The award goes to…

By Cliff Moore, Account Director, Deep South Media


We all like winning awards – it’s flattering, it builds self-esteem, enhances reputations and is good for business.

It is something to shout about, to celebrate; it’s motivational and adds kudos.

What is not to like?

Plenty, it seems.

An acquaintance’s business recently received an email informing them that they were award winners.

Indeed, that they had been judged the best in their field in the UK in 2016.

It was an interesting message as they had neither entered nor actually even heard of the award in question.

Of course, it should be pointed out that there is nothing illegal going on here.

The email went on to offer a list of ‘opportunities’ available to the award winners.

These opportunities included the chance to buy space in a one-off magazine dedicated to the award winners – at a cost of up to £5,000.

Oh, and this magazine would be online only, but there would be every possibility of arranging for copies to be printed – at a cost, of course.

This magazine package would include a trophy – or trophies if you coughed up enough cash – but any extra ones would have to be bought, with P&P charged. But don’t worry because discounts were available on multiple orders.

So there we have it – a random award win that costs you money to announce in an online publication produced by the people handing out the awards.

An award that wasn’t entered and one presumably judged by persons unknown (or probably a panel of unnamed ‘industry experts’).

One wonders how many businesses were contacted in such a way.

It is rather like the awards equivalent of vanity press where you self-publish your book because no publisher is interested.

No one will read your self-published book because it really has little credibility, but you can call yourself an author and enjoy your delusions of grandeur.

Here, however, you win a random award that means nothing to anyone but yourself and the people establishing and monetizing the whole thing – who are presumably just attempting to earn a crust themselves.

You can call yourself a winner, but who cares?

Or you can ignore the whole thing and get on with your work, knowing that the best reward for doing a good job is respect from your peers and competitors and a full order book.

That’s what I call an award.

Real awards do not come out of the blue – entries need considerable time, effort and research.

Deep South Media has an admirable track record in producing awards entries for multiple clients across a whole range of sectors which have resulted in national and regional wins for them.

One business even directly attributes gaining new work worth £200,000 with the winning of an award from an entry put together by us.

My advice therefore, for what it’s worth, is check awards carefully for they are not always what they seem, but participate if you want to – it’s your money.