You can use signs for such a wide array of purposes from advertising to conveying safety information. However, no matter how you use these products, certain features are almost universal among all the types.
These are the crucial aspects that signage needs to make it a success. You can arrange these in a variety of ways to suit your sign’s specific purpose.
Let’s look at six elements that you need to include on your signs. Together with this, we will cover a few more bonus tips for designing effective signage.
The primary purpose of any sign is to communicate information to its audience. This is what makes it such a powerful tool in the hands of any business owner.
But how do you get this message across?
Yes, images can convey certain messages. But oftentimes, not as clearly as you can with words. It is up to a certain amount of interpretation. Therefore, the meaning an image conveys can be pretty ambiguous.
This is where using text comes in. Here are several reasons why words can be the ideal solution:
First, writing can help you to achieve the goal of the specific sign. What do you want to accomplish? Do you want to sell a particular product? Are you promoting a charity or cause? Use words when advertising something or describing something.
Second, you can use words to share crucial information about your business, like its name.
Third, you will often have to use text to communicate some terms and conditions or disclaimers.
The following are principles which you need to consider when it comes to text:
- Font: You need to choose the font carefully. Don’t choose one that is ornamental nor one that is too thin.
- Size: The text should be large enough that people will be able to read it from the relative distance.
- Amount: Keep it short and sweet. People are much more likely to read and remember a sign with fewer words.
- Complexity: Keep it simple. Go for clarity above anything else. Don’t use too many long and complicated words.
- Readability: All of these aspects boil down to how legible the words will be. There is no point to putting text on your size if people won’t be able to read it for any one of these reasons.
Even though, the script is the key to conveying specific information clearly and unambiguously don’t discount images. Big or small, graphics are still an essential element of signs. It’s no wonder that most signs, whatever their goal, feature graphics of some kind or other.
Images are clearly the main alternative to communicating a message without any words. They are often the element that takes up the most space of any feature on the sign.
One critical use of images in advertising is to create an emotional appeal. This is key if you are trying to persuade an audience to take a particular action. Photographs often work best in this regard.
Graphics not only make a sign more interesting to look at but can also make it more memorable. All of this can help you to achieve your specific goals.
Another way in which graphics are used on signs is through symbols. Symbols are a mark or character used as a conventional representation of an object, function, or process. So these are images whose meaning will be recognized by most people.
Therefore, they are most often used on safety and warning signs like exclamation marks and also on directional signs like with arrows.
Whatever image you go with, try to make it as impactful as possible. You probably only have one chance to catch a person’s attention.
A third critical element on most types of signs is some form of branding.
But what exactly are we talking about here?
Branding is a practice through which a business creates a design, symbol or name that is easily identifiable as theirs. This is essential to help the audience recognize the company or other venture to which it is relevant.
People usually won’t have time to read your entire sign. So it’s better to play smart and make sure that the significant parts, like who your company is, are noticeable.
Here are ways you can incorporate branding on a sign:
- Logo: If your company has a well-established logo this should feature somewhere on your signage.
- Name: Otherwise, you could print your venture’s name somewhere on it. It should be legible. You don’t have to use both if one would be enough to tell people whose sign it is.
- Colors: Does your brand have a specific color palette? If so, it can be a good idea to incorporate this on the sign.
- Motto: A tagline can make your business much more memorable as long as it is catchy. If it fits the purpose of the sign, you could incorporate it too.
The board doesn’t have to be covered with features of your brand, but it should be noticeable.
Remember that your brand identity will be more effective if it is consistent. For this reason, you should keep it recognizable across all your platforms.
However, this aspect isn’t necessary for all signage. For example, there is typically no reason for a safety sign to show off a brand. As a matter of fact, many informational and directional signs won’t need to be branded.
Few things in the world can have such a powerful effect on our minds as color can. It can be challenging to imagine signs without it. Even if you make your signage black and white, it is still an important feature to consider.
Color is a brilliant way to catch people’s attention. Bright and bold shades can help you make sure your sign stands out from its environment.
Additionally, you can use color to make small parts of the sign more visible. It can literally be the best highlighting tool. You can emphasize the most essential elements of the product by printing it in a different color or one that contrasts with its background.
Most of this boils down to creating the right aesthetic for your sign. You want to use the palette to your advantage to make it as appealing and impactful as possible.
Besides all of this, one of the most impactful uses of color is how you can employ it to affect your audience’s mood. You want to pick a palette that will evoke the right emotion and associations in people.
For instance, if you are making a sign to advertise a beach resort, you don’t want to coat it in red. Instead, use blue which can have a calming effect.
To use this effectively, you should learn as much as you can about the psychology of color.
5- Call to action
What is the point of designing and printing a sign if it doesn’t create the desired effect?
All types of signs are made to lead its audience to one action or another. Designers create advertisements to persuade people to buy a product or service from your company. These type of persuasive signs are probably the most flashy and exciting of all the signage products.
Not so differently, safety and warning signs are there to stop people from doing something that can harm them or others. And so forth.
No matter the sign, this is where the call to action comes in. This is any device which is used to prompt a response in the audience.
Nowadays, you will usually hear the term used to talk about digital sales and marketing. However, it is just as crucial in printed media.
A call to action should clearly tell the audience what you want them to do. It can be just a few words or a few sentences, but it should contain a verb of some kind. Words that you can use are:
These can work on both digital and printed signs.
Here are easy techniques you can use to make it more impactful:
- Create a sense of urgency. People are more likely to act if they feel they only have a short time to do so. That’s why limited offers and sales are so popular.
- Tell them what they will gain by taking action. Happiness? Excitement? Knowledge?
- You can make your call to action much more successful by using emotional appeal to persuade your audience.
For some inspiration, take a look at these brilliant examples of digital CTA’s. See for yourself just how effective they can be.
6- Interactive elements
Nowadays, another fantastic feature that you can include on your signage is interactive elements. These are devices that allow your audience to interact with the product physically. This adds a whole new level of depth to the experience.
Today, interactive features are one of the hottest tools in the industry. And for a good reason.
Research has shown that using them can lead to significant results. For example, the duration which a video holds your attention is increased by a whopping 47% when you add interactive elements.
What else do they bring to the table?
- They’re great at grabbing people’s attention. Besides this, it keeps your audience interested for longer.
- You don’t get much more memorable than interactive ads. The more time people spend with a sign, the more likely they are to recall it and your business later on.
- If you use them right, interactive elements can make your signage fabulously fun and exciting. Overall, this means that people are more likely to build positive associations with your brand.
- In digital products, you can use interactive features like a call to action. This can significantly boost responses to your ads.
Once again, this device can work wonders in both digital and printed signage.
You can make digital products interactive by adding links through buttons to creating virtual signs like banners. But this is only one potential application among many. The sky’s the limit to what you can do.
You also have more than one option when it comes to printed media. For example, an easy way you can implement this is to make signs that encourage people to take photos with it – like large frames. Another is to print QR codes on your sign that people can scan in order to find a link to your app.
Other tips to designing signs and their layout
But it’s not enough to simply throw all these elements together. Here are some pro tips on the design and layout of both your digital and physical signs:
- Save space: Don’t overwhelm your audience with new input. You really don’t have to fill every inch of your sign. Instead, stick to the essentials. Focus on making the critical message come across.
- Top to bottom and left to right: This is how we read, so it makes sense that the layout of your sign should match this style. Our eyes are trained to move this way. Therefore, you need to keep this in mind when planning the flow of the sign.
- Focal point: Successful signs usually have one primary central point. This can help you to grab people’s attention. Experts use lines to lead your eye to this center. On top of this, they use contrasting colors to highlight the point.
Intelligent design is becoming increasingly important in the modern world. The more saturated our environment’s become, the harder it can be to create a sign that will catch people’s eye. It’s all about putting the elements together to form a complete picture.
For more information read our article on the importance of good signage and the psychology behind how it works. And if you are having trouble choosing the right products perhaps take a look at the comprehensive guide to the different types of signs and their uses.
