Trust is key, especially when you’re trying to persuade a business to invest in your software solution. Sure, you could have a well-designed landing page with a short form and clear CTA, but without trust elements, there’s no credibility behind your offer.
One way to build that trust right on your landing page is with the awards your company has won. There’s a reason you’ve won those awards and your prospects deserve to know it! Show them why they should learn more about – and eventually buy – your product.
Here’s a list of awards you should consider applying for to use as trust elements on your landing pages. If you’ve already won them, make sure you’re proudly displaying their badges!
For 32 years, Inc. has been ranking the fastest-growing privately held companies in the United States. Starting with just the top 500, it expanded to rank 5000 companies in 2007. Inc. determines the rankings based on revenue growth over a three-year period.
To apply for 2015 (applications begin in late January), you must meet their qualifications:
- Have generated revenue by March 31, 2011
- Have generated at least $100,000 of revenue in 2011
- Have generated at least $2 million of revenue in 2014
- Be privately held, for profit, based in the U.S., and an independent company
Benefits of applying and potentially making the list include national recognition and media coverage, networking opportunities at industry events, and using the award to further your business as a sales and recruiting tool.
More information and FAQs can be found here.
The Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA), a trade organization for the software and digital content industries, presents the CODiE Award to “[recognize] excellence by honoring the software and information industry’s leading products and services.” For 29 years, the CODiE has been given to over 1,000 software and information companies, and is the only “peer-recognized program in the content, education, and software industries.”
There are three main category umbrellas to consider: Content Strategies, Software Categories, and Education Categories. Content covers awards like “Best Content Marketing Solution,” and “Best Service Using Aggregated Content.” Software awards include “Best Cloud Platform as a Service,” and “Best Open Source Innovation.” Education focuses on the learning industry, with awards from “Best Education Cloud-based Solution” to “Best Virtual Learning Solution.”
While this year’s application deadline has passed, it’s still a great award to keep in mind for next year. Finalists for 2015 are announced in March.
Described as “the world’s premier business awards,” The Stevie Awards honor the achievements of companies and professionals worldwide. There are six separate awards programs, each with its own categories, rules, and timeline:
- The American Business Awards
- The International Business Awards
- The Asia-Pacific Stevie Awards
- The German Stevie Awards
- The Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service
- The Stevie Awards for Women in Business
Depending on your company’s location, or which type of business you’re in, you can choose which program to apply to. Winning a Stevie brings your company national press coverage, and the organization will work with you to leverage the honor for promotional and business opportunities.
While not an official award, landing a spot on a Forbes list is still a huge honor. With 26 million unique visitors in January 2013, this online magazine is one of the most recognized brands in business media. Forbes publishes many lists covering a wide variety of topics, from sports to investing and finance. For software vendors, I would focus on the company-themed lists. These include:
- World’s Most Innovative Companies
- America’s Most Promising Companies
- Most Innovative Growth Companies
- Most Valuable Brands
Each has a different methodology on how the list is created, and Forbes explains it in a separate article from each list. Some are based on hard numbers, like earnings for Most Valuable Brands, while others are based on more subjective data, like the quality of management for America’s Most Promising Companies.
Since Forbes does most of the research, either on its own or with external reports, to be considered for one of their lists, I would recommend reaching out to the author of the list you feel your company should be on. Worst comes to worst, you don’t qualify based on their quantitative requirements, but at least you’ll have started a relationship with a Forbes contributor, which will benefit your PR strategy.
Like Forbes, Fortune’s most well-known honor is a list: the Fortune 500. Ranking the 500 top US companies by total revenue for the respective fiscal year, the Fortune 500 is referenced throughout the country as one of the top business rankings.
So if you make the list, don’t be shy! It’s a huge honor that will tell your prospects how valuable your company is, and that their investment in your product is secure and respected. However, since this list is based on hard numbers, there’s no way to make the list without being one of the top 500.
The Best in Biz Awards “honors companies, teams, executives and products for their business success in the current and previous year.” The awards cover three geographical regions: North America (US and Canada), EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa), and International. There are over 60 awards throughout five categories: Company, Department/Team, Executive, Product, and PR and Media. The awards are available in all three regions.
Best in Biz Awards prides itself on being “the only independent business awards program judged by members of the press and industry analysts.” Benefits of winning include:
- A feature on the Best in Biz Awards website, with your logo and links to your website
- Customized trophies (for select winners)
- Winner logos for use on the company website and other promotional materials
While the North American awards have already concluded for 2014, the International program will begin accepting applications on January 5th, 2015. The final day to apply is May 15th, and the winners will be announced on July 22nd.
R&D Magazine honors the top 100 technology products of the year with its annual award. Starting in 1963, The R&D Awards have recognized revolutionary new technologies, including the fax machine, the Nicoderm anti-smoking patch, and HDTV.
To qualify for 2015, your product must have been “first available for purchase or licensing between January 1, 2014, and December 31, 2014…the submitted entry must be in working, marketable condition.” Entries are judged by industry experts who must have no conflicts of interest with the entries. The deadline for the 2015 R&D 100 Awards is April 20, 2015.
InformationWeek publishes articles and stories from different business technology professionals. The InformationWeek Elite 100 is their ranking of the top innovators of technology. Originally the InformationWeek 500, the list “tracks the IT practices of the nation’s most innovative IT organizations, providing a unique opportunity to understand and examine the business practices of these firms across core areas of operations, including, technology deployment, IT budgets, business-technology infrastructure, and IT strategies.”
The deadline for the 2015 list is fast approaching – January 16th, 2015! To qualify, your company must:
- Show “technological, procedural, and organizational innovation”
- Earn an annual revenue of $250 million or more
If selected, winners are honored at the 2015 InformationWeek Conference and InformationWeek Awards Dinner and Gala in the spring and published in the 2015 InformationWeek Elite 100 digital issue.
Deloitte, best known for their accounting and financial services, also ranks the “the fastest growing technology, media, telecommunications, life sciences, and clean technology companies in North America.” For the 2014 awards, the percentage of growth is measured based on a company’s revenue from 2009 to 2013.
To qualify for the award, companies must:
- Have been in business at least five years
- Be headquartered in North America
- “Have fiscal year 2009 operating revenues of at least $50,000 USD or CD, and fiscal year 2013 operating revenues of at least $5 million USD or CD with a growth rate of 100 percentage or greater”
- Own technology that is sold to customers and contributes to a majority of the company’s revenue
This year’s awards have already been given, but based on last year’s timeline, the application for 2015 should start in late spring next year. Winners will receive a logo to use on their website and promotional materials, as well as an “Official Technology Fast 500” plaque. Deloitte also publishes a national press release announcing the winners.
The Top 20 Most Popular Software Solutions infographic series pulls together data from the top software products across various software industries, including CRM software, Project Management software, and Accounting software. Using the number of customers and users for each product, as well as their social presence, Capterra is able to rank the 20 most popular software solutions in each industry.
The “customers” data point accounts for the number of organizations that own the software, while the “users” data point looks at the total number of people using the software (e.g. one company has a product and three of their employees use it). Social data looks at the numbers for Twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, Klout, and reviews of the software product on Capterra. After compiling all the data, we use our own formula to calculate the rankings for the industry. Now, software buyers can start their search with a comprehensive view of the top players in the industry.
If you’re interested in being featured in our Top 20 series, click here to enter your product’s data.
What other B2B software awards have you applied for and/or won? Share your experiences in the comments below.