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How to Run a Successful Design Competition [& Free Template]

Design competitions can be a fantastic way to encourage creativity in various settings, such as schools, clubs, and businesses, or to use as marketing hooks. They let entrants showcase skills and celebrate ingenuity while joining your community.

Our blog'll explore how to organise a successful design competition, highlight the benefits of hosting a contest, and walk you through the most straightforward way to make it happen.

What Are The Benefits of Hosting a Design Competition?

Inspires Creativity: Design competitions encourage participants to think outside the box and push the boundaries of convention. They provide a platform for the birth of unique and innovative designs.

Builds Confidence: Participating in a competition is like a confidence-boosting workshop. It helps individuals become more comfortable presenting their work as they receive recognition and appreciation.

Offers Recognition: Winning a design competition is a nod of appreciation and a confidence booster. It's a way to acknowledge talents and nurture creativity and self-esteem.

Fosters Community: Design competitions bring together people who share common interests. They turn individuals into a collective, promoting community and collaboration. This inclusivity is particularly valuable for introverted or shy participants, giving them a supportive platform to shine.

How Can I Organise My Own Design Competition?

Choose an Engaging Theme: The first step in organising your competition is selecting a theme. It can be specific, focusing on topics related to your brand and goals, or broad subjects, allowing participants to unleash their creative potential.

Define Clear Rules and Guidelines: Your competition's success hinges on clear and transparent rules. Define the guidelines to guide participants in the right direction. To assist you with this, we've created a downloadable PDF that outlines the principles for making an enamel badge. Customise these guidelines, including size and colour, based on your specific requirements, product and budget.

Set Deadlines: Deadlines are the driving force behind creativity. Whether a 15-minute challenge or a two-week project, deadlines create a sense of urgency and discipline.

Choose the Prize: No one will enter your competition without a compelling prize worth winning. We might be biased, but giving the winner custom merch based on their design makes for an excellent reward and allows participants to see their design brought to life.

We suggest choosing:

But any prize you can incorporate the winner’s design into will make for a memorable reward.

Promote Your Competition: The reach of your competition depends on your goals. Will it be a small-scale classroom event or a global extravaganza? Use posters, flyers, and social media to promote your contest. Encourage participants and supporters to help spread the word, subtly encouraging them to share competition details.

Determine the Judging Process: Who will be the judges? Decide whether winners will be selected by a panel or through popular vote. You can also consider online tools to facilitate the voting process.

Announce the Winner: The moment arrives to reveal the winner's name and showcase their exceptional design, creating excitement and celebration. Be transparent with your announcement so you’ll be considered trustworthy for all future events.

Need Help With Your T&Cs? Download Your FREE Template

We’ve created a free downloadable PDF of basic terms and conditions you can use as a starting point. Adapt the T&Cs to your specific organisation to ensure that you’ve got your rules and regulations squared away before you go live with your competition. 

Key Takeaways

Hosting a design competition is an enjoyable way to engage with people in your hemisphere, and turning the winning design into enamel badges, custom patches, or other custom merch is a unique form of recognition that serves as a lasting memento of their accomplishment.

A design competition celebrates creativity and camaraderie, and as you step into the world of design contests, remember that the true beauty lies not only in the finished product but also in the inspiration, confidence, and community it fosters along the way.

We can help bring your winner’s design to life with our FREE service that’ll ensure the winner’s ideas are production-ready for the perfect end to your competition.

Made by Cooper
13 February 2023

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