Maybe you haven’t heard them called by this name “sign twirlers,” but you’ve sure seen them. Sign twirlers are the people who stand on the street corner and use a sign to garner attention for an area business. There are several different names for them, but “sign twirlers” help you out by providing a mental picture of what some of them do.
And note that we said it provides a mental picture of what some of them do. Of course, not all sign twirlers offer the same performance to passersby. In fact, sign twirling routines can range from nearly non-existent to stunning (and probably everything in between).
Do sign twirlers really increase sales?
While there’s no guarantee that you’ll experience a good ROI in your particular situation, a sign spinner can be worth it according to the director of Liberty Tax. On Marketplace.org Janet Nguyen writes, “Martha O’Gorman, Liberty Tax’s chief marketing officer, said that for every two hours a Liberty store has a waver outside, they typically get one customer.”
Below the surface
As with marketing and advertising generally, take time to determine what effect you hope to achieve when you begin a new campaign or program. Keep in mind that a sign spinner could have an effect that’s not immediately apparent. While some companies may be looking to increase walk-ins immediately, it’s possible that the advertising you do today may offer results tomorrow.
For instance, maybe your sign twirler won’t convince anyone to enter your pizza shop for today’s special. Still, it’s possible that passing drivers will remember your shop next time they’re hungry for pizza. And they may even think “That’s the place that always has great deals” based on what they saw on the street corner.
What colors should I use for my sign?
You’re going to put time, money, and effort behind your company’s sign. Understandably, you want to make a good investment which is why you may be wondering whether any colors are better than others.
Certain colors could affect viewers in different ways. As you choose your colors, you may enjoy gathering ideas from what some say about how different colors are perceived. Start by checking out The Logo Company’s infographic shared in Jeff Desjardin’s article about color choice. And is it any surprise that Cassel Promotions & Signs identifies yellow as a color that “Symbolizes alertness, cheerfulness, happiness, and warmth”?
On the other hand, keep in mind that Gregory Ciotti makes a good point on HelpScout.com as he points out that it’s not a definite science. He says, “Bottom line: There are no clear-cut guidelines for choosing your brand’s colors. “It depends” is a frustrating answer, but it’s the truth.”
Still, he doesn’t advocate ignoring the whole field. And if you’re interested gathering some color-related inspiration, Canva’s Build your brand: 20 unique and memorable color palettes to inspire you might help get you thinking creatively. Then, for more information on creating good signs, check out our Tips And Tricks To Creating The Most Effective Signs For Marketing.
Do I need a sign?
While this one is pretty basic, you may be wondering if you need a sign for your business. Plus, you may be thinking If I do need a sign, why? If this is the direction your thoughts are taking you head over to our The Importance Of Good Signage & The Psychology Behind How It Works.
Can I put my business sign anywhere I want?
Wondering about the limits on where you can place your company’s sign? It’s great that you’re thinking about this. Checking into sign placement do’s and don’ts before setting up a sign is a wise way to avoid trouble later. No, you can’t necessarily put your sign anywhere you want, as certain Detroit businesses can attest. While your sign company may be able to help you out with information here, be sure you also do your own due diligence.
Make an impression (and make it a good one)
As you create your own sign, you may find it useful to begin with the end in mind, as they say. If your sign is part of a broader advertising campaign, identify outcomes you hope to achieve. Then, you can design your sign to fit with those objectives.
Choose your sign company wisely
And don’t hesitate to learn from the wisdom of a good sign company. They may be able to help you with sign design in addition to construction. Plus, look for a company that will be responsive to your needs. And you can always ask to see successful projects they’ve already completed—that way, you’ll feel more confident about working with them.
One of the biggest challenges you will face when trying to get support for a cause is how to get the word out there. You need to plan a promotional campaign to get some exposure.
Signs can be invaluable in reaching this goal.
Well-thought-out elements can contribute to making a sign successful. And these have been used again and again to create brilliant products. You can study existing signs to learn from their strong points.
That’s why this article is all about looking at different signs and how you can use similar ones to promote your cause. This will include some signs done by us at Signarama.
Are you looking for an affordable and temporary solution to promote your cause?
You might need to look no further than coroplast yard signs. They are super low-cost. This means that you can buy and use more of them than of other types. You can also replace them when you need to communicate new information.
Here are some fantastic benefits of this signage:
- Durable: The coroplast material from which they are made means they are waterproof and quite durable.
- Eco-friendly: If you are promoting a cause, you are probably interested in making more conscientious decisions. Luckily, the corrugated polypropylene plastic of yard signs can be recycled. So you can get support for your campaign without harming the environment.
- Cheap: You can have them printed for as little as $0.65 per sign.
You only need to worry about finding a lawn or grassy area to put them on.
The specific boards in the picture stand out for several reasons. First, they use bright colors to catch people’s eye and the white border contributes to this even more by contrasting against the grass.
One of the principles they followed is to print the words in white on a colored background. This increases their readability.
You can use similar signs to gain exposure for your movement and advertise specifics like events.
Wall murals and wraps
One type of sign that can be really useful in promoting a cause is wall murals or wraps.
The example here shows how bright and attractive the can be which is very important in signage. And it shows how signs can include images and text. It’s vital to include both of these in promotional materials for any cause.
On top of this, it demonstrates that it can be used to cover entire walls. You can place it in any physical location that is involved with your movement. But places like shopping centers will often make space available to rent for this use.
One good thing is that they can easily be replaced. If you used wraps, you can remove it and paste new ones. With murals, you can paint over the old signs. So you can update them as your movement and campaign advances. Keep in mind that people are more likely to support causes which are making progress.
Many causes and campaigns have physical locations that act as a base of operations. If that includes you, you need to get some signs for this as well.
A fantastic option is to choose signage that can double up as promotional material as well as decor. Window graphics could fit this bill.
You want to use signage like this that is colorful. It not only catches your eye, but it is also visually appealing. Here, not only the background is bright, but it also includes images which help to show the purpose of the store.
On top of this, there is text too which gives additional information.
That is why it can work well for getting support for a cause. It can increase exposure, help educate, create appeal, and tell people how they can contribute.
A-frame sidewalk signs
Another way you can promote your cause is to use A-frame sidewalk signs like the one above. The board is used for advertising a venture, but it also has a call to action by providing a phone number. So you can use these to let people know how they can give their support.
One feature that the sample shows off is how to use more than one. You can use a few with different messages and place them in succession to communicate more information.
The following are some pros of using A-frame sidewalk signs in your campaign:
- Portability: One of their best features is that they are freestanding and can be moved around as you wish. You can take them wherever you need them most.
- Outdoors: They are usually manufactured to be used outside, so they are made to last and resist weather conditions like wind and rain.
- Indoors: But you can put them inside as well. They work great at events like the ones often used as part of charitable movements.
- Directional: Another possible use of these products is to point out directions. Again this can be vital at events.
- Affordable: They are relatively inexpensive to manufacture.
- Time: Time is such a valuable resource. Many signs like billboards need to be read at a glance. But because sidewalk signs are usually seen when people walk past, people often get more time to look at them and take in their message.
Their versatility and flexibility make them fantastic tools to gain exposure and support.
Vehicle graphics and wraps
If you want to gain support through exposure, there are few better options than vehicle graphics and wraps. What can be better than an ad that can literally move around?
You can cover the same ground with this one product as you would by using a large number of static signs. Therefore, you could save lots of money in the ned. This is generally crucial in any charitable cause or movement.
One look at the sample will show you how flexible they are. These wraps can be designed exactly as you want it to look using graphics, text and a combination of the two.
Sometimes the wraps will only cover a small part of the vehicle. But you can cover the whole car too like above.
A positive aspect of the example is how readable the text is. This is vital with a sign that moves around. Besides this, the writing is placed where it can be easily read on the side of the vehicle. It can be a great idea to put it on the back of a car as well.
Banners are a staple of the signage industry. You can see them almost anywhere. And no wonder! They are cost-effective but are still very successful.
The examplehere shows how simply they can be used to advertise a cause. Designers kept this specific one simple. This can work well for promoting a cause especially one that is well known or if you put them up at movement-related events.
However, you could print out much more information on them if you want, including contact, details, etc.
