Don’t Be Afraid to Toot Your Own Horn — and LOUDLY!

By Rich Lindblom

I happened to be checking out a BrandSource dealer friend of mine’s website recently and I noticed something that caught my eye … though just barely.

It was a small banner with tiny type that simply said BrandSource Dealer of the Year.  That’s it. No pictures, no ribbons, no hype.

Well, the first thing I did was call my dealer friend and suggest they move their accolade out of the shadows. (They did.)

Let’s be real folks. The odds are pretty good that no one else is going to toot your horn for you, so you need to do it for yourself. 

If your company has won an award (or even been nominated for one that’s significant), then that is something that is worth sharing.  It doesn’t matter the size of the accolade; what matters is that you were recognized as being the best at something, and if you ask me, the people in your market area need to know that.

I get it, some of you are shy about tooting your own horns.  Well, you need to get over it! Here are three good reasons why you need to let the people who live and work around you know about your achievements: 

  1. Most important, it’s a feel-good story.  Nothing delivers a more powerful and longer-lasting message than a true feel-good story.
  2. It shows people you are a winner, and people want to do business with a winner.  It validatestheir decision to do business with your company.
  3. Awards and recognition instill asense of pride in your employees. It makes them want to work for your company, and it could potentially attract new workers as well.

I’d be willing to bet that the vast majority of BrandSource dealers have won a whole bunch of different awards over the years.  After all, we’re the cream of the crop, the best in class in our industries and we do things the right way, which naturally leads to awards of one sort or another. 

There are an endless number of different awards a dealer can win:  BrandSource Dealer of the Year, local community awards, regional newspaper awards, Chamber of Commerce awards, service organization awards, design competitions, leadership awards, sales organization awards, charitable organization awards — the list goes on and on. 

But don’t just limit it to your company, what about your staff?  If one of your employees wins an award, for heaven’s sake, let people know about it! Let your employees know that you are proud of them.

So how do you promote it?  How do you let people know you won an award? 

  1. The very first place to start is your website. Say it loud and proud all over your online store.  Personally, if my company was named a BrandSource Dealer of the Year, I’d make it a focal point of my homepage. 
  2. Next, I’d go straight to social media:  Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Twitter, and anything else you can think of.  It’s free and it’s effective.  Run multiple posts over an extended period of time. 
  3. Talk to your local newspaper, radio or TV station.  They are always looking for good human-interest stories and this is a great opportunity to get some free and powerful advertising.
  4. How about in your store?  Get a banner printed up and hang it on your wall, or better yet outside your store.  Perhaps you have a photo of the award ceremony that you can blow up, frame and hang.  If the local newspaper runs a story, have that professionally framed and proudly displayed on the wall as well.
  5. And finally, call it out in every one of your ads.  Let the world know that you are the kind of place where people want to do business.

As I said at the beginning, no one else is going to do it for you, so there’s nothing wrong with singing your own praises.  Better yet … Shout it from the rooftops for everyone to hear!

I have three goals in mind with my columns: To motivate, educate and entertain.  If I have achieved at least one of those, then I’ve done my job. Don’t be shy about letting me know if you agree. Write me at

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