Sign Posts - The OSA Blog

5 Reasons Why Outdoor Signs Are the Best Way to Advertise Your Business

The success of your business depends on advertising. Whether you own a well-established local company or just opened your first location, you need customers to know about your business and visit your store. For most small businesses, traditional forms of advertising are too expensive, time intensive, and hard to manage. But marketing your business doesn’t have to be complicated. Discover why outdoor signs are the easiest and most inexpensive advertising method your company can deploy.

  1. The Most Cost-Effective Form of Advertising

In comparison to television, magazine, radio, and billboard ads, your business gains the same amount of exposure for far less with outdoor signage. Recent changes in consumer behavior (e.g., broadcast television to Netflix; decline in print readership) have led to a decline in exposure to traditional media, but outdoor business signs continue to be one of the most effective forms of advertising. With print and digital advertising, refreshing your marketing message is a repeated expense that’s often costly. But for a one-time only cost, outdoor signs offer limitless possibilities for quick and easy message changes.

  1. Shown to Increase Profitability

According to a study by the University of San Diego, “the addition of even one on-premise sign resulted in an increase in annual sales of 4.75%. [For example,] if a business had been grossing $500,000 annually in sales, the addition of just one on-premise sign resulted in a $23,750 increase.” One reason for this is an increase in unplanned impulse stops. The Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) estimates that these stops account for 20% to 45% of traffic for many businesses. With outdoor signage it’s easy to encourage drivers to stop by your business