Banners are extremely versatile. The one in the picture was printed so that you can hang it horizontally. But this isn’t your only option. You can typically customize the size and orientation as you wish to suit your needs.
Manufacturers usually offer ones that need to be hung as above, but they could also provide free-standing ones.
The banners we looked at first are mostly used to gain exposure. But they can also be used to focus on conveying information.
People are more likely to support a cause when they understand what it’s all about. Well-designed banners can be a brilliant way to do this. Through education, you can get more exposure and persuade potential supporters.
The sign above shows how you can cleverly use them to bring a point across. You want to be careful not to overwhelm the audience with graphics. People are more likely to look at and read your sign when there are images included.
This means they’re more likely to remember the message too.
You will notice that even though this sign conveyed a lot of details, it still kept it short and straightforward. This is key in all types of signage.
Besides this, it obviously offers all the other benefits of banners like being affordable, flexible and customizable.
Golf is frequently called the greatest game. One way it lives up to its name is how often it is used to help promote and gain support for causes.
Through sponsored games, it is a brilliant way of gathering money and getting people involved.
But they won’t necessarily be useful if you don’t use signage and other features to make sure people know what it’s all about. So if you want to use golf in your campaign, it can be a good idea to invest in golf signs.
Thesigns here are made from coroplast which is inexpensive and weather resistant. They are printed and folded so that they are freestanding. You can also print out a range of different ones like these and can place them all around the course.
You can use them to advertise your sponsors and even point out who is sponsoring which hole. A great idea is to design a logo or something similar with the name of the cause and print it on all of these boards as in the example.
You don’t get much bigger than billboards. They are definitely statement pieces.
They are essentially large posters. Therefore, they are great at catching your audience’s attention. Besides this, they are often placed in spots where tonnes of people will see them regularly over roadways and so on.
As you can see with the example above, they provide a lot of room. You will be able to include loads of graphics and text. This is fantastic for promoting a cause. It can help to convince people to get involved by educating them. It should also give your contact details and actions they can take to provide support.
Like the sample, you can choose a font that is large enough to read from the ground. You should make sure that the text stands out from the background by using contrasting colors.
You can also learn from the use of photos on this board. On it is printed a picture of a woman, and her story is connected to the cause. Using emotional appeal is crucial in promoting a charitable cause.
Unfortunately, they are much more expensive than some of the other options. You usually have to rent advertisement space for them. They are on the high-end of adverts.
But, they are very durable and long lasting so they will keep on being of use.
You might feel that one sign isn’t enough. And there is no reason to limit yourself.
Marketing pros know how to use different platforms to achieve their goals. For maximum efficiency, you can even use them in the same location. Just check out thisexcellent use of floor graphics and wall graphics.
Placing printed materials on several surfaces in one spot can undoubtedly increase their overall impact. It’s rarer than only using one type, so it makes it much more memorable.
Another positive feature of this example is they used all the space available to their advantage by printing different graphics and text on each.
So if you want to not only gain exposure but make sure people don’t forget you might want to consider similar combos.
Learning from the past
All of these signs are great examples of how you can use these products to promote your cause. The different options can work better for specific locations and parts of your campaign.
These samples use a variety of principles to help make them more useful. Hopefully, they can inspire you by showing you how you can use them to get more support for your cause.
There is a lot of work that goes into making fantastic signs of any kinds. To help you make the most of it read our articles on mistakes when making promotional materials and the psychology behind good signage.
Marketing wouldn’t be what it is today without psychology. Psychologists played a crucial role in developing methods and theories about advertising that are still being used.
With the help of their work, ads have become much better at making an impact. This has been extremely useful in designing and making signs a success.
No matter what your objectives are, you can apply psychological principles to make sure you get your message across.
In this article, we are going to discuss the importance of good signage in any business or business venture. We are also going to cover the psychological principles you can use to make your signs even better.
The importance of good signage
Signs can be used for a variety of purposes. There are endless possibilities. But in essence, it all boils down to communicating a message, whatever that message might be.
Remember that effective signs are signs that can change people’s behavior.
To get to grips with the purpose of signs in your business, here is a breakdown of the most common types of signage:
- Persuasive: These are the typical advertisements. They are all about persuading and convincing people to become your customers. You want them to buy from you or hire your services etc.
- Information: One key role of signage is to convey essential info. Do you want to tell people about your trading hours? Or when your business was established? These products are your solution.
- Directional: You need some way to guide potential customers to and through your company. This is where these signs come in. You can use them to point out significant spots in the store or business complex.
- Safety and warning: It’s a legal requirement that companies and public areas have safety signs that warn people about potential hazards. OSHA has set out standards about when which warnings are necessary. They are often bright and even reflective to increase their visibility.
It’s hard to imagine a business without any signs at all. They are such essential components of the day to day running of a venture. Not to mention their critical role in advertising.
Choose your objective
So enough about how fantastic signs are.
You can’t make a sign if you don’t have a clear goal. It might sound obvious to some, but this should be the first step that you take.
Ask yourself what behavior you want to change in people?
Here are some helpful questions that you can ask yourself:
- Do you want them to buy a specific product or hire a particular service?
- Are you trying to attract people to your storefront?
- Do you want to increase your exposure?
- Are there critical messages that you need to convey?
- Are you planning on improving your reputation?
You might have answered yes to more than one of these questions. And that’s fine. You can have subgoals. However, there needs to be one overarching aim on which the signage is focused. Otherwise, you risk confusing and overwhelming the audience.
The importance of good signage can be seen in their ability to help you achieve all of these goals.
Once you have established your objective, you can use psychological principles to determine what the best way would be to use signs to achieve this.
A vital contribution that psychology has made to the field is in assisting advertisers in identifying their target market. This is the particular group at which the specific sign or advertisement is aimed.
These are the people that you want to reach and communicate this.
So, one of the first steps in designing signage is to figure out who they are. To do this, you should try your hand at audience profiling. You need to assess the general demographics of this audience.
The following are some of the vital statistics that you need to consider:
Basic data is essential to creating a more detailed profile of your customers that can also be called the buyer’s persona. Beyond this, you should consider what their interests are and what appeals to them. Most importantly, you need to find out what their needs are and how you can play a part in fulfilling them.
Psychological research methods like surveys can be invaluable for gleaning this information about your existing customers. If you want to expand your customer base, you can work out their audience profile first.
You need to use these details throughout the design process. It will play a role in every aspect including the type of sign that you choose to the graphics that you will use.
Nowadays, there are a bunch of specific tried and tested strategies that business uses throughout their marketing campaigns. They are typically based on consumer psychology. These are also applied in their signs.
Here are three of the most popular tactics that you can use in your signage
1- Emotional appeal
Advertisements which can elicit feelings from their audience are much more impactful. That is why experts try to use signs and other ads to market products based on the emotional value that it can have in their lives.
For example, can the product make them happy? Could it make people exhausted?
Your sign can through words or graphics portray how it could possibly change their experiences.
According to a recent study, there are four basic emotions: happy, sad, afraid/surprised, and angry/disgusted. There are more nuanced feelings that fall underneath each category. These groupings can be a great place to start.
Take a look at these examples of ads that use emotions to their advantage.
Businesses often want to use marketing materials to compete with their top competitors. But this cannot necessarily be directly addressed in their signs.
One way to do this though is to highlight what makes your brand different. Your signage can be a fantastic platform to show off these features. This could include new products, services, or elements of your customer experience
3- Addressing problems and doubts
A fundamental principle of marketing psychology is that there are several possible reasons why consumers might be reluctant to buy your products or services. Businesses need to be aware of this to develop solutions to these issues.
Try to think of possible hindrances, like cost. One way to address this is to use the wording or graphics on your signs to dispel these doubts.
It’s vital to remember that without careful design, signs are close to useless. Some people make the critical mistake of assuming that this is just about making their sign pretty. But this is not true.
One demonstration of this is the Stroop Effect. In this experiment, participants are shown the names of colors in the corresponding color. They are then asked to name the shade. Testers record how long this takes. The test is repeated, but the color doesn’t match the word.
