus is business development and actualization.
Blog Series: Competition Types - Part I of IV
For organizations first approaching the idea of hosting a competition, there are many elements that need to be considered, often making the implementation of these events seem daunting. You know the value of running competitions, both for you and your audience. But what types of competitions can be hosted? What information do I need to collect? What would be the best type of competition for my audience? What other elements can I add to build engagement and value?
All of these questions are definitely valid. This process does not need to be difficult, nor does it have to be time consuming. In fact, it’s easy to deliver your audience a quality event in little to no time.
Solid Business Plans are Key to Competition and Professional Success
For competitors in business plan competitions, the business plan is the foundational piece that spells eventual success or failure in the competition. Regardless of how well you present yourself or how many connections you have, if your business plan isn’t cogent, thorough and articulate, odds are you won’t win or even place.
One of the biggest inconsistencies in business plans is the gap between the financial sections and the narrative sections.You may have believable financial statements and captivating narratives in your business plan, but if the numbers don’t support the text, your business plan may be easily passed over by investors. And believe us - they’ll check.
3 Steps to Running an Innovative Competition
You’re an administrator of an entrepreneurship organization and you’ve been tasked to head up a competition. Your team has identified the benefits of running a competition, such as:
- Competitions bring together all elements needed to give an entrepreneur a start
- Competitions build engagement and excitement in and around the programs
- Competitions provide incentive for sponsors to get involved
- Competitions build prestige around programs and involve major industry players
- Competitions help engage alumni networks
Of course it’s easy to point out the benefits of the overall program. But what about the actual implementation process? If you’ve never run a competition before, fear not. We’ve put together a few things to help in the brainstorming process.
Writing a Business Plan: An Adventure, Not A Job!
A well-crafted business plan is crucial to success in business plan competitions. And not just any well-crafted business plan; one that stands out from the crowd. For students in business schools, especially those in entrepreneurial tracks, creating such a plan is a huge part of their education. For everyone else, it’s a learned art that combines your passion for a business with the down-to-earth details involved in getting that business off the ground.
If you’re a wanna-be entrepreneur or student who has a great idea for a business and either wants to enter a business plan competition or find funding, here are some factors to consider as you craft a business plan.
9 Tips for Running a Photo or Video Contest
So you’re looking to run a photo or video contest. Perhaps you’ve never run one before (that’s totally okay!). We’re here to provide some helpful tips and tricks to running the most successful, ground-breaking photo/video contest ever.
5 keys to Marketing your Competition Effectively
If you are involved with organizing business plan, quick pitch, or new idea competitions, you know that it is not only a matter of getting all the pieces in place for an event but also getting excited entrepreneurs to show up. I have the opportunity to visit with hundreds of schools every month to find out about their events and, more importantly, what works and what fails. The list could extend far beyond the five mentioned below, but following these basic tips will improve attendance and get you more sponsors.
New to Business Plan Competitions? Here's Where To Start.
If you’re an entrepreneur or business-minded student seeking to enter the world of business plan competitions for the first time, don’t be surprised if you’re overwhelmed by all the
options. The sheer number of competitions, rules and deadlines can be confusing.
Here are some guidelines on how to make sense of the business plan competition universe, which is growing and evolving all the time.
Business Plan Competition Strategy 101
For many students and young entrepreneurs, competing in a business plan competition can be incredibly overwhelming. Often times, students are just hoping to get their business plan completed by the deadline. And if they manage to do that, they’re often just wishing to get through the presentation without embarrassing themselves; no strategy involved there.
Here’s 3 strategy tips we want to share with you to help you not only get through the business plan competition, but completely rock it.
Pitch Contests are Rapidly Gaining Popularity
Business plan competitions aren’t the only option available today for entrepreneurs seeking prizes, funding and the chance to get in front of venture capitalists within a competition framework. More and more competitions are becoming centered around an elevator pitch that gives the applicant the ability to spend a few brief minutes presenting their innovative idea to a panel of judges that often consists of investors and influential members of the entrepreneurial community.
An advantage to administering a quick pitch competition is that it can be easier to enter, organize, participate and judge than a typical business plan competition (though we aren’t knocking business plan competitions - we love them too). Basically, competitors have three minutes in front of a panel of judges to sell their idea. There is often an audience who can listen in on the pitches and propose questions, as well.
West Virginia University, in conjunction with the West Virginia Department of Education, is seeking to peak the interest of the youth across the state. To do so, they are running two business plan competitions: one for high schooler students, and one on the collegiate level. The goal of both event is to increase the drive for entrepreneurship and innovation.