by Paul Friend, Friendly Consultancy of Derby, find me on google+

As much as online marketing like facebook, twitter, web design is very effective it is only part of the customer journey, where you business has a physical presence like a shop or a bar. It can be extremely easy to over look the importance of good signs and signage and how that signage continues to reinforce your brand image and marketing communications.

Have you set up a new company or do you have an established business. You will have had received lots of helpful advice on writing your business plan, obtaining finance, employment law and even how to handle customer relations. What about information about why you need a sign for your business?

The value of a quality premises signage cannot be overstated but, surprisingly, its potential as a marketing tool is often not fully realised. Many businesses barely think of signs at all and, if they do, it is often an afterthought, a necessary expense which seems to command the lowest portion of any construction or refurbishment budget!

Yet the CEO of one mainstream retailer recently confided to the British Sign & Graphics Association that he regarded his company’s signage as its most important and cost effective advertising medium, claiming that it can be used accurately to reflect what customers can expect to find within his stores, as well as providing them with some idea of the overall company ethos.

Companies who understand the value of good signage view it as an investment that will pay for itself many times over. They know that a well designed, well placed sign can attract customers and generate profits. Also, when signage is part of an overall marketing strategy, the increase in revenue is even greater.

So, what are the elements of good signage? What do you need to know before buying a sign? Where do you get one? How can you reap the benefits signage offers? Most importantly, how can you maximize those benefits for your business?

Firstly, signage should not be a mere afterthought. The sign on your business is a powerful and sophisticated marketing tool. It works for you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year; to succeed in today’s evermore competitive marketplace you need your signs to work for you. It’s the first impression of your business that many customers get, it tells them who you are, where you are and what you offer.

In short, as our colleagues at the International Sign Association say, ‘your sign is your voice on the street’. It’s your primary means of communicating with customers; it attracts them, draws them through your doors, and encourages them to buy your products and services.

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