Five Ways Signage Supports Your Brand

For people driving on interstates and rural highways or walking on busy urban streets, your signage is your brand. Same goes for the indoor signs that your customers see as they move about your premises. People are making snap judgements about your business based entirely on the visual clues they pick up. About 80% of what we humans learn about the world around us is due to visual perception. How your audience sees you matters.

There is tremendous opportunity with the way you use the visual and material elements of your signage to make dramatic and, just as importantly, subtle impressions on your customers. The signs you deploy are more than just words or pictures on a board. They are that very important first impression. A 2012 by the Economic Center of the University of Cincinnati  found roughly 60% of businesses reported that changing the design or enhancing the visibility of their signage had a positive impact on sales, number of transactions and profits, with an average increase of about 10%. 

Here are five ways you can optimize and execute cost-effective, high ROI strategies to make signage support your brand:

Put the Customer First

Your signage should give your audience the exact information they need to understand how you will solve their problem, while impressing your brand through visual cues from design elements, colors, and even the types of materials you use to create your sign. Your signs should meet the expectations of your audience and give them a reason to trust you with their business.  With a limited time to get their attention, if you’re not providing value with your messaging or your sign is cluttered, difficult to read, or fails to catch your customer’s attention, you may never have the same opportunity again. Professionally produced signs that look good make you stand out to your audience. A study by the Small Business Administration (SBA) found that effective signs can increase business by as much as 150%.

Integrate into Omnichannel

Signs can be big and bold declarations about who you are, and you can be sure your signage will be seen. However, you often have only moments to make it stand out from the competition and create a memorable impression. That’s why it’s important to understand your audience and how to communicate your value quickly and get them to engage with you further. When placed strategically your signage should impel your customer to take the next step, whether it’s a visit to your establishment or website. That’s one reason signage works so well as a component of omnichannel marketing strategies. According to a study by Nielsen, signage can increase the effectiveness of other media by as much as 42%. 

Use Quality Materials

You have a wide range of choices of materials to express your brand’s personality, style and commitment to quality. Your signage also must often endure and continue to represent your brand against the elements and be sourced and constructed following environmentally sound practices. This last point may be surprising, but sustainability matters to shoppers. According to a FirstInsight report, roughly two-thirds of Millennials and Generation Z shoppers surveyed prefer to buy from sustainable brands.

Whether you chose coreflute, foamcore, aluminum, acrylic, wood, or vinyl sheets for vehicle wraps depends on your goals, budget, and audience. However, it is not an area to cut corners. A four-year study by the International Sign Association found that an average of one-third of all shoppers say they have been drawn into unfamiliar stores based on the quality of their signs.

Be Brief but Effective

You might be familiar with the term ‘elevator pitch’, which describes the brief time someone has to get a point across in an elevator before it reaches the top floor. Here’s a new one to consider “signage pitch’, which describes the unique way you can blend graphics, colors, and text to sear your brand into the memory of your audience in a matter of moments. Some of the most memorable billboard marketing campaigns were no more than one compelling photo or graphic and a one or two-word catchphrase. It’s a good time to remember that a picture, or in many cases a great graphic, speaks a thousand words and it can simply and immediately tell your audience why they should spend their time and money with you.

Display Your Confidence

Promoting your brand with signage is no time to be shy. You’re putting it out there for the world, or at least your audience, to see. Use your signage to make a statement. You can project an aura of prestige and show your customers that professionalism matters through the quality of your signage. Come across as modern and creative with customized illuminated and digital signs that keep your messaging relevant. Your customers want to know that of all the choices they can make, your brand is the one they can trust. Use your signage to proudly proclaim what it is that makes your brand special and get off to a great start with your audience.

Signage is meant to communicate messages to audiences, but with a sound strategy, it can be so much more. It’s often the first instance your customer may come into contact with your brand, and making a great initial impression matters. The visual elements, as well as the materials you use, play a large role in the perceptions about your brand that will affect whether or not your customer believes you have the solutions they need.