Have you heard of the Guardian Small Business Network Showcase?
Well, it does exactly what it says on the tin, so-to-speak – small businesses, are showcased, in The Guardian newspaper. The Guardian explains: “The Small Business Showcase is your chance to show fellow business owners and our panel of judges what your company has done particularly well in a number of different business categories.”
To explain – every month a theme is chosen and small businesses are invited to submit up to 250 words on what they believe they do well under that theme to compete to be included in the showcase. If an entry meets certain criteria, it is published online on The Guardian Small Business Network for all to read and learn from – a section of The Guardian’s website which receives in the region of 90,000 unique visitors a month.
When the judges consider the entries they look at what they feel is best practice and that is the point at which an even bigger prize is on offer. Out of the entries submitted to each theme, the judges select three to be spotlighted. These companies are then interviewed by a Guardian journalist who writes a 500 word case study about the business and what the business does as an example of best practice under the theme. This case study is then included in both the online Small Business Network pages and also printed in the business section of The Guardian too – which has a circulation of around 200,000.
The final stage is that each of the winning case study entrants is invited to an awards evening in the spring where an overall winner from each of the categories is chosen.
To demonstrate what success with entering the Small Business Showcase is like, take a look at my initial entry into the Cashflow category … and then at the article written as one of the three shortlisted entries.