Business contests are a great way to get needed visibility for a new start up, gain recognition for your hard work, or even win cash and prizes. Business contests target companies and entrepreneurs in all shapes and forms- there are contests for large businesses, start-up ideas, and women entrepreneurs.
Spring is the prime contest season- most applications are due by the beginning of the summer for 2009 awards. Here are some of the best upcoming contests- act quick, deadlines are approaching fast!
For Growing Businesses:
Inc. Magazine is looking for the 5,000 fastest growing businesses- those who began operations prior to 2005 and have grown to generate over $2m in revenue by 2008. The Inc. Magazine contest winners will be invited to a the nationally recognized 500/5000 conference to hear expert speakers, network with business greats, and glean the knowledge and skills necessary to grow your business even further. Winners are featured in a future issue of Inc. and are highlighted as award recipients on the Inc. website.
Deadline: May 22.
For Smaller Businesses:
Those who are still working toward the $2m goal but have at least $500,000 in revenue under their belt are eligible to apply for the Entrepreneur Magazine Small Business Contest. Like the Inc. contest, winners are highlighted on the magazine’s website and in a future print issue. Check out the website for additional requirements.
Deadline: June 15th.
For Great Entrepreneurs:
The deadline for one of the most prestigious business awards, the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year, is fast approaching. Accounting and Consulting firm Ernst and Young awards this honor annually, considering business owners across several different industry categories. See the 2009 contest rules for more details.
Specifically for Women:
The Make Mine a Million $ Business contest is part contest, part race to the finish line- the finish being $1m in sales for your company. The M3 contest/race, sponsored by Count Me In, tracks participant process online. Sometimes just entering is winning enough- most participants see at least 40% sales growth over the course of the contest. Women-owned businesses across 15 categories are eligible to enter. Prizes include a cash award, discounted and free services, and of course, the satisfaction of hitting the $1m mark in sales.
Deadline: See website for details.
All business owners have faced a challenge at one time or another, right? Why not share your experience, and win prizes to boot? The Business.com “What Works for Business” contest invites business owners to share their own story of a challenge they’ve overcome: whether you hired a web designer to fix an outdated site or designed your own online marketing strategy, other entrepreneurs can benefit from the lessons you learned. Monthly winners are named based on submissions.
Deadline: End of May
For New Businesses:
Want to test out your business idea? The Ideablob.com monthly contest is just the place. Online voters decide on the monthly winner based on a short description of your business idea. With the $10,000 award, you can purchase inventory, equipment (such as a credit card terminal) or business software.
Deadline: End of May