Participants took much longer to complete the second test as the inconsistencies cause conflict in your mind. This is a fundamental way to show how important it is that the design matches the message.
In advertising, it’s vital for the audience to understand the message clearly and as quickly as possible. Every aspect of the sign needs to work together to tell your story.
Signage now dominates so much of our environment. The competition is fierce. Therefore you might need the help of professionals to make sure yours stands out.
Contemporary design principles are based mainly on psychological theories. Throughout this article, we will cover specific guidelines.
All about vision
You can almost say that as humans we are typically visual creatures. Sight is undoubtedly one of the senses that we rely on the most.
To state just one statistic as proof the addition of images can increase the view rate of content by an incredible 94%.
Graphics don’t only generate interest. Our brains tend to process visual information much faster. A single well-designed image could potentially convey much more info and much more quickly than a line of text would.
Another benefit of graphics is that they are in a sense universal. There are some images which can be understood by people across the world. That is why warnings often only employ symbols.
So depending on the purpose of your signage, visuals could be indispensable.
Informational, safety and directional signs will probably work better with functional images which portray an action or a bit of info.
You will probably get better results if you use suggestive graphics in persuasive boards. These are ones which can elicit strong feelings or associations.
In advertising try to use any visuals on your signs to help appeal to your audience and persuade them. For example, let’s say you want to convince customers that your product could make them happier. Use graphics that convey this, like people who are smiling or laughing.
You can’t talk about visuals without discussing color. There are hundreds of statistics that you can cite to demonstrate how vital this feature is. Though two primary ones are that the use of color can boost both sales and readership by up to 80%.
Therefore, this is a brilliant tool when creating signs of any kind. The following are a few guidelines to keep in mind when deciding on which colors to use:
- You don’t necessarily want it to clash, but the signs should contrast against the surroundings. This is necessary to make it stand out and get it noticed.
- Don’t use a single color or shade of color. This will just look monotonous and make it tricky to read and understand.
- The color of text should contrast against that of the background.
- The scheme should match or in some way reflect that of your companies branding.
- Various colors can have different effects on your emotional and mental state. For example, black can symbolize authority, elegance, seduction, and mystery.
One key point to remember is that there are usually rules and regulations which determine the colors of safety and warning signs.
Choose words wisely
Although visuals are essential, you shouldn’t forget about the text. It can be critical in conveying the central message of the signs. This is also a way to portray other necessary details like the contact details of the business and so on.
If you only remember one thing about the psychology of text in signage, it is to keep it simple. Don’t use too many words and be selective about the words that you do use. Overall, the message needs to be precise.
A pro tip is to focus on emotionally powerful words. They will make the sign more impactful and more memorable.
We have a bigger chance of noticing anything new or different in our environment. Psychologists have found that we are subject to habituation. This means that we stop noticing things that we see often.
This is one reason behind the success of new signs. Because of this, you might want to consider changing all your signage every few months or so. It will help you to keep the attention of your audience.
When you are in the design process, you should try to think of features that can make your sign unique and unusual.
Talk about new, technology has opened exciting avenues in the marketing and general signage industry. Traditional forms of advertising are static and are creating the impression of being broadcasted to the audience.
While these are brilliant platforms and still play a crucial role, it can be a great idea to give the new platforms a try.
Many of these products allow customers to interact with the signs such as ones that are adapted for touch screens. This can give your audience a measure of control over them which can increase the impact that they have in the end.
It would be a huge mistake to underestimate the importance of good signage. From pointing out directions to attracting new customers, they are often a central part of helping a business to reach success.
Use the above psychological principles to your advantage to make your signage more powerful.
As you can see, signs are all about their design. This is as true for all thetypes. So it’s essential that you get this right. At Signarama we offer professional design services to help you make the best of the product.
Learning from others who have done well promoting their business can be instructive. But, on the flip side, you can also learn from marketing ploys that just don’t cut it. One is a case of imitating what someone else has done right. And the other is a case of steering clearing of what others have done wrong. Save yourself time, money, and sanity by learning from the mistakes of others.
Today we offer some potential don’ts when creating promotional materials—things you may want to avoid as you promote your business. However, don’t forget that, to some degree, these judgments are relative. What may flop for one company, could be successfully carried out by another in some cases.
There aren’t always hard-fast rules. Be sure to deploy your own common sense and be forward-thinking. Keep in mind both your own thorough understanding of what you do as a company and of what your customers expect from you. That said, let’s dive into some scenarios you may want to steer clear of:
1 – To proofread or not to proofread—it’s not even a question
Enter a marketing firm that wants desperately to reach more clients in their local business district. They’ve set aside money in their advertising budget to rent a billboard to bring their message to nearby companies. The slogan?
Were reinventing businesses all over the city.
The problem? Well, if you were looking for a marketing company to help you reinvent your business, you would want it to help create top-tier marketing material, right? And top-quality marketing material shouldn’t have glaring spelling or grammatical errors. Thus, omitting the apostrophe in their first word doesn’t exactly paint a promising picture of the quality of their services.
The bottom line: Don’t forget to check (and maybe double check) your promotional materials.
2 – Not vetting for appropriateness
If you thought that think before you speak was advice that only children have to heed, you were wrong. The idea applies to marketers, too.
Imagine you’re the head of marketing at a medium-sized company in the foodservice industry. As such, you’re one busy manager and you don’t have time to tackle everything yourself. So you delegate promotional material creation to a star new hire who you recruited from halfway across the country. This talented individual comes up with what they think is a perfect slogan for a new product launch.
Turns out, coming from hundreds of miles away is a bit of a liability in this case. Their slogan contains language that has a very different meaning where you live from its meaning in your employee’s home state. At the end of the day, you never noticed it, but the community sure did.
The whole thing blows up and the company trends on social media—but not for a good reason. Innocent mistake? Yes. Innocuous outcome? Not so much.
3 – Cracking bad jokes
A popular hotel needs a billboard along a nearby highway. When he’s not at his hotel day job, the in-house “graphic designer” happens to be a savvy political strategist. He knows a lot about what’s going on in city politics. He designs a billboard that incorporates a joke about a recently contested city statute. It’s funny, and he and a co-worker laugh uproariously at the creation.
Two days later, it appears on three billboards. Some viewers don’t find it funny. Incidentally, neither do the designer’s managers who now have to deal with the community fallout. One way to try to prevent this kind of situation is to vet all promotional materials before they go out. In fact, the company could decide to mandate that multiple members of the company have an opportunity to weigh in before promotional materials are disseminated.
4 – Being vague on important details
Let’s say a local gift shop just came up with a snappy ad that simultaneously promotes their weekend craft festival and their shop as a whole. It’s already making viewers chuckle and smile. And people are definitely interested in checking the place out.
However, there’s one slight problem. The ad doesn’t mention when the fair is, where it is, or even how to get in touch with the company. While interested participants can do some legwork of their own to find out more, the company may have just shot itself in the foot. What if some potential participants decide that looking up more info is just too much work?
5 – Stabbing blindly at promotion
A manufacturing company has a “meeting of the minds” for upper management. They decide that the company needs to do more to market itself. So they choose to put more effort and money into promotion.
They elect to use a targeted mailing, a billboard, and a series of in-person visits to potential clients to try to market the company. Six months later, they discuss whether the work has had a positive impact. The chairman asks if they met their goals for the promotional campaign. The room is silent until someone is brave enough to ask “What were our goals?” Uh-oh.
If you don’t know what you’re aiming for, how will you know when and whether you reach it? Undirected promotion might seem great in the heat of enthusiasm, but what you really want is promotion that’s actually effective. And how will you know if it’s effective until you determine what effect you actually want to achieve?
Now that we’ve run through some scenarios you should try not to repeat, don’t forget that there is a flip side to this coin. Thus, take some time to learn about what you should and could do. If signs are in your promotional pipeline, check out our Tips And Tricks To Creating The Most Effective Signs For Marketing. Then, head over to 3 Of The Most Creative Signs & Banners In And Around Detroit.
A business owner looking for signs is like a kid in a candy store. There is a vast variety of options to choose from. Each of them is better for reaching specific goals. That’s why it’s critical to know your stuff before selecting a product.
