So you think you’re a top-notch study abroad organization, one that is worthy—and absolutely deserving—of some affirmation and love from industry professionals and students? We think so, too! Now let’s mobilize the masses to get your organization the top number of votes.
Keep scrolling to learn how to get your friends, family, colleagues, and network to vote for you for the 2018 People’s Choice Award.
What is the People’s Choice award, exactly? Is it different than other Innovation Awards?
Here’s how we like to explain the awesomeness of this award:
“This award honors the top international education organization as selected by study abroad professionals and students. The top five finalists in this category are chosen by study abroad advisers from colleges and universities. Once these finalists have been announced, students will have the opportunity to vote online for their favorite organization. The winner will be determined by popular vote from the GoAbroad community at large.”
So yes—it is different than other GoAbroad Innovation Awards. It requires nominations by study abroad professionals, mainly from universities, and is ultimately chosen by students and a popularity vote (rather than considered by our Innovation Awards Academy).
How to get others to vote for you?
It’s not as hard as you may think, though it might take a concerted effort. Here’s our favorite ways to rack up those votes:
1. Ask your university contacts, current students, and past students
They can’t say “no” if you don’t ask, right? All it takes is a quick email to your favorite university-employed frIEnds with a link to the voting page and a sentence or two explaining what you’re up for. Frame it as an invitation and something they might consider, not as an expectation or something that you are demanding. Acknowledge their time is limited but you’d appreciate a couple of minutes given to checking the box next to your name.
2. Get your IR team on board!
You can also ask directly in person, especially if you have a strong international relations team that is making the rounds at universities during the voting window. If they are having an in-person meeting with a study abroad professional, it’s a lot easier to casually mention the award / opportunity and then follow up via email later about it. It will make the interaction more memorable and personalized than a simple email.
3. Social media FTW
We’d be remiss for not giving a gentle reminder to use the power of social networks to ask your community to vote for you! It’s a tried and true method and one that is oh-so-easy to coordinate. Pro tip: Personalize your request and you’ll increase your chances of getting more engagement!
4. Run good programs!
Okay, so “good” might be a little vague, but you probably have an idea of how your organization stacks up against other international education providers—and maybe a couple cringe-worthy memories of when you didn’t keep your work “up to par.” Now you know what it looks like when your organization is thriving—when you’re running “good” programs. Your correspondence is quick, thorough, and friendly, your relationships are solid, your students come back safe and healthy and happy (not to mention more culturally sensitive and with more self awareness). If you want to be recognized for stellar work, you have to put in the work to make sure your programs are, in fact, stellar!
This is essential before you can even *think* about asking your network to vote for you. 🙂
Now that you’re definitely on the ballot, gather your peeps to vote for you!
Current students are usually the most engaged with your company and thrilled to support you. Post it on your social channels, deliver information regarding your nomination to your resident directors (they usually have great relationships with students!), and… of course, ask nicely! We’ll be crowning you our 2018 People’s Choice winner in no time.