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Learning Series: Common Metrics & Reports in the Call for Entry

Learning Series: Common Metrics & Reports in the Call for Entry

Your awards program has a trajectory at the outset that you expect it to follow. However, it’s unlikely that the trajectory will go quite as planned. Because of this, you’re going to need to make adjustments based on the data you collect and the reports generated from this data.

If you’re thinking “what information?” and “what reports?,” you’re in the right place. In this article, we’ll discuss the common metrics you should collect and how each piece of information may affect your program.

Number of Entries

The number of entries is important because it reflects demand for your program. More importantly, it reveals how demand has grown over time when you consistently collect data year over year. This can prompt your organization to reconsider your strategy, target new audiences, or otherwise change your program to address the problem.

For the best results, collect entry data by category. This will reveal which categories are drawing the majority of entries and which may be lapsing in popularity. This may also help you restructure categories if they’re getting too large or consolidate smaller categories that are no longer drawing a response.

Number of Entrants

This metric doesn’t make sense for every organization because some organizations limit each applicant to one entry. However, if you allow entrants to submit to more than one category, it’s worth collecting entrant data as well.

You can analyze the average number of entries each participant submits by collecting data and generating a report. This is useful should you need to tweak program rules or plan the staff workload.

Repeat Entries

If you allow entrants to submit the same entry to multiple categories, you should collect data to analyze how many entrants take advantage of the opportunity. Some organizations may realize that their categories aren’t clear enough or applicants don’t understand the differences between them and mistakenly submit to multiple categories as a result.

Returning Applicants

Loyalty is just as important – if not more important – than attracting new entrants to your program. Most importantly, returning applicants indicate your program is of a certain esteem and quality, which is something every organization should look for.

You can organize this report by email addresses or the names of organizations to simplify data collection.

Set Goals, Measure, and Make Changes

No awards program follows the precise trajectory planned at the outset. By collecting data in the above categories and more, you can track your trajectory and adjust as needed.

Being flexible is key in any program, especially in the call for entry metrics. With the right data in hand, you can ensure your organization is agile and responsive in what your audience wants.

Ashley Surinak is the resident OpenWater expert on all things content. From the blog to guides and beyond, you'll find her at every turn in your OpenWater journey.

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