Whether you want to provide some information or want to promote your company, it is essential to do a bit of research. Read on to learn more from our guide to types of signage and their uses.
Types of signage
The options that we are going to discuss fall into several categories. Here are a few of the primary groupings:
- Outdoor signs: These items are some of the most critical assets in an advertiser’s toolbox. They are all about increasing exposure. Often they will be placed right outside your physical location. Otherwise, they can be put up in strategic spots in the local area.
- Indoor signs: You can use indoor signage for a variety of purposes. They typically work best at your physical location. Many of them are aimed at informing potential customers about things. Other times they are meant to advertise specific aspects of the business.
- Persuasive signage: One of the most exciting uses of signage is to promote your business, service or product. So many products are made primarily to do this. They are great at persuading your customers to engage with your company in some way.
- Informational signs: Remember that not all signage is meant for advertising. You also need a platform to convey info through. This group includes things like way finders, directional signage, and menu boards among other things. They will often be at or near your place of business.
Deciding which of these groups will work for you can be a fantastic place to start. Let’s move on to looking at the specific types of signage in more detail.
1- Window graphics
The first kind of signs that we are going to talk about is window graphics. They are usually made from vinyl or perforated vinyl that has images printed on it. You fix them to your store’s window.
There are tons of customization options to work with. If you want to, you can use graphics that cover the entire space. Otherwise, you can go with smaller images or a few lines of text, whatever suits your goal.
This striking platform has more than one purpose. Because it is part of your physical location, it can become part of the decor for your storefront.
On top of this, you can use it as promotions for your products or services. You can use them to increase walk-ins to your location. Or you can use them to convey information like your trading hours.
2- Murals and wraps
These are another product type that you can place on the wall of your storefront.
Manufacturers mostly print these wraps on vinyl. This material makes the surface look shiny and vibrant.
But it’s vital to try to have yours professionally done. You don’t want it to become shabby too quickly and drag down the appearance of your storefront. Well-made examples of these signs are water resistant so that you can clean them with water and soap.
Murals and wraps are a great option if you want to spruce up your store. You can advertise aspects of your business, focus on aesthetic appeal, or aim to inspire.
3- A-frame sidewalk signs
Sidewalk signs are outdoor products, which are lightweight and cost-effective. Besides this people love them because they can be moved around as you want.
It is all about grabbing passersby attention. So, make it pop. Use catchy phrases and vibrant colors to draw people’s eye.
You can usually put them on the sidewalk in front of your physical location. Or in the vicinity of your store. These are the areas where it will have the most impact.
Here are a few productive uses of A-frame sidewalk signs:
- You can use them to point potential customers in the direction of your business. Put it at the other end of the street and indicate the route to your place.
- Print your menu on the sign. Customers find it super convenient when they can see what’s on offer without even stepping foot in the restaurant.
- Use the board to inform customers about your trading hours and other important info.
- Show-off in-store promotions and specials. It can be the ideal way to entice potential customers to support your business.
4- Vehicle graphics
Talk about moveable. You don’t get much more mobile than that vehicle graphics. They are wraps that you can have fixed to any means of transport.
If you have business vehicles, you can mark them with these. But you can even stick them onto your own automobiles for extra exposure.
The best feature of these signs is that they will move around wherever you go without any extra effort. You can use them to promote your business and distribute important info like your contact details and location.
A pro tip is to go for laminated wrapping material. This can boost its lifetime and give you much more value for your money.
5- Floor graphics
In contemporary advertising and business, any and every surface is fair game – this includes floors.
Floor graphics are a great resource that you can use. You can use them to point out directions or specials in your physical location. But they also make brilliant advertisements.
Make sure that you get decals with heavy duty laminate to keep them in tip-top shape.
Don’t be afraid to get creative. There are no limits to what you can do with these products. Here are some fantastic graphics examples to inspire you.
6- Banner Signs
One of the most popular signage products is banners. They don’t go out of style.
A key benefit of this product is that they are low cost yet they can be super useful.
Banners are commonly used to advertise events like conferences or opening events. However, you can also use them to promote your business on a longer-term basis.
The signs are extremely customizable. Printers usually have a wide range of sizes, shapes, and every color under the sun available.
You can use them inside or outside. But make sure that you let your printer know beforehand how you plan to use your banner. And ask if the company has heavy duty material for outdoor spaces.
7- Safety signs & decals
All businesses need to take necessary safety precautions. An essential part of this is to use symbols to warn of any hazards or inform people of any rules that are there to keep everyone safe.
There are policies which indicate what signage each business should put up.
Here are a few possible signs:
- General danger signs
- Electrical safety sign
- Biohazard sign
- Chemical hazard sign
- High voltage warning
- Fire escape signs
You can have these printed on aluminum-backed boards or sticker type decals.
Take a look at this article for more information on safety signs that you need in your business.
No matter what your business is, you will be looking for a way to inform people about your name. It is usually put up right in front of your physical location on the wall. One way to do this is to use letter signs.
You can use these to spell out anything you want, and you can even choose the font.
Dimensional ones are 3D signs that can help you make sure that your name stands out.
Channel letters are plastic or aluminum. They are also three dimensional. But what makes them different is that they are lit up in some way. You can light them up with neon or LED from the back or front.
9- Monument signs
Another exterior sign is monument signs. These are freestanding pieces that generally sit low down on the ground.
You really have lots of options with these boards. Mostly you will have control over the sign and the actual base on which you fit it. The structure is often built from masonry or a combination of this and metal.
These signs tend to look very prestigious and grand.
You can use them to indicate the name of a business, directions, or a place.
10- Pylon signs
Pylon signs are also a freestanding structure. Most essentially, they are board that you place on top of a pole or poles. But other than that, the sky’s the limit.
Like with many other signs you can customize these from top to bottom. You can decide on the size, shape, height and even amount of boards on the pole. For example, many office parks or shopping complexes have a tall pylon sign with different sections for every business.
Therefore, these products can be used to give directions, advertise something or inform people of a place’s name.
11- Yard signs
If you are looking for a temporary solution, yard signs can be the way to go. These products are boards corrugated plastic called coroplast on which you can print graphics or information.
Lightweight and water-resistant these pieces give you real bang for your buck. They can work well if you are working on a budget. You can typically secure them to some poles and move them around as you need them.
All of these features means that they are particularly popular with real estate agents to advertise specific properties. Yard signs are brilliant for events too.
12- LED message centers
But what if you are looking for a sign that can be changed daily or even more than once a day?
Electronic message centers could be the right choice for you. They are computerized boards which display messages in LED lights. Letters and numbers can move across the screen or flash in turns. So there is almost no limit as to how much content you can display.
Their most common purpose is to convey essential messages or information. That is why schools, churches among other organizations love to use them.
You can mount the LED section of the board on a sign that gives more information like the name of the business.
13- Menu boards
Nowadays, running a successful restaurant is about more than just cooking delicious food. It also requires effective promotions and a pleasant atmosphere.
A core part of any restaurant, takeaway, or cafe is their menu board. It is an essential piece of signage which tells your customers everything they need to know about your menu. That is why it is vital that it fits the personality of your business and appeals to your clients.
The following are four common types of menu boards:
- Static-printed menu boards: These are a great option for places whose menu doesn’t change often. Owners often put them into snap frames so that they can change them out when they do make changes. They are very inexpensive.
- Dry erase menu board: These are signs that manufacturers print on a laminate material. You have the ability to write on these, erase specials, change prices, and so on. These are the product for you if you make frequent changes.
- Magnetic menu boards: People make this product out of magnets so that you can exchange certain pieces of it. This is why they work well if you offer specific items on specific days.
- Digital screen menu boards: These are the newest menu signs on the market. For many owners, they are the perfect solution because you can change them as often as you want without extra printing costs. You can even show videos on the board.
These are most of the primary types of signage that are available. They cater to all kinds of budgets and goals. But it is by no means an exhaustive list.
We make all of these categories of signs and more at Signarama. And we can help you to turn your vision into reality. For a complete list, here are the types of signage that we offer.
