5 Ways to Toot Your Own Horn—Because No One Else Will

by Michelle Salater on March 10, 2010

I’m often criticized for not sharing on my website or blog the awards that Sumèr and I have received. My answer: I don’t know why; I just don’t. Not a good answer, I know. And, yes, I know I should publicize my achievements better. (I’m trying…check out my Social Sightings page) .

As a web copywriter, I’ve come across company owners who are also reluctant to spread the good news when they win a business award or recognition for their achievements. Just like me, they don’t publicize the fruits of their labors nearly as often as they should.

Why is that?

Are we modest, or are we publicity shy? Perhaps, but more often it’s simply because we don’t know how to brag about themselves. I know this is my situation; I have no problem spreading the good word when it comes to my clients.

The bottom line is this: Companies that win awards or that are recognized stand to bring in more business by boasting about how great they are. Business success attracts more success—and attracts clients.

So, how does a company toot its own horn without going overboard? Here are five easy ways to get the word out:

1. Publish a press release. Press releases can be a priceless tool to attract clients. The main thing to remember is that your press release needs to be timely and newsworthy. For example, winning business awards for graphic design is newsworthy. Make sure you distribute a release within a week or two of the award so it’s timely.

2. Share the bounty. Did your printing company pass the million-page mark? Celebrate by having a special for clients. Offer them a gift if they join you for cake on Friday at 3 pm, or announce a month-long discount on printing. If you know a few weeks in advance that you’re nearing that millionth page, have a contest guessing the hour you print that magical page. The winner gets his or her next project printed for free. The possibilities are endless.

3. Write a small report and make it go viral. If you’ve been recognized by an industry group for your work, write a short report on how you made it happen. Give the nitty-gritty details of your business success, and make sure that contact information and links to your site appear throughout the report.

Then publish it and share it for free. Send it to your email list and encourage people to read it and send it on. Give it to those who have related, noncompeting companies and encourage them to use it as a freebie for their clients. Put it on your blog or on your site as a free download with an announcement of your accomplishments. Brainstorm ways to get it into as many hands as possible.

4. Boast online. Send a quick broadcast email to your list with the announcement. Put up some information about the award on Facebook. Tweet it. Digg your press release. Splash a big, bright message on your website, and then Stumble it.

5. Throw a party. If cake on Friday afternoon doesn’t seem like an appropriately grand celebration, go all out and throw a party. Advertise the party to those people you want to see, especially current or prospective clients. Who’s going to turn down a party? Alert the media. Have guest speakers or maybe a band. It’s your call. After all, you’re the star of the show.

Use your imagination and come up with more ideas. You could combine these ideas or come up with new ones. Anything that gets your name out there in a positive light is great for company.

If you like this post, you might also like:

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  2. Top 5 Ways to Know If Your Homepage Copy Is Self-Centered
  3. Redefining the Way Businesses Gain Exposure
  • Nora D. Richardson
    Okay Michelle, I will poke around a bit.
  • Nora, I think it should be more about a company being a right fit rather than the number of awards, but people like to hear this stuff. Example: there's a blogger I write for off and on and his Tweets have been mentioned in the NY Times. Big deal, right? Not to me. I think it's amazing to be working with someone who is twitter famous. It's human nature.
    I would LOVE to know if there's a study done on this. Why don't you research and write about it and then guest blog about it!
  • Nora D. Richardson
    Really great thought provoking ideas. I, too, find it excruciatingly hard to boast about my company and its successes/achievements. I think these are great ways to get your business name out to people without seeming egotistical. But do people/companies REALLY care about award winners and mile-markers? Shouldn't it be more about a company being the right fit for an individual or a company--not the number of awards decorating the walls (and egos)? I wonder if there has been a study of this? hmmm.

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