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OVERVIEW: Advising successful applicants

Advising successful grant applicants of their success and announcing the results is more than a feel-good stage in the grantmaking process. It's also an opportunity to promote your program to the wider world and to build knowledge and capacity - for example, by publicising what led to the success of the winning applications. Make the most of the opportunity with an announcement strategy that serves your program's goals.

This phase of your grants program should be planned separately from Informing unsuccessful applicants, although you might make the announcements simultaneously.

You'll need to consider:

  • Who will decide when and how successful applicants are to be advised of the outcome?
  • Will successful applicants be advised at the same time as unsuccessful applicants?
  • How will successful applicants be notified? Individually or collectively? A phone call followed by a letter regarding contract negotiations? A website listing followed by an email notification? An email followed by a letter?
  • How will the outcome be made public? Via a media release, website announcement, poster on a community noticeboard, community or applicant workshop or event, or in some other way?
  • How will the announcement be used to promote the program? Via a media release that promotes the program as well as announcing the outcome, or a media event and photo opportunity with one of the successful applicants? Or will this happen at contract signing stage?
  • Which stakeholders - e.g. those in the target sector, potential users - will be personally notified of the outcome? Will you send targeted messages to different groups of stakeholders?
  • Will the amounts of individual grants be publicised?
  • Will information about specific applicants - e.g. the strengths of particular applications - be included in any announcement?

Related template

You may also wish to develop a form letter or email for successful applicants; a shell media release; and a script for handling queries from successful applicants regarding next steps.

SmartyGrants TipSmartyGrants users: SmartyGrants allows any fields recorded in the system to be used for reporting purposes, including creation of correspondence such as a template letter for successful applicants. Learn how


Use your announcement of grant winners as an opportunity to increase public awareness of your program. You could even mark the announcement by staging an event to connect the successful applicants with one another, thus creating partnership-building opportunities.

SmartyGrants Tip SmartyGrants users: Applicants using the SmartyGrants system receive a "confirmation of submission" email automatically. This email can be customised to your liking - some grantmakers use it as an opportunity to highlight other great projects, for example. Learn how