Besides choosing the right product, it is crucial that you focus on every aspect of the sign’s design. It is a vital part of making it as impactful as possible.
In the restaurant industry, it goes without saying that one of your main goals is to connect customers with food. And what better way to reach customers with your delicious food than to bring it to them? That’s one of the advantages of a food truck—you can drive those tasty offerings to the customer instead of the customer having to come to you. Of course, just like a brick and mortar restaurant, you’ll still need to think about having an appealing design and a useful menu. So today let’s explore food truck menu design.
Lead with legibility
While legibility may seem remarkably obvious, it’s a good place to start anyway. You want potential patrons to be able to read your menu. After all, who wants to stand out in front of your truck trying to make out what their options are? Better to have them spend time agonizing over which delicious-sounding option to choose than painstakingly try to decipher what their options actually are.
So, be sure your menu isn’t an illegible scrawl. And make sure your words are large enough for patrons to read. You probably don’t want people squinting at your sign either. Even if you’ll be spending most of your time inside the food truck, check and see how things will look from the outside since that’s where your customers will be.
Find examples of good food truck menu design
One step you could use as you design your menu board is to gather inspiration from other menu boards or menus. Find examples you do or don’t like. You can use them to help you think about why you’re drawn to or repelled by certain things. Then, use that knowledge and those preferences to inform your own food truck menu design process.
As you learn from other menus, pay attention to differences you see in fonts and line spacing. Also, consider researching the readability and attractiveness of certain fonts (including what fonts are best for people with vision difficulties).
Promoting with pictures
If you’re going to be using photos on your menu board, you may want to hire a professional photographer because you want your food to look it’s very best. And you surely don’t want to make your food look drab or disgusting by using low-quality photos.
Also, make sure you place your menu board in a good location—whether it’s on the food truck itself or on a standalone sign. Of course, you don’t want it to be hidden from view. Instead, you want it to be easy for customers to see and read.
Additionally, you don’t want your sign to be too high or too low. If your customers get a sore neck from weighing their options, that’s not exactly good design, is it? On top of this, be sure that when you place your sign, you’re in the clear according to any rules for the municipality you’re in.
Coming to colors
Next up—making food truck menu design choices that have to do with color. One thing you may want to do is choose colors that match your branding. That way, you’ll be working toward a unified look. If you don’t have a logo yet for your business, you may want to come up with one now, matching it to the aesthetic of your menu.
Formatting for the long term
When it comes to masterminding the layout of your menu, consider going with something that can be sized up or down. That way, if you want to use the same layout for individual menus or even for a large menu board (if you also have a brick and mortar location), you can. Then, you may be able to save yourself from having to format a new menu for either of those needs.
Where does it go?
One thing you’ll have to decide is where this food truck menu will be. Will it be a part of the food truck itself or something you stow away then bring out at the start of every day?
- Your truck as your menu – If your menu is going to be emblazoned on the truck, then it may be time to check out our vehicle graphics.
- A standalone sign – Don’t want a food truck menu design that calls for writing on your truck itself? That’s okay, you may be able to use an A-frame sign to get the job done.
- Magnetic signs could also be a way to present your menu on your food truck. However, we do suggest you think carefully about your design if you opt for this. You don’t want to appear tacky.
And keep in mind that you may choose more than one sign. For instance, even if you have an on-truck menu board, you could display an A-frame sign too, letting customers know about the daily special.
Steer clear of B-grade
It’s time to explain to your food truck customers what it is you have for them to eat. Don’t just scratch your offerings on pieces of paper and poke it out the food truck window. Put some thought into your food truck menu design with expressive graphics. Integrate your menu with the other design elements of your truck for a cohesive and memorable look. Then check out our Tips And Tricks To Creating The Most Effective Signs For Marketing for more ideas to reach your customers.
As you consider where you want to steer your business, one thing you may be wondering about is the importance of brand awareness. Even though you’re not sure what it is, you don’t want to miss out on any element that could be significant to the health and growth of your business. So today, let’s brush up on some ideas related to brand awareness.
It makes sense to start with a simple dictionary definition. What is brand awareness? BusinessDictionary.com defines it as the “extent to which a brand is recognized by potential customers, and is correctly associated with a particular product.”
On the street
Let’s think of it with a little analogy — because analogies are fun. You’re standing on a street corner waiting for a bus. You recognize someone walking across the street. You think “Oh, I know him (or her)—that’s so-and-so.”
They’ve got the same hair and the same walk as usual. Plus, they’re wearing the same style you know to be their “look.” Maybe subconsciously you even recall what they do for a living, what they care about, and how they spend their time. Even their signature smile and characteristic jokes flash through your mind. In short, you remember who they are and what they do.
Now, relate that back to the importance of brand awareness. As a company, shoot for your customers to recognize you, knowing both who you are and what you do. Further, aim for your company to be the one that comes to mind when they have a need.
As a business owner, would this make your heart skip a beat? Imagine the scenario: there’s a room full of company executives and officers making critical decisions for their business. Someone asks the question, “We need X, so what company should we work with?” (Perhaps it’s marketing, perhaps it’s supplying raw materials, perhaps it’s something else. Whatever it is, it’s what your company does).
Then, a member of the group opens their mouth to speak after a thought flashes through their mind. Lo and behold, they suggest your company. Why? Because what you do and who you are as a company came to their mind first. Bingo!
Littlest kid on the block
Sure, you think being the company to pop into potential customers’ minds sounds like a phenomenal idea. But there are so many companies bigger than you, more strategically located than you, possessing larger marketing budgets than you … the list could go on. You feel like the littlest kid on the block. The importance of brand awareness hits home, but you just don’t feel you have all the advantages of a Fortune 500 company. Maybe not, but don’t hang up your hat just yet.
Maybe you don’t have golden arches in your logo
Let’s say you’re a burger joint. And you’re thinking, “There’s no way I can compete with McDonald’s golden arches. They’re huge, iconic, known around the world. My restaurant is just a little guy. There’s no way I can make millions of potential customers think of my logo instead of the golden arches when they think of a burger.”
Well, it’s a fair point if you’re a small business. Maybe you’re wondering “How can I get McDonald’s customers to come to my burger joint instead?”
But, you may want to stop for a moment and consider if you’re asking the right question. Why are you worrying about McDonald’s customers? It’s a multibillion-dollar company—let it worry about its own customers. You worry about your customers.
Be first to the people who want what you have
Will you be the first company that comes to mind when a hungry person on their lunch break is drooling for a fast-food burger? Maybe not. But what’s to stop you from being the first restaurant that comes to mind when someone is craving an artisan burger from a restaurant with a relaxing ambiance?
If artisan burgers and a relaxing ambiance are what you do and who you are, then we suggest you build brand awareness with that in mind. Make sure your company is strongly linked to the food and atmosphere you do so well. Pop into the minds of people who are asking themselves where they can get a top-notch burger in a calming locale. This may just be about hearts and minds, as they say in politics.
The importance of brand awareness – tap into your own experience
As you work on the importance of brand awareness for your business, ask yourself what kind of branding has stuck out to you in the past. Was it a smashing logo that got you every time? Or maybe it was a one-of-a-kind shipping bag from an online order you placed — and you’ve never forgotten it. Once you’ve identified branding that has had a powerful effect on you personally, start thinking about how you could use some of the same strategies for your business.
Now, you may find yourself believing in the importance of brand awareness but still wondering what you’re supposed to do about it. If you’re feeling overwhelmed about transforming your belief into action, don’t worry. Keep learning, note what you learn, and build your strategy patiently — Rome wasn’t built in a day as they say. Why not dive in by learning about using social media for brand awareness or by reading Building Brand Awareness Using Your Company Logo. And don’t forget that we’re here to help you with that logo or to promote your brand by letting your sign speak.
Small businesses are the epitome of a local and personal shopping experience. They are the lifeblood of many towns across the country. The U.S. Small Business Administration states that there are more than 27 millionsmall businesses in the United States.
One challenge that owners of these businesses face is how to compete with trans-national corporations. In the end, the solution boils down to attracting more customers to your store.
The 29th of March is National Mom and Pop Business Owners Day! So in honor of all the “mom and pop” store owners out there, we’ve created this guide on how to increase walk-ins to your small business storefront in Michigan.
1- Inviting storefront
The first step to drawing more customers to your store is to build an attractive storefront. Take a good look at the exterior of your business. Is it inviting? Does it look like a place that your target customers would like to visit?
This is key to attracting new customers as well as keeping established customers coming back.
You want to make them feel excited about coming into your business.
The following are some strategies that you can try for your window display:
- Keep it neat and uncluttered.
- Put your products on display. Choose some of your best and most popular products to show off.
- Don’t overcrowd the window.
- Design your storefront to suit your brand and style. Customers like stores that are unique and have personality.
- Don’t be afraid to make changes. If something doesn’t work, try something else. Keeping it new can also help keep customers interested.
- Use light cleverly. You want your store to appear well lit to passersby.
If you feel a bit lost, it can be a great idea to ask for some expert advice. A stylist or interior designer can be able to give you some tailor-made help.
Here are more ideas on how to create a welcoming storefront.
2- Curb design
Designing a storefront is not only about the window display. Another essential feature is to use curbside or A-frame sidewalk signs.
These traditional adverts can still be a fantastic way to increase walk-ins. It can help to catch the eye of passersby. Especially people who don’t know about your business.
Choose a beautiful sign that will add to the aesthetic appeal of your store. You want it to reflect the general theme.
One important use of these signboards is in advertising your promotions. This is a fantastic method for communicating deals and sales to existing customers and potential new ones. They will know about any specials before even stepping foot in the store. It can really help draw people in.
We have all seen those really witty curb signs. These are the ones that stick in your memory. So try to make it funny. Put some personality into it.
3- Essential signs
You aren’t only limited to curb signage. There is a huge variety of promotional materials for you to choose from.
Here are just a few options for a small business:
You don’t necessarily have to choose just one. Some variety can be useful to mix it up.
Put up these signs in your area to let people know about your store. Learn more on your target audience and try to figure out where they are more likely to see these signs. This can play a part in choosing locations for the ads.
But just having signs aren’t necessarily enough. You need to think carefully about their design and look. Keep them simple. Choose your words carefully. And make them pleasing to the eye.
It can also be a great idea to update the signs on your building. If your signage is old and outdated, new signs can really increase walk-ins to your storefront. Remember that first impressions matter.
4- Online presence
So far we have covered a lot of the physical aspects of encouraging walk-ins. But nowadays this isn’t necessarily enough. It is not only about the physical storefront. You need to have an online presence as well. You need to show some tech savvy.
People are increasingly relying on the internet for information. This is where people turn to find out about products, services, and businesses. Because of this, chances are higher that people will visit a store they found online first.
If you have been avoiding digital so far, you might want to jump on the bus.
Keep in mind that you don’t have to create an online store to reap some of the benefits of digital. You can build your own website, join online listings or create social media pages for your business.
Here is some of the crucial information that you should put out there:
- Share the physical location of your store. Make sure that is has been pinned on Google maps to make it available at the touch of a button.
- Tell people about the products and services that you offer.
- Notify people about your promotions.
- Let customers know when you have new things on offer.
- Upload photos and videos that show off your storefront.
5- Social media marketing
Say what you want about them, but social media sites can be a fantastic tool in any businesses toolbox. If you manage them carefully, it can be a great way to increase traffic to your storefront.
You can also use it to help build your reputation. Sites like Facebook have a review feature where customers can rate their experiences. They can also post photos of their experiences with your business.
A key to social media marketing is to use it to keep people up to date on your storefront. Tell them about any news or changes to your store. Do you have new products? Have you renovated your space?
This can build up some hype and get people to talk about the company.
One tip is to use social media in your physical store. Work out a hashtag and use it in your store and your marketing materials. A prevalent trend is to create a selfie wall where people can take pictures and post them online.
You can create an entire strategy purely for your social media campaign.
6- Support other local businesses
Mom and Pop stores function best in a well-connected community. You can contribute to building this community by making connections with other local business.
With some teamwork, you can help make each other’s businesses’ grow.
The first step is getting to know other small business owners. Go visit their storefronts and tell them about your own. Try to build a positive and mutually supportive relationship.
If there isn’t one yet, you can also start a formal local business community. This can involve setting up a listing or directory. Or even hosting annual meetings. A meet and greet can be a great way to get this ball rolling.
This community can set the stage for collaboration. You can offer to put some ads or business cards in your store and ask them to do the same.
Another idea is to host events together. Work together to set up a market or something similar where you can showcase your products and services.
7- Smart promotions
A tried and tested method for attracting more customers to your storefront is to use specials and sales. But because promotions have become more common, be sure you use them strategically.
You could, for instance, work out event-related promotions like a sale for a National Mom and Pop Business Owners Day.
It is vital that you try to share any information about specials as widely as possible.
Once you have your social media pages set up, this is the ideal platform to tell people about any specials. These sites give you more exposure and a better chance to catch customers’ attention.
A great idea is to use promotions to encourage your audience to use your social media. For example, offer them a chance to win a hamper if they share an image of some of your products. Make this even more effective by asking them to share your hashtag.
8- Keep them coming
Although it is essential to connect to new potential customers, it is still crucial to keep your existing customers. They are the people that keep your business running. On top of this, they can help you to bring more traffic by spreading news of your store.
That is why you should prioritize trying to keep people coming back.
By offering consistent and high-quality services and products, you can make sure existing customers want to return. At the same time, you need to grow with the times and keep up with clients’ changing needs.
Also, ask yourself how you can reward customers for shopping at your store.
Nowadays, most box stores have a loyalty program. You can have one too. It doesn’t have to be complicated. You can work out a simple system. For example, give customers a free product for “x” amount of purchases.
9- Prioritize customer service
One of the fastest ways for a small business to flounder is if they have lousy customer service. News spreads fasts, and it doesn’t take much for your reputation to suffer. Therefore, it’s essential for any company to be customer focused.
As a matter of fact, because of the more personal nature of Mom and Pop business, your customer service can be even better than that of larger enterprises. This is what draws a lot of people to smaller stores.
They enjoy being greeted by the owner. Or by staff who they eventually get to know.
You and your staff need to be appropriately trained to provide the best customer service possible. Courtesy is key. They need to know how to greet and address customers. Your personnel also need to know how to handle possibly tense situations with unhappy clients.
Above all else, you need to show customers that you care about them and their experience.
Are you looking for more ways to create a buzz around your business?
Well, one of the most effective methods is to host some in-store events. This is a surefire way of getting people to notice your store and to start talking about it. It can help to put your storefront on the map.
The benefit of holding an event in-store is that it gives you the chance to bring customers to your physical location. Now that they know where it is, they’ll be able to visit more easily in the future.
Don’t worry, the event doesn’t need to be huge. The point is to create exposure for your brand. You want your customers to enjoy the experience and to build positive associations with the business.
If you feel a bit lost on what event to hold, here are a few types to consider:
- Opening: If you are just opening, or if your business is relatively new, this can be a creative way to kick it off. Hold some kind of event to celebrate the opening like a cocktail party or competition.
- Launch: Consider holding an event for new products or services especially if they have been much anticipated.
- Host a class: An excellent way to draw regular traffic is to host repeat classes that are relevant to your business.
- Holidays: You can also organize events to correspond with specific holidays.
Research what types of events are popular with your target audience. Find out what kinds of activities are typically held in your area. Look to see if there is a gap you can fill by holding the first event of its kind in the area.
Use this opportunity to showcase what makes your business unique and promote your products or services.
Small changes, big results
These steps can all help increas walk-ins to your small business storefront in Michigan. As you can see, not all of them require tons of effort. But this doesn’t mean they can’t be effective.
One critical strategy is undoubtedly to focus on advertisements. Take a look at Signarama’s selection of indoor and outdoor signs to promote your store. While you are at it, read up on the sign policies and ordinances in Detroit.
Business owners often make the mistake that any sign is better than no sign. But in today’s world advertisements are everywhere. It is easy for ads to get lost in the clutter.
Never fear! Experience has shown advertisers what can make your advertisement a hit or a miss.
If you apply these principles by carefully and plan out your signs, you are one step closer to success.
Designing the right graphics can be tricky. That is why we are giving you a breakdown of tips and tricks to creating effective signs for marketing.
#1 Keep it simple
The old cliche is still true that less is usually more. Simplicity is at the heart of designing successful and effective advertisements.
Well designed minimalist signs are often better at
- Grabbing attention
- Keeping attention
- Making an impact
- Being memorable
Often, attempts to make adverts exciting results in making them overly complicated. You don’t want people to be distracted by unnecessary details. Otherwise, they could miss the point of the sign.
Instead, you want your audience to be able to notice what the ad is about immediately.
The following are steps you can take to make your sign simple:
1- Bare necessities: Ask yourself if each element is absolutely necessary? Can your sign work without it? Throughout the conception and design, you should analyze whether each part is essential to the ad. This should be a continuous process to weed out any unnecessary clutter.
2- Quality over quantity: Instead of spending time on hundreds of elements, focus on a few and do them well. A few brilliant features will have much more impact than a mishmash of poorly defined ones. Try to make every small detail the best that it can be.
3- Be clever: Simple ads often stand out because they are smart. The designers find a way to do as much as possible with as little as possible. This is the time to get creative.
Keeping it simple can be a challenge. But it can have massive payoffs.
Unfortunately, businesses are often skeptical of whether a minimalist approach to advertising can work. If you still need to be convinced, take a look at these examples of super yet straightforward signs. They are striking and impactful.
#2 Color coding
Never underestimate the importance of color when you are designing an advert. Research has shown that this can have a significant impact on our moods and our responses to advertisements. As a matter of fact, entire theories have been designed for using color in advertising.
This is why you should select a color palette that matches the message of the sign. For example, green is associated with health and nature. So this is often a go-to color for healthy foods or products.
Don’t make the mistake of using colors that are too similar. Writing can quickly become lost against the background of the ad. So you need to use color carefully to create a contrast.
If your branding uses specific colors, you should try to focus on them. Or at least include them somewhere on the sign where they will be visible.
Very legible combinations are black on white, white on blue and black on yellow.
#3 Easy to read
We have all seen those signs which are virtually impossible to read. No matter how hard you try, you just can’t make out the words. This isn’t only frustrating to the audience. It can turn into a marketing disaster.
If the audience can’t read, they don’t know what the ad is about. Therefore, the sign failed in its purpose.
Illegibility is one mistake that you really want to avoid. If people need to strain to read it, they are probably going to skip it. Their eyes will instead wander to something else.
Luckily, it isn’t too tricky to get right.
Different factors influence whether you can read a sign or not. The following are the primary ones:
- Font: It’s essential to use a well thought out professional font on your sign. You don’t want to use one with too much ornamentation. The focus should be on finding a font that is simple and legible.
- Size: The typeface needs to be large enough to read. You shouldn’t need to squint. The words might look great up close but be impossible to make out once it is up.
- Spacing: You should pay attention to spacing. The closer letters are too each other, the harder they are to read.
- Amount of words: It is not only about the font and size but also about the number of words. Ads are much more difficult to read if there are too many words. People don’t want to spend too much time reading. So try to keep it as concise as possible.
- Words: You want a wide variety of people to be able to skim your sign. It works best to keep the words short and uncomplicated.
- Contrast: The color of the writing should stand out against its background.
#4 Think big
Another vital feature of creating an effective sign is to look at its size. You need to consider its dimensions carefully.
People often forget that the sign needs to be visible from a distance. Details of advertisements often get lost if you see them from far away.
To find the appropriate size for your sign, you need to have an idea of where you want to place it. Yes, you can just scale up dimensions for different spots. But this won’t necessarily always work. It usually works best to tailor-make the ad.
Imagine a sign on a building. It has to be seen from the ground, from the building across the road and sometimes from even farther away. The dimensions of these boards are usually set out to serve this particular purpose.
As we’ve said, choosing a font size is a crucial aspect of design. But this isn’t the only factor to look at. Any graphics or images also need to be visible.
Remember that size is even more critical in locations where the audience doesn’t have much time to look. For example, signs on the highway should be much, and the audience needs to understand its message much quicker.
The general rule of thumb is that the bigger it is, the higher the chance is that it will be noticed.
#5 Brand it
Consistency is crucial throughout a business, but especially when it comes to marketing. That doesn’t mean it needs to be boring. However, customers need to be able to recognize that the advert is yours.
This is where branding comes in. Effective signs, like other forms of advertising, are an extension of your brand. Therefore, it needs to reflect this in some way.
The key is that the audience should be able to recognize your brand immediately. Promotions often only hold people’s attention for a little while. So you want them to grasp what business the sign is about. This will also help to draw the attention of people who are familiar with your company.
Secondly, If they can recognize the brand people are more likely to act on the sign. Whether it is promoting a product, service, or event.
Keep in mind that you don’t have to include every aspect of your brand. The following are examples of features that you can use from your brand:
- Color palette
- The font you use.
- If your logo is well known, you can include it. But otherwise, it might take up too much space.
- Your motto or tagline
- Photos of your product or service
Branding is a central part of your business identity. It is essential that you create a coherent brand that portrays your message. Here is more information on the basics of branding your business.
#6 Sending a message
One trick to designing excellent signs is to formulate a clear message. This is basically the goal of the advertisement.
Do you want to create exposure for your brand? Is the aim to create awareness about a specific issue? Or do you want to sell a product?
It is easy to include too much information on the sign. But this can work to your detriment. You don’t want to confuse your target audience and leave people unsure about what the ad is actually promoting. That is why you want to keep the message concise and specific.
You shouldn’t try to include everything on one board. Instead, pick one specific product or service to advertise. Choose one that will be striking – like something new, something that is unique to your company, or one of your most popular items.
The sign isn’t there to give customers all the information about your business or product. Its goal is to attract their attention and to spark interest.
All of the design features should be focused on conveying the message. Everything from the color, to the font, are part of highlighting its purpose.
#7 Light it up
To light, or not to light?
The answer to this question depends on your specific advertisement and its location. It won’t work everywhere and can be a bit expensive. But if you use it well, it can make a huge difference.
Lighting can help to catch people’s attention. It is particularly useful if you want people to see the sign in the dark or even be able to read it at night. Billboards next to highways are usually lit up for his purpose.
Experts know how to use lights to highlight specific features on board. You don’t necessarily have to light up the whole thing but can shine it on particular parts.
Another option is to use lightboxes or LED signs. With these, the whole sign will be made from light. This usually works best to indicate a place.
In general, lighted signs are only used outdoors or in windows.
#8 Location, location, location
You need to remember that design isn’t the only part of making your signs effective. Advertisers need to carefully consider where the final product is going to be displayed.
You might not know the precise spot beforehand. But you should try to get a general idea. Experts know that the location is going to impact how a sign should be designed. Making sure that it is going to be suitable is vital.
If it’s placed in an unsuitable location, the success of the sign diminishes. And in the worst case scenario, you might be restricted from putting up the sign at all.
Many areas have local rules about what signs are allowed and what not. This can involve the size, shape, and content.
Besides these regulations, you want to make sure that the advert is going to stand out. Try to design it to look unique in its location.
You might not be able to place one sign in a variety of places. Designing several versions of the same ad can be helpful. They can resemble each other but can be customized to suit different locations.
Ask yourself who should see the sign? In what area is your target audience? Where will you get the most exposure? Will it stand out in the environment? Is it going to clash with its surroundings?
Here is a list of possible locations for a sign:
- Next to roads or highways
- Over or above roadways and highways
- In a yard
- On vehicles
- Bus stops
- Train stations
- Business windows
- On a building
In the end, you should try to choose a place with excellent visibility that gets a lot of traffic.
Close the deal with effective signs
Signs are an important puzzle piece in any marketing campaign. These tips and tricks lay out fundamental principles in the advertising industry. They can help you to design effective signs that will put your product in the spotlight.
Once you have chosen your design, you should hire a company to help you print them. Take a look at the types of signs that we offer at Signarama.