NRF Annual Awards 2019

Tips for writing a winning NRF Annual Award entry…

Get the ball gowns ready and the tuxedos dusted off, the NRF Annual Awards 2019 are just a few months away. With the application closing date looming (13th September) here are some tips that may help you to tell your story, showcase your achievements, and gain recognition for all your hard work for the year gone by.

We’ve listened to past judges, to get you the best tips and guidance on how to write a winning entry.

So before you begin to write take a minute to consider the following!


The introduction should set the stage for the rest of your entry. It should hook the judges in and make them enthusiastic to read the rest of the application. This is an opportunity to make you memorable and to stand out from the rest.

Answering the Questions

Carefully read each question and see which ones have the most marks allocated. Answer all the questions and ensure you are answering what has been asked to achieve the highest score.  Remember this is a numbers game, the highest score wins.

To help you stay on track put down the main points you want to address for each question. You can then elaborate and expand on each point. Most of the judges will not know your agency, or how great it is, therefore, you have to ensure that your answers explain why you deserve to win.

A winning entry will be engaging and memorable. Showcase your achievements and back them up with testimonials. Remember testimonials validate what you are saying and will give you added credibility.

Stick to the word count and try not to lose the reader in a sea of text. Where possible use logo’s, photos etc., to make the submission more memorable, but be cautious…embedded text will add to the word count.

Always write in plain English and avoid jargon, especially that which is used internally, that way nothing gets lost in translation. If the judges don’t understand what it means they cannot mark you accordingly.

DO NOT INCLUDE WEBSITE LINKS – Other than the online award all judges mark submissions in hard copy. They do not access links no matter how great you tell them the information on it is.

If you are submitting an application for an individual you should inform them and get their input, this helps to personalise it for the individual.


Your closing statement should capture the passion you feel for your company and why you should win. Remember the judges are reading hundreds of entries so you need to convince them as to why it should be you.

Finally, before you press submit, print your application form to make sure it is laid out as you want it and most importantly proof read it!



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