Archive for the ‘Lobby Sign’ Category

On a recent expedition by our installers, nerves and patience were tested. The plan was to install a rather large interior wall graphics, that of course had to be supplied by the franchisor. The franchisee was instructed, “Do NOT attempt this installation, hire professionals to install this wall graphics.” Would this be a Red Flag? We had to bid this installation sight unseen, raising yet another “red flag”. Not sure of what we were gettining into, the only option we had was to price this out based on actual hours.

Once approved by the client, we moved ahead with scheduling the installation. Our team arrived, set up and prepared to dig in. As soon as we opened the box we knew there would be challenges. The material and graphics were rolled backwards, with the image in and paper carrier outside. Caution: This causes the vinyl to “Tent” or buckle every couple of feet, resulting in the vinyl curling and refusing to lay flat. Suddenly it required four hands to install each panel rather than two hands.

Now we started to remove the paper backing, exposes the adhesive side of the wallpaper. Instant tearing and cracking with normal handling, REALLY? It was also apparent we were not dealing with a vinyl or even paper here, but a low cost Korean PVC substrate with a clear overspray. At this point frustration was setting in, and I’m sure this stuff was never going to survive the inside corner we have to navigate. We had planned and scheduled for one afternoon and unfortunately, we had to return the next day to finish the wall Mural installation.

So, was this lower cost graphics really result lower cost overall? A simple 4 hour installation, actually ending up taking 9 hours. The additional labor cost resulting from working with inferrior products, almost equaled that of a quality American made material, installed. Things are not always as they appear, so it is important to look at the whole cost picture and not just the surface.

One thing I forgot to mention was removal. When this stuff has to be removed, the costs will surely be more than the orginal installation. So was this really a good deal?

The reality of it all in the sign world is, that there are two different kinds of signs. Indoor and Out-Door. There are big differences in each and each in their own can be broken down into sub categories to which application is the best fit.

As a rule, indoor signage can last a lot longer than outdoor. Mainly do to the fact that indoor signs don’t have the elements to contend with. Outdoor signs have to be built, designed, and produced to withstand many different types of environments. Rain, wind, snow, sleet, sun…some types of signs won’t last very long outdoors even if you do everything properly.

Indoor signs last a lot longer if the traffic and amount of contact from public are held to a minimum. If an indoor sign is constantly being bumped, hit, skimmed, etc it’s not going to last as long. Don’t get me wrong, there are preventative measures to assure longer life to those high traffic areas.

However, nothing lasts forever and your signs need should be evaluated on an “as needed” basis.

Most Sign Specials can be opportunities, driven by Seasonal Markets, Activities or local special events. With any potential opportinity can be a narrow window, to get on board, or miss the potential big wave of revenue. No matter is your business is Retail, Service, Recreational or one of many other markets, there are special events and cycles you need to take advantage of.

First step is to identifiy what you are trying to promote. Is it a Product, Service or Promotional Activity? Next, who is your target audience, how will you reach that audience and finally, trigger that impulse to buy? Sounded rather simple until you start looking at all the detail, didn’t it? Not as bad as it appears, once you get started.

Once the ground work is in place, no wyou can finally determine what type of signage will best fit your application. Generally this will be a short term program, so banners, posters, A-Frames and window signs will be the first choices. There are many other options, including Floor Graphics or hanging signage can be a real eye-catching surprise.

Last point to remember? Never start your special or promotion too early. Rule of thumb is, never advertise more than three weeks before the start of your program. Fact is, short term signage can blend into the background, after three static weeks with no change.

Dimensional Sign - Before

Before Makeover

Most people don’t realize that over 90% of all signs are interior. Exterior signs are generally designed to attract attention, where interior signs are desined more for selling something. Example would be a point of sale or POS signage. Look at McDonald’s Golden Arches on a pylon along the highway, to grab your attention while driving along. Once inside, here comes the Menu Board, Dynamic Message Center with all the coffee choices and of course the color pictures of food that you just can’t resist.

Another role of interior signs are to present an image, or maybe quality, service, your brand, environment and even your culture. Businesses evolve over time, resulting in signage becoming obsolete or even dated in design, color or construction.  In the before picture above, the colors and lobby sign were totally acceptable when it was designed and installed a few years back. But like every thing from clothing to cars, unless it’s a classic, it will become out dated.

Financial One Credit Union, recently went through a complete makeover of their Columbia Heights MN location. Colors, tiles, carpet were all redone into a warmer more inviting environment. Soon after the initial renovations took place, it was obvious the old crown jewel of a lobby sign was in need of a complete makeover.

The “After” picture below was the end result. Individual Dimensional Letters were routed in brushed gold finish, mounted to the wall with studs. Each letter was individually mounted and spaced off the wall 1/2″ for added depth and character. The end result was dramatic, bold and refreshing. Signs are not forever and do need to be changed, before your customer recognizes your signs need to be changed. Call us now to review all the cool new options.

Dimensional Letters - Lobby Signs

Lobby Sign – After