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.
The Benefits of Utilizing a Fan Vote in Your Competition
While many competitions are simply judged by a panel of experienced professionals in many areas of business, science, technology and beyond, some competitions choose to utilize a “fan vote” to help decide the winner of their event. You may be wondering, “Why would I do that when I already have such a great group of judges?” But we urge you to consider opening your competition to the public for their perspective on your applicants’ submissions.
Here’s a few reasons why:
Types of Events Your Organization May Want to Run
Every organization specializes in something unique. Therefore, it is necessary that they run an event that is just as specialized as they are. These events are run as a way to highlight organizations, along with their product and goals, by showcasing others and pulling at the heart strings. When an organization is thinking about running an event, there are a few things that they should consider considering:
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.
How to Write a Business Plan
Most everyone in the entrepreneurial world knows OF a business plan. They know that it is important and something that, to be successful, one must be able to not only possess, but also reference and explain when presenting to investors. It seems like a scarily-important document and many quake at the thought of beginning its creation process.
When you get down to the bare bones of it, a business plan is only comprised of these seven elements:
- Executive Summary
- Business Description
- Market Analysis
- Competitive Analysis
- Design and Development Plan
- Operations and Management Plan
- Financial Factors
Let’s break these down even further:
Award Programs Come in Many Different Forms
Here at Reviewr, we love when a local community is engaged through an awesome awards program. However, it can be difficult to recognize the potential for an awards program to run in your area. We’re here to help you run an awards program that engages and, you guessed it, awards the noteworthy people in your community.
Even with the common goal of recognizing local businesses, people, etc. in the area, awards programs come in many different shapes and sizes.
Here are just a few:
4 Tips for Making Your One-and-Done Event Into a Yearly Competition
Planning an event takes a lot of work and, often times, event administrators are so busy planning the logistics of the first year that they forget to take the necessary steps to make the event a repeatable model for success to be used year after year. We're here to tell you how to keep your participants engaged in your event year-round so that, when next year rolls around, you'll have a long list of people dying to see your event begin again.
- Utilize a post-event save-the-date page
- Set up a form to collect inerested applicant/judge information for next year
- Start marketing your event at least 3 months ahead of time
- Provide updates on past winners
Feedback is Important for You & Your Applicants
One of the things that makes a competition so great is the opportunity it gives applicants to receive critical feedback on their ideas. While offering numerical scores in your competition is beneficial in its own right, actual written feedback gives your applicants so much more than a score on a piece of paper. It gives them to opportunity to grow as individuals and to build a strong network of entrepreneurial experts they can consult for professional and personal development.
Giving feedback to your applicants is good for you, the administrator, as well. You build credibility within your organization by showing that you genuinely care about promoting the entrepreneurial spirit through taking the time to offer valuable comments on the ways your applicants can improve and it prevents arbitrary scoring by your judges since they have to validate their numerical scoring with their non-numerical feedback.
We’ll elaborate a little bit more. Feedback is great because:
Why Competitions are Great for Economic Development
Competitions create a great number of benefits for a multitude of reasons for a variety of different people. However, running a competition can be particularly beneficial for organizations seeking to improve their local community, such as economic development agencies and chambers of commerce. Ultimately, you’re looking for a way to help your local community and its people flourish. Here’s how it can be done through a well-executed competition:
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.
Common Mistakes Award Programs Run Into
Award programs are a wonderful way to increase economic development, boost awareness of local businesses and highlight those in your area that are making big moves. However, even program administrators who have been running their event for years can make mistakes!
Keep your program on an upward spiral by avoiding these four major award program flaws:
Why Internet Form Builders are Not Ideal Tools for Your Competition
Form-builders and form dumps that can be found on the internet, though seemingly convenient and inexpensive, often do more detriment than good when it comes to creating your world-class competition, contest or award program.
Though you may think you’re getting off with a bargain, the corners a cheap form-builder cuts can have a lasting negative impact on applicants, the submission form itself, judges, mentors, and even your credibility.
How to Keep People in Your Program Year-Round
Let's be honest, events take a lot of work. Whether they are competitions, contests, or award programs, there are a lot of processes involved in making an event happen. And guess what? Events don't just last for 3-6 months! Most events are, and should be, a year-round commitment. They take year-round dedication if you want to get the most out of it. So once you have finished the event for this year, you need to jump right back in to prepare for the next upcoming event. At PitchBurner, we have a few different ways to aid your year long process, from planning and the initial set up, to finishing out with judging and giving feedback & awards.
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.