By Jessica Price, Senior Associate

Award show season is upon us with the Golden Globes, Oscars and Grammys all airing in the coming months. While we might not get another infamous Oscars selfie from 2014, it will be a season to remember as shows pivot amid the coronavirus pandemic. As Hollywood looks for new ways to celebrate, so too will top consumer outlets.

Every year, publications look for trendsetting companies to pave the way with the best products in the market. From food and beverage to health and beauty, these trailblazing products are recognized through outlet-specific award programs. Winning an award from these magazines places your product on a pedestal above the rest. It provides third-party validation to consumers, which has the potential to drive purchase consideration and trial.

The past year has been anything but ordinary, so getting media attention requires you really stand out among your peers this award season. To properly secure your product’s place, follow our top five steps to developing an award-winning submission.

Do your research.

The first step may be the most important — conduct proper research of all outlets in your product’s industry. Where is your target audience reading about products? Who do they trust when it comes to trying new food and clean beauty products? Consider which publications reach your target audience, achieve your objectives, and are most valuable to key stakeholders.

Narrow it down.

With so many awards out there, focus on what makes your product unique. Determine what niche classification makes the most sense. The more specific, the better.

Our favorites? The prestigious PEOPLE Food Awards, the natural ingredient-focused Clean Beauty Awards and the delectable Eat This, Not That! Food Awards.

Check out previous winners.

In this case, focusing on the past isn’t a bad thing. Look at prior year’s award winners and what made them stand out. Who covered them? What reporters were writing about them? Take notes. Chances are they did something memorable to get the right people talking.

Assemble nomination qualifications.

The outlet will have requirements so you should start an asset list as soon as possible. Keep an organized list of items needed including product images, nutrition labels, ingredients, and more. Most important? The timing. Allow enough time for materials to be gathered, reviewed, and submitted in an orderly fashion. Send samples in a timely manner if needed for consideration.

If qualifications are not listed online, be sure to determine which reporters are most appropriate to contact for more information.

After you’ve submitted everything needed, the waiting begins.

Consult with a pro.

Congratulations! Your product has been recognized by your top outlet of choice, but the effort shouldn’t stop there.

Working with an expert is crucial to properly promote your well-deserved award. Seek out previous winners, chat with industry insiders and consider reaching out to an agency that submits awards on behalf of clients as a profession. This team of experts can help determine which channels of communication are best, whether it be developing and distributing a press release or boosting the award on social media. Consider adding the honor to the product page on your website or even in your company’s email signature.

As a leading consumer PR agency, we’re up to any challenge that award season may bring. Do you have an award-worthy product you want to submit for consideration? We’re all ears.