Earning a spot on 50Pros means your firm is doing something right, so congratulations! There are plenty of advantages that come with making a "Top Firms" list, whether it is on 50Pros or elsewhere, so it is important that you extract the maximum amount of juice from it, that go beyond simply getting recognized & showcased on a list. Below are our 4 recommendations with actionable items that you should do when you make any coveted list or win an industry award.
There is a phrase I learned during college - "The most expensive thing in business is...a one-time customer." Unfortunately, many companies or agencies often forget about their existing customers in pursuit of getting new ones. It is critical to continue nurturing your relationship with existing customers - and a key way to do this is by reminding them that they made the right decision in hiring or partnering with your agency in the first place, as exemplified by your outstanding work in the market that's getting noticed. Whether you get TV time, listed as a top firm, interviewed in a magazine, or winning an award, this presents a perfect opportunity to tell your existing customers what incredible work you're doing so they feel confident knowing they hired you, which will lead to a higher likelihood of working together again in the future.
The industry that has perfected this strategy is the luxury groups, who continuously like to remind (and more importantly - assure) their past & existing wealthy clientele why they made the right choice so they can keep the "dream" alive.
Here's a little-known fact: companies pay JD Power, a consumer intelligence & award-giving company, on average between $100,000 and $200,000 for awards. Of course, the recipient needs to have met specific requirements to even be considered, but it comes with a price tag. So why do companies rush at the opportunity to pay such a high cost for the award? Simply put: it is a powerful 3rd-party endorsement that can be leveraged to increase sales.
Your trophy, whether digital or physical, should be put high and proud so that your future customers can see the kind of credibility you have ascertained in your category and industry, which helps to remove those trust barriers with "strangers".
Examples of places you can show off the award or badge:
If you're in a position where you are looking for investors or wanting to raise cash, these recognitions could be critical as part of your fundraising efforts. Similar to how customers are looking for validation to proceed being a customer that doesn't come directly from you, investors and banks often seek external validation to see what others are saying about you. For example, when you make a "Top 50 Firms" list, some caution is alleviated from the prospective investors and there may be a higher likelihood of them giving you some cash.
For example, in the tech startup world, companies that get recognized on TechCrunch will often get their phones blowing up with investors who want to get a piece of the action. In addition, such as the Inc. list - "As soon as that issue of Inc. came out, I probably got a hundred different inquiries via email from new investors who wanted to get on the phone and talk to us," says Rachel Tipograph, Founder and CEO of MikMak.
If you won an award or recognition and nobody is around to hear it, did you really win it? Ramp up those (metaphorical) print presses because people need to know about it -- and who better than journalists and the media, who in turn will be able to distribute you & your firm to their large audiences.
Our favorite example of this is when an agency in a non-major city uses their award to demonstrate to a local TV station or newspaper how that city can be a "hub" for a particular industry and is gaining momentum. Fun & light interviews usually ensue that generate free publicity for that firm.
Of course, you should not aimlessly issue press releases since most people don't care (yes, it's the unfortunate truth) and may be wasted money, but be strategic in how you might incorporate a specific award to generate some media buzz.
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