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Gold Circle Awards Program

Frequently Asked Questions

Gold Circle Awards Program

Basic GCA Information:
Categories and Criteria
FAQs
Sample Award Entry Form
2014 Eligibility Requirements

Past Winners:
2013 Winners
2012 Winners
2011 Winners

Questions:
Contact goldcircle
@asaecenter.org
or 202-626-2809.

    Submitting And Paying For An Entry

  1. Why should I consider entering the Gold Circle Awards competition?
  2. What organizations may enter the Gold Circle Awards competition?
  3. How do I submit an entry?
  4. Can required printed materials for an entry submission and check payments be postmarked January 31, 2014 Or, do they have to be received by 5:00 p.m. EST on January 31?
  5. Why does the entry submission period end January, when winners are not announced until April?
  6. What should I put for the goals/objectives, strategy/tactics, and success metrics/results parts of the application?
  7. What is the difference between Printed/PDF format and Digital Interactive format?
  8. What is the cost to enter the Gold Circle Awards competition?
  9. Another staff member of my association is an ASAE member. Can my colleague sponsor our entry so we receive the member rate for the entry fee?
  10. Approximately how much time does ASAE estimate that it will take to prepare an entry?
  11. What forms of payment are accepted for Gold Circle Awards entries?
  12. Can I submit multiple entries in the same category?
  13. Is there a discount for submitting multiple entries?
  14. If I submit any entry for one category, but the judges decide that my entry should be in a different category, will it automatically be moved or have I lost my chance?
  15. When must my communications piece have been completed to be eligible for the 2013 GCA competition?
  16. Judging, Recognition & Ceremony

  17. How are entries judged?
  18. Who are the judges?
  19. Can I participate as a judge if my association has entered the competition?
  20. Do I receive CAE credit if I am a judge?
  21. How are winners notified and recognized?
  22. When is the award ceremony and where is it held?
  23. How many people from my association can attend the ceremony?
  24. If I win a Gold Circle Award, do I have to attend the ceremony?
  25. What do winners receive?
  26. What do recipients of “Honorable Mentions” receive?
  27. Will ASAE help me with promoting the news if my organization wins an award?
  28. Additional FAQs

  29. Will you return my entry following the competition?
  30. Will I receive feedback on my entry following the competition?
  31. Is there an appeals process if I don’t win?
  32. What is the Gold Circle Award for Overall Excellence and how is it selected?
  33. Is there a permanent, on-going roster of winners from previous competitions?
  34. Is there someone I can talk to if I have questions about my entry?

Submitting And Paying For An Entry

  1. Why should I consider entering the Gold Circle Awards competition?
    The Gold Circle Awards represent the best of association marketing, membership, and communications. Receiving a Gold Circle Award in any category demonstrates the excellence of your work to your peers, fellow staff members, and your association’s membership.
  2. What organizations may enter the Gold Circle Awards competition?
    The Gold Circle Awards competition is open to all 501(c) nonprofit organizations. The competition is open to those who are members of ASAE as well as nonmembers. Entries may be submitted on behalf of a 501(c) nonprofit organization by a for-profit business partners; however only the 501(c) nonprofit organization will be recognized as the winner.
  3. How do I submit an entry?
    Information on entering is listed in Collaborate in the Volunteer Town Square (sign in using your ASAE Member user name and password). All applicants must complete an electronic entry form, even if you are entering a category that requires hard copy submissions. Payment can be submitted via check or credit card. Please note, proof of payment should be sent in along with your entry submission materials by printing out a copy of your payment confirmation.
  4. 4. Can required printed materials for an entry submission and check payments be postmarked January 31, 2014 Or, do they have to be received by 5:00 p.m. EST on January 31?
    All entries, materials and payments must be RECEIVED (not postmarked) at ASAE headquarters by 5:00 p.m. EST on January 31, 2014.
  5. 5. Why does the entry submission period end January 31, when winners are not announced until April?
    Coordinating all of the elements of the awards, including the processing of entries and judging requires time and is managed by volunteers and one staff person at ASAE. In order to give all entries the consideration they deserve, we need this time for processing and judging.
  6. What should I put for the goals/objectives, strategy/tactics, and success metrics/results parts of the application?
    Goals should be broad and overarching while your objectives should be expressed in specific and measurable terms. When discussing goals, consider describing how the entry factored into your organization’s mission. Strategy/tactics should outline the plan, strategy or tactics you used to reach the goals and objectives set. For the measurement of your goals and objectives please indicate your metrics for success. This could include: number of hits to your website per year and if there is a trend towards increasing, how many people are opening and reading your newsletter, comments and data on your marketing, membership, or communication programs from your member. Samples of the 2013 Gold Circle Award winners are available on the 2013 Gold Circle Award Winners page. Feel free to take a look to see what information other organizations submitted last year.
  7. What is the difference between Printed/PDF format and Digital Interactive format?
    First, remember that you must submit your entry samples in original format presented to targeted audience; for categories that require printed materials, eight sets of the required printed materials for that category must be provided (if your magazine is transmitted to your members as a PDF, you can submit it to the contest as a PDF, but if you mail hard copies of your magazine to your members, you must submit hard copies with your entry). Digital/Interactive entries should include interactive elements, like hyperlinks or a table of contents that allows users to click to the section they are looking for. In other words, users should be able to interact with the entry in some active way other than just reading it.
  8. What is the cost to enter the Gold Circle Awards competition?
    If anyone on your staff is a member of ASAE, the member entry fee is $150 per entry. The nonmember entry fee is $300 per entry.
  9. Another staff member of my association is an ASAE member. Can my colleague sponsor our entry so we receive the member rate for the entry fee?
    Yes. The Gold Circle Awards electronic entry form contains space for your name as the submitter, and your colleague’s name as the ASAE member. You must be employed by the same association as the member listed on your entry in order to qualify for the member entry fee of $150 per entry.
  10. Approximately how much time does ASAE estimate that it will take to prepare an entry?
    It depends on your category, but a good estimate is one to two hours per entry. Part of the application asks you to specify goals, objectives, metrics, and outcomes so that the judges can evaluate your entry. These factors are critically important in the judging process, so be sure to plan your entry so that you can supply this essential information and remain within the word limit. We recommend that you use the Word form version to ensure your application is concise and complete.
  11. What forms of payment is accepted for Gold Circle Awards entries?
    We accept credit card payments or checks. If you are paying by check you MUST list the check number on your electronic application and a copy of the entry form. Also, if you are submitting an entry that requires hard copies, you must send a copy of the check in with the entry.
  12. Can I submit multiple entries in the same category?
    When submitting multiple entries in the same category, you are not only competing against other associations, you are competing against your own organization as well.
  13. Is there a discount for submitting multiple entries?
    No.
  14. If I submit any entry for one category, but the judges decide that my entry should be in a different category, will it automatically be moved or have I lost my chance?
    Your entry will be checked for accuracy and to make sure it is in the appropriate category and division. If time allows, ASAE will contact you to correct any inaccuracies in your entry. However, as stated in the Gold Circle Awards Eligibility Requirements, ASAE reserves the right disqualify any entry that includes incomplete or incorrect information.
  15. When must my communications piece have been completed to be eligible for the 2014 GCA competition?
    Entries into the 2014 Gold Circle Awards competition must be completed and distributed between January 1 and December 31, 2013.
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    Judging, Recognition & Ceremony

  17. How are entries judged?
    The evaluation criteria for each category are listed within the category descriptions published at asaecenter.org/GoldCircle. An independent panel of judges is selected to evaluate submissions within each category entries are scored on a five point scale within each area of review.
  18. Who are the judges?
    The judges are volunteers recruited from ASAE membership and nonmembers with experience in specific categories. Anyone with marketing, membership, or communications expertise can volunteer to serve as a judge (sign in using your ASAE Member user name and password). The Gold Circle Awards Committee reviews and approves all requests to be a judge.
  19. Can I participate as a judge if my association has entered the competition?
    Yes, however you will not be allowed to judge any category in which your organization or your clients have entered.
  20. Do I receive CAE credit if I am a judge?
    No.
  21. How are winners notified and recognized?
    ASAE notifies every winner once winners are selected. Winners are promoted via press release, ASAE’s website and magazine, and at the Gold Circle Awards ceremony.
  22. When is the award ceremony and where is it held?
    The ceremony will be held in conjunction with the ASAE Marketing, Membership, & Communications Conference on June 17–18, 2014 in Washington, DC.
  23. How many people from my association can attend the ceremony?
    As many as are available; we want our winners to celebrate their association’s recognition.
  24. If I win a Gold Circle Award, do I have to attend the ceremony?
    We strongly suggest that winners attend the ceremony. If you do not attend, you will still receive your Gold Circle Award and the well-deserved recognition. However, the ceremony is your organization’s chance to walk the red carpet and bask in the glory of your award win. Also, one submission will be named the Gold Circle Award for Overall Excellence at the ceremony.
  25. What do winners receive?
    Winners receive a beautiful, engraved crystal trophy that includes their organization name, the Gold Circle Awards logo for that year, and the category won.
  26. What do recipients of “Honorable Mentions” receive?
    When presented in a given category, recipients of Honorable Mention awards receive a plaque that includes their organization name, the date, and the category for which they were recognized.
  27. Will ASAE help me with promoting the news if my organization wins an award?
    Yes. ASAE will provide a press release template that you can use to spread the word among your media contacts and members. ASAE also issues its own press release listing all the winners.
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    Additional FAQs

  29. Will you return my entry following the competition?
    No. Entries become the property of ASAE and are included in the Knowledge Center..
  30. Will I receive feedback on my entry following the competition?
    No. Gold Circle Awards is a competition and we do not provide analysis of entries to any of the applicants.
  31. Is there an appeals process if I don’t win?
    There is no appeals process. This is an award competition and decisions agreed to by the Gold Circle Awards judges are final. Entrants are not allowed to lobby for an entry.
  32. What is the Gold Circle Award for Overall Excellence and how is it selected?
    The Gold Circle Award for Overall Excellence was introduced in 2010. The Gold Circle Awards Committee will review the category winners of Gold Circle Awards and then select one as the “best of the best.” The recipient of this award is announced during the Gold Circle Awards Ceremony at the Marketing, Membership & Communications Conference.
  33. Is there a permanent, ongoing roster of winners from previous competitions?
    Yes. We have an online list of past Gold Circle Awards winners and honorable mentions. Electronic samples of some of these award-winning entries are also posted. Please visit www.asaecenter.org/goldcircle.
  34. Is there someone I can talk to if I have questions about my entry?
    Yes. Vivian Alabama, a Volunteer Relations Manager for ASAE manages the Gold Circle Awards program, she can answer your questions about entering, and can refer you to a member of the Gold Circle Awards Committee if you would like additional assistance. Feel free to e-mail her at goldcircle@asaecenter.org or call her directly at 202-626-2809.

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