Are Ya Feelin' Lucky?

By Lauren Simonds | Posted May 10, 2007

Got a great little business going? Ready to tout your accomplishments? Why not – especially when doing so could net you $25,000? Yes, that's the top prize in the UPS Best “Out-of-the-Box” Small Business Contest. For the first time in its three-year history, the UPS contest is also open to small businesses outside of the United States, specifically Canada, Mexico, China, the Philippines and Singapore.

UPS said the idea behind the contest is to acknowledge small businesses that are original and creative in their approach. “The majority of UPS customers are small businesses.  When you work every day with small businesses, you understand the challenges they face,” Kurt Kuehn, UPS senior vice president, said in a written statement.  “This contest is designed to recognize and reward those small businesses that are based on innovative ideas and concepts.”

The contest is aimed at companies with annual revenues (2006) of at least $250,000 but not exceeding $10 million. To enter, a company must fill out an online entry form and submit a 500-word essay describing what makes the company original and in what way it's been successful. Either the small business owner or his or her authorized employee must complete the entry, which may be submitted through Sept. 1, 2007.

All eligible entries will be judged by a panel of small business experts – both from inside and outside of UPS. They'll make their decisions based on originality, business implementation and business results.

So what's in it for you, right? The prizes include the following:

  • First place: $25,000 in cash; an IBM small business package valued at $2,000, and inclusion of winning business in an international UPS publicity campaign related to the contest.
  • Second place: $10,000 in cash; an IBM small business package valued at $2,000, and inclusion of winning business in a local UPS publicity campaign related to the contest.
  • Third place: $5,000 in cash; an IBM small business package valued at $2,000, and inclusion of winning business in a local UPS publicity campaign related to the contest.

In honor of its Centennial celebration this year, UPS will award a one-time-only special prize of $10,000 to the small business best exemplifying the “end-to-end customer service” theme of UPS’s Centennial celebration.

Past winners include Designs by Lucinda, Money Savvy Generation and The Alzheimer's Store.

A Real Estate Rock Star is Born
Technology and selling real estate go hand-in-hand these days, and HP wants to recognize the land agents who use their tech tools in creative and extraordinary ways. That's the genesis of HP's 4th Annual Real Estate Technology Contest.

HP wants to hear your stories — how you use technology to improve sales, make the most of your time, and stay one block ahead of your competitors. In return, you'll be eligible to win one of the following ten HP Technology prize packages worth $500 to $3,600.

Grand Prize: An HP Mobile Office
1.  HP Compaq Tablet PC with Windows XP Tablet PC Edition (up to $1699 value)
2.  HP iPAQ Pocket PC 
3.  HP Deskjet Mobile printer
4.  HP Photosmart Digital Camera
5.  HP Real Estate Marketing Assistant software
6.  HP 12c financial calculator
7.  3-in-1 NAS Docking Station

The grand prize has an approximate retail value of up to $3,594.00.

First Prize
1.  HP iPAQ Pocket PC
2.  HP Deskjet Mobile printer
3.  HP Real Estate Marketing Assistant software
4.  HP 12c financial calculator

The first prize has an approximate retail value of up to $1097.

Second Prize
1.  HP Deskjet Mobile printer
2.  HP Photosmart Digital Camera
3.  HP Real Estate Marketing Assistant software
4.  HP 12c financial calculator

The grand prize has an approximate retail value of up to $3,594.00.

Third Prize (seven of 'em)
1.  HP Photosmart Digital Camera
2.  HP Real Estate Marketing Assistant software
3.  HP 12c financial calculator

Each of the seven third prizes has an approximate retail value of up to $548.

All winners will also receive an HP Real Estate Technology Contest Winner plaque and may be used in HP promotional materials.

This contest is expressly for real estate professionals. Go to the online entry form and, in 280 words or less, share how you use technology to succeed in business. They want specifics, people, so list the products you use, how you use them -- and be sure to provide quantifiable results. You must submit your entry by August 15, 2007. Winners will be announced in November at the Realtors Conference and Expo in Las Vegas.

Lauren Simonds is the managing editor of SmallBusinessComputing.com

Do you have a comment or question about this article or other small business topics in general? Speak out in the SmallBusinessComputing.com Forums. Join the discussion today!


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