Top Tips on entering awards: A step-by-step guide

Writing an award entry can seem like a daunting task, especially if this is your first time applying.

So, where do you start? What do you need to include and what’s going to make you stand out from the crowd?

Here’s a step-by-step guide to entering, and what not to miss!

A step-by-step guide

1) Which category will you enter?

Have a look at the categories and choose which of them best suits your business. You can enter more than one category, but you will need to complete an entry form for each one. You can see all 16 categories here.

2) Register

Decided which category you are entering? Great! The next step is to start your entry by registering your details here. You can log back in any time after you have registered to update your application and save your progress. Take your time to think about the questions and how they apply to you, there is no rush.

3) Entering is easy

We have made the entry form as straightforward as possible. There are just a few questions and a word limit to stick to. We also really welcome pictures showcasing what you do and/or videos to support your entry. Entering the British Farming Awards is completely free.

4) We’re looking for innovation!

We know agriculture faces an ongoing number of challenges – not least those we are experiencing today – and most problems can be addressed by innovation. It’s not about being the biggest or the best, but instead thinking how farmers have found new and better ways of getting things done, improving processes, seeing an issue and rectifying it with measured success.

5) What’s your story?

You can make entering easier by thinking about the story of your business. How did it begin and why? What challenges have you overcome? Where is your business heading? We want to know the background, the thinking, the process, the execution and the results.

It has to have a beginning, a middle and an end, and it is probably a tale of something being improved. Ensure you can tell the story simply so the judges will be able to instantly grasp what you’re trying to put across.

6) Find your stand out achievement

Always be on the lookout for great examples of achievements you can include and make your entry stand out to the judges. Have you increased profit or customer numbers? Have you found a gap in the market? Focus on what makes your business unique. Analysis, sales, turnover and profit figures speak for themselves and are not subjective.

7) Support your story with evidence

All figures and evidence are kept completely confidential and only shared with our judging panel. Always try to evidence your story with figures where you can, whether that be through farm data, performance figures or pricing and financial information, though testimonials are also appreciated.

8) Follow the questions carefully

Make sure you answer each question clearly, giving all the information you think would be beneficial to gain an overall view of your business.

The entry form is structured to lead on from each question so careful, considered answers to each question will ensure the judges see your story and your highlighted achievements.

9) Spell it out and keep it simple

Focus on the question with your answer, not just what you want to say. Make sure your entry is clear, easy to understand and gives all the information needed.

Structure your entry. Describe the challenge, the actions and the outcome. Be consistent, logical and tell a story. Creating a narrative can help keep the judges’ attention.

10) Put yourself in the judges’ shoes

If you were reading your entry as a judge, would you understand the business, what your achievements are and how you got there?

Need a helping hand?

Hopefully the above tips and tricks will help you feel more prepared to apply. However, if you ever need help choosing the right category to enter, what to include in your entry, writing your entry or if you just want some impartial advice, feel free to contact the team on marketing@britishfarmingawards.co.uk or call 01772 799 423.

And if at first you don’t succeed…

Don’t be put off if you have entered before and did not win. Every year we encourage past entrants to try again, because a lot can change in a year! The exposure gained from your business being shortlisted or winning could take your enterprise to a whole new level. Good luck!