Posts Tagged ‘advertising’

No matter if you are a new start up business, relocating an existing business or just needing a face-lift, Signs are always an afterthought. I have reviewed many architectural or building drawings of for new business developments and guess what they all have in common. No plan or budget allotment for signage.

Most recently was a church in southern Minnesota. They worked for years to raise funding and financing for their new facility, to the tune of over $3.5 million. Budget was very tight, so the general contractor had to follow the project plan to the letter and manage the costs to the penny. Suddenly the city was asking to see their plans for highway signage and parking lot directional signage. suddenly the light came on and not one dollar had been budgeted for signage.

Well the project came to a complete stop. Plans had to cover vehicle traffic in a safe matter. Then there was Handicap Parking Signs, door signs of cut vinyl for hours and emergency contacts. Interior signs included ADA, Rest Rooms, Elevator operation, Floor Plan Maps, so on and so on, the list continued. Suddenly they were over $40,000 and no plan for payment. Major delays on the project to say the least.

photo, pylon sign, sign repair, lighted sign, flat double sided

Double sided Pylon Sign

If your potential customers have this view as they pass your business, what do you think will happen?

There are basically two purposes of a sign. 

1 – Attract attention, … or

2 – Deliver a message

If you haven’t planned for signage or the proper signage given your situation, you are doing neither. May not sound like that big of a deal, you can always add signs once you have the money, Right? Maybe not the best choice. Remember this, a sign can increase sales by an average of 35%, over the same business without proper signage.

Starting up, moving or running a business can push your available time and attention beyond your breaking point. Engaging a professional sign company like Pillar Signs can offer a great advantage. Project Schedules and budgets can be met, competitive advantages achieved with a focused professional signage. You might even be able to gain a few hours to focus on running your business.

If this is what your business looks like, maybe you should rethink your strategy. Something to think about, McDonalds actually has all of their signs on order before they even break ground and start building. Why do you think that is? Signs pay!

Image of Store Front

Business Store Front

Don’t make signs an afterthought, is needs to be part of your business plan and we can help you with the planning, design and installation.

Odd angling can sometimes boost a signs readership, but why and when would this apply?

  • What is the sign setback from the highway or point of view?
  • Is the traffic walking or driving and if so, what speed are the normally traveling?
  • How long will the potential viewer have to read your sign?
  • Is your sign near an intersection or point where traffic could be static at times?

photo, pylon sign, sign repair, lighted sign, flat double sided

There are many considerations, but by researching the angle at which a sign first becomes legible, the “viewing window”, optimum placement angle becomes clearer. This involves viewing the proposed sign installation at whatever angle potential users of will see it. Always angle signs towards their sight lines. With most installations, the difference an odd angled sign would make in view ability is slight, but there are instances where an odd angled sign would catch the sight lines and attention of passersby better than others.The cost of materials and labor will most likely be higher. You’ll need more framing, structural support, foundations, etc, but in most if not all cases, placing a sign at an angle enables them to be seen by more people, for longer periods of time.

Not convinced yet…Try holding an image angled like a sign might be placed if you were driving down the road. now move image you are holding to an angle as a sign flat against a building would be. Next hold it off to the side at a 90-degree angle to the “road” where a regular ground sign would be. Finally, hold it off to the side at a 45-degree angle to the “road”. It might not be as easy to read as if you were right in front of you, but doesn’t it seem to be the best option?

Now that you feel comfortable with this new knowledge, lets add another element with LED Message Centers. LED’s have built in viewing angles, which means they project light and color at preset fixed angles. From straight forward, common angles to each side will be listed in degrees.

When Electronic Message Centers or “EMC’s” as they are referred to, are installed within say 50 to 60 feet from a roadway, no angle is necessary. In other words, perpendicular to the adjacent roadway.

electronic message center, angled installation

Angled Sign Installation

Now lets say your sign is 100 ft. from the roadway and traffic is moving at 55 MPH. With a sign perpendicular to the highway, your potential customers will have 3 to 5 seconds at most to view your message. Put it at an angle as shown in this image? Viewing time could be increased to 7 to 10 seconds. doesn’t sound like much time? With the proper message, that is all you need. Proper message is another subject covered in another blog.

Almost weekly I have been asked to supply CLEAR Stickers or Decals. The first question I have is How will the stickers or decals be used? What is the color of the item they will be applied to? Generally the color to which they are mounted to has to be a light neutral color, preferably white.

Colors need to be backed up with white or the printed graphics and text colors will bleed out and take on the background colors. Basically with any sign, vehicle graphics or even a banner, has to isolate and/or support the colors intended. All efforts of color matching and color management will be a waste of time and effort on clear medias or substrates.

If you look closely at clear decals or stickers, there will be generally a halo of white around the images printed text. Even though it appears to be clear, additional costs of materials and equipment have been incurred, to apply a detailed layout of white ink first.

So remember, a clear background on a sticker, decal, vehicle graphic or other signage, does not necessarily relate to lower cost. a contour or detailed die cut on a white media may offer the best unit costing long-term.

Of course a website is not always a primary requirement for every business. This can depend on your products and services you offer, including your Target Markets, demographics and other key Marketing or strategic factors. As for Pillar Signs and Graphics Inc. our business is very visual and driven by emotion and impulse.

Being a visual and graphics based company, a quality website with cool and colorful graphics is very important. Potential clients need to see examples of projects, to help make that decision to make that initial contact. After which may come a showroom visit or an in person visit at their location to further solidify the project details.

Lets back up a second and look at how the website can help us. We support businesses and individuals for that matter, all over the lower 48 states and Canada for that matter. A quality website needs to attract our potential clients, based on pre-determined potential search options. These are known as keywords or phrases the web searcher is looking for, hopefully matching key words we have used and loaded into our website. Banners, Vehicle Graphics, Fleet Graphics, Window graphics are a few examples.

So what is the relevance and timing of this message? Pillar Signs has actually had a couple of website versions over the past couple years. They did the job, somewhat, but as the people and internet grows and develops, so must our website to keep pace. This also includes mobile devises from smart phones to iPad, so stay tuned we will talk on this capability at a later date.

So we are proud to announce that our new website has just gone live. It is really cool! Thanks to our new Webmaster Jeremy Anderson at Minneapolis Web Marketing. Check Jeremy out at http://www.minneapoliswebmarketing.com to start you new technology journey.

Here is the website link:     Pillar Signs and Graphics Website

Happy Web Surfing!!!!

Yes, it needs to be said. Banners are wonderful. Easy to make, easy to put up, easy to take down, easy, easy, easy. However, they are far from permanent. If a company has a quality product and they have a ratty banner as their store front, how does that affect the customers urge to buy from that company? To be honest it takes a good sign for me to enter and receive services from an establishment that has bad signage.

Banners are made from a material that can withstand the elements for a short amount of time, they can fade, crack, rip, bend, etc. Some companies will put wind slits in the banner to help with the wind force, but that isn’t a save all. You are cutting into a material and sometimes the wind slits will rip the banner even more. Same method used to make paper tear, with small cuts called perforations. The banner will tear in those locations.

In windy locations, use a mesh type material that will allow 36% of the air to pass through the banner. It will increase the banner life in windy locations, while presenting a good image detail. Something to consider, before allowing your sign company to cut banner wind-slots in your perfectly new banner.

Best thing? Keep the banner for advertising short-term sales, events, etc. Make your statement about your business with a high quality sign that you can be proud of for years to come. There is a sign for every purpose and a reputable sign company can help you with those decisions.