An awards program can be a great way to get new business leads and contacts, boost your brand, and, if you make it paid — bring in revenue. How much revenue, however, is contingent on multiple factors, one of them being your submission rate. And while marketing might be the go-to answer for how to get more submissions and revenue, there is a simple change in your awards management process that can help you significantly lift both with minimum effort. Sounds too good to be true? Read on to see how it works.
Before we dive into the nitty-gritty, let’s take a look at the traditional awards submission process. Generally, when you set up an awards program with an entry fee, you can expect the following to happen, regardless of the contest administration software you use (if any):
In an ideal world, people would submit all the entries they intend to but in reality, everything is left for the last moment, then life happens, and many entries are never submitted and by implication — never paid. This results in a loss of potential revenue for the awards organizer. Let’s face it — while awards have multiple benefits for both organizers and entrants, submitting an entry for an awards competition is not always a top priority and can easily get sidelined in the case of a business emergency.
So, how do you turn planned submissions into actual ones, and more importantly, how do you monetize intention? This is where the simple hack comes in — ask your entrants for payment at registration, rather than when they submit for judging or later. The efficiency of this strategy is predicated on 2 factors:
As you can see, the effect of requesting payment at registration is two-fold, which enhances the impact on your program, resulting in a better registrations-to-submissions ratio. Or in other words, this specific change can help you get ahead both in terms of revenue and submissions with practically no effort on your part.
Still not sure? We have seen how this works in practice. Since Evalato’s settings allow payment at registration, at submission, and after submission, we have a unique point of observation of how these scenarios play out in terms of submission rates.
So, we examined 1000+ awards programs to find out if you should ask for payment at registration or at submission to increase both your revenue and submission rate. The results were pretty conclusive:
Our research covered programs with a minimum average entry value of $50, programs with at least 50 entries, and programs with an overall income of at least $20,000.
So, while no two awards programs are the same, Evalato’s statistics point to a difference of at least 25% in submission rates, depending on when you ask for payment. Additionally, the higher the price, the more significant the difference in submissions and revenue is between the two payment options.
Case in point — Eventex Awards, which traditionally charges entry fees at the registration stage, achieved an unprecedented 99% submission rate for its 13th edition, thanks to Evalato.
While a lot goes into charging entry fees for your awards, asking for payment at registration is a surefire way to maximize both revenue and submissions. That is why we recommend it too, and as seen above, we have the data to prove it. The best part? Evalato makes it possible with a simple tweak. That, coupled with Evalato’s embeddable registration form which keeps people on your website, creates a seamless experience for your applicants, boosting conversions and ultimately — your bottom line.