The SPARKies Awards 2020 nominations are set to close in just one week – you’ve only got until Friday 12th to get it done. Should you nominate yourself? Who else in the region is totally killing it? We’ve put together some handy tips on how to make an award-winning nomination so that you and those you support stand out to our judges.

1. Make sure they’re in the region

The SPARKies have opened things up a bit this year so that we can celebrate even more brilliant individuals and companies in the cluster. That said, there has to be cut off.

Read more about the SPARKies Awards 2020 qualifying region.

2. Check they meet other qualifying criteria

Most of our awards are open to all, but a few of them have specific criteria you need to meet. To qualify for the FutureSPARK award your nominee needs to be aged 25 or under, for the Best Startup award the business needs to be 3 years old or less, Scaleups need to have more than 10 employees or a turnover of £1 million or more. Lastly, the Most Exemplary use of VR or AR award requires that the product was created between January 2019 – April 2020 and been made available to the public.

3. Identify where they stand out

Handing in a name and a website to our judges isn’t going to cut it. Really think about what your nominee is doing that stands out. Whether that means absolutely smashing it in big data or just totally killing it all-round, give our judges a reason to take you seriously. tell us what your nominee is doing, and why it’s impressive.

4. Take time on your nomination

Really think about what you’re going to say, the last thing you want is to be struggling to articulate your case on the last day of nominations (June 12). Use the time you have to gather your thoughts and position your success persuasively.

What truly marks out the year for you? What have you done or achieved that is so much better than you’d expected, or had done last year, or is better than your competitors?

5. Imagine you’re a judge

Seriously, you’ve got a ton of nominations to contend with. The only thing you can do is take each one on its own merit. No matter how much industry knowledge you have if someone submits a nomination that says nothing but ‘we’ve been doing really well this year’, you be putting it at the top of the pile.

Give our judges a good 300 words on why all your hard work deserves to be recognised.

6. Detail your work

As we’ve said, a strong nomination details why you’ve decided to submit and what you’ve been doing – in detail. A couple of our awards, though, give you the chance to be more specific. The Best Digital Design award, for example, gives you space to outline exactly what you went through to create the design/campaign. Use it.

7. Talk to your community

If you think you, or somebody else, really deserves a SPARKie Award then talk to the people around you. Your colleagues, your friends in the industry, your staff, even. Tell them what you’re doing and how to nominate.

Which is to say, they can do it from this page. Or at the bottom of this page.

8. Use Twitter to build support

Go wider. If you believe someone (including yourself) deserves an award, get out on social media and say so! Tag in @techSPARKuk #theSPARKies and start a conversation. How often do you get to talk about how brilliant you are?

Find us on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

9. Sign up for our newsletter

We’ll be keeping everyone on our mailing list updated about the process and how things are going for The SPARKies Awards 2019.

You’ll find our newsletter sign-up form at the bottom of the page.