One of the best ways to incentivize great innovation in our industry is to make it a goal to apply for a national new product award. There are many awards in addition to our traditional awards. One of these is the Edison Awards.

The Edison Best New Product Awards is an annual competition honoring excellence in new product and service development, marketing, human-centered design and innovation.

“The competition is open to innovative organizations across the globe,” according to the website. “The Edison Awards are focused on the innovators as much as the innovations – a unique distinction in the world of award programs. Award winners represent ‘game changing’ products and services, as well as excellence and leadership in innovation around four criteria: Concept, Value, Delivery and Impact. An Edison Award represents significant value to the award winner and to the cause of innovation. It also highlights the strong marketing value of an unbiased third-party endorsement.”

The awards are named after Thomas Alva Edison (1847-1931), the legendary inventor who earned 1,093 U.S. patents.

Each year 150 companies, large and small, are recognized for innovative ideas. One of last year’s winners is the new Craftsman ruler: “The Craftsman Sidewinder Measuring Tape features an exclusive design that allows the body to lie flat unlike traditional tape measures. Combined with a rear tang to hold the tape measure in place, it allows you to measure without the tape tipping over. Plus an auto blade lock, micro texture grip surface and a writable surface to note measurements, this is the new twist on a classic that everyone needs in their tool box.” Take some time to review the product and learn how it won one of the coveted awards.

The benefits of the award are far reaching. Their website lists the following reasons:

“Edison Awards takes every opportunity to publicly acknowledge and promote nominees and finalists to a wide variety of business press and media outlets. Admissible nominations are showcased on the Edison Awards website and social media from October through April to maximize their exposure to our audience. Nominees are encouraged to promote their nomination on their own publicity and marketing campaigns.

“Finalists may attend the annual black-tie gala awards ceremony, either individually, or with their team, to celebrate their win and meet other innovators. The annual event draws hundreds of fellow innovators into a nexus of powerful networking opportunities. They may attend the Meet the Innovators Forum or reserve booth space at the Innovators’ Showcase, both held during the day of the annual gala. Short presentations or participation in panel discussions at the Forum can further increase a company’s visibility. The event is covered by the press and Edison Awards records the entire program, posting the videos on its website for global viewing.

“By touching over 7,000 companies from all over the world during each nomination season, Edison Awards is on the forefront of identifying emerging trends and market developments. Nominations receive an unbiased, high-powered, focus group review by the Edison Awards Steering Committee comprised of hand-picked industry experts from a spectrum of disciplines. This distinction is recognized by the industry and serves as an unbiased 3rd-party endorsement for the innovations advancing to Finalist status. The endorsement delivers an affirmation of superior quality— a confirmation that can reach customers in a way that marketing and advertising cannot.

“Award winners are also given a unique opportunity to share their stories to a variety of audiences. These include business audiences, higher education institutions, K-12 education systems and museums focused on science, industry, innovation, etc. Whether through direct connections that the Edison Awards facilitates to these audiences, or as a part of educational assets developed by Edison Universe, award winners are encouraged to give back to current and future innovators through storytelling, mentorship programs, direct teaching and communication in a variety of media.”

Please strongly consider making a product innovation award one of your stretch goals.

Keep innovating!

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