A Design Above The Rest

By Shannen Bulley

When it comes to presentation, there’s no right or wrong way to design an award entry – they come in all shapes and sizes, but how do you make yours stand out from the crowd?

Firstly, ensuring you follow and stick to the criteria is key. Each awards will have strict submission requirements to adhere to, including word-count, minimum number of images, forms to fill out and suggested ways to present all of this information. It’s also well worth considering your mode of submission, whether it be simply uploading a word or PDF document online or printing, binding and posting to the judges.  Make sure to fully study the criteria and what’s expected of your award before you start – this is extremely important and saves a lot of valuable time!

When designing an award, you need to instantly catch the readers eye and ensure the content and layout is engaging to impress the judges. Keep things consistent by using existing development branding, company logos, fonts and tone of voice. Brochures are the perfect place to start. Elements of the design can be used to elevate your award, leaving a lasting impression on judges and differentiating you from the other entries and your competition.

Although the text is extremely important and should adhere to any word-count, good photography can make or break an entry. Most awards state a minimum number of images required, in order to give the judges a clear picture and overview of the development, house or company. Photography is absolutely vital and works just as hard as the text to convey your key messages. Before you start, ensure you have a good selection of high-quality and high-res external and internal images to best showcase the product.

Key hero images should be placed strategically throughout the award design to illustrate each page of corresponding text, working in harmony with one another. Detailed inset shots will set your entry apart, highlighting and bringing the text to life. The aim is to leave a lasting impression whilst presenting the information in the most concise and engaging way possible.

Regional awards tend to be shorter and have a page limit. Sometimes they may require you to simply fill out a form and answer a variety of questions within a word-count, with images uploaded to a USB or disc, so designing isn’t necessary. However, if you want to stand out from your competitors, you may want to consider a designed PDF to support your entry.