Creating Your Oscar-nominated Business

Do you run your business like you want to get an Oscar nomination and win?  Do you go all out in order to win over the competition?  Honestly, I don’t always do that, but watching the Oscars made me think about it.  Every year, there are a slew of awards shows and the Oscars is the culmination of a fantastic movie season.  (I’ve always wondered why the culmination comes in March and not December, but that’s their season!)  What is your season?  Do you have a seasonal business, or one that has a build towards a climactic event? The Oscars is a great event to mimic. 

Here’s what top movie houses do to make sure that they are seen at their major event and you can do the same:

Marketing, Marketing, Marketing.  Not every type of marketing costs money.  We, as small business owners, always think about marketing and money in the same sentence; however, with all the social media channels today, you can certainly be very cost effective with your marketing.

  • Talk showsHelp a Reporter Out (HARO) literally gives you free requests for marketing opportunities including talk shows.  Sign up for it.
  • Billboards – you see the latest movie advertised on every billboard.  Check out the cost of putting your business on smaller, neighborhood billboards – they don’t have to be in Times Square.  You will still get eyeballs from bus stop signage or a car driving around town with your business’ name.
  • Theatre Screens – I saw ads for the Oscars all the time when I was watching a movie – advertise your business on movie screens in your local or regional market.
  • Charity event appearances – Celebrities with movies are at every charity event in town…and you can be the celebrity for your business.
  • Social media – use it to announce business events to friends and clients and encourage their participation.  Additionally, announce events or key milestones for other businesses as well.
  • Have Pre-Showings (trade shows) – every movie has a trailer.  Participate in trade shows and consider it your trailer.  It’s your chance to give a peak potential clients at your product or service.

Practice Your Presentation.  Ellen DeGeneres is great at impromptu events but we are not all that blessed.  When you have to present to a client, practice.  It’s OK to use notes (cue cards) but don’t read verbatim.  And even with practice, know that mistakes can happen.  Even though John Travolta went to rehearsal and practiced, he still mispronounced Idina Menzel’s name – which also became a big social media event.

Say Thank You – every winner thanked the little people who helped them to get to that point.  We need to thank our team for helping us be and stay successful.  We need to show appreciation of our clients and supporters as well.

Scheduling.  The Oscars hold their event when nothing else is happening in town and that is THE event on everyone’s calendar.  You can do the same with your scheduling.

Celebrate!  There are pre and post-Oscars parties.  They celebrate the ending of a grueling year.  Do you celebrate your experiences with your team?  Start planning a summer BBQ or Christmas party now to show appreciation of their efforts.

Success doesn’t happen overnight and sometimes we have to create our own success.  And know that even when we put in all the work, we might not win “Business of the Year,” but we’ve moved our business along the continuum that will get us there. If we want our businesses to be in the “Best xxx” category, we must create opportunities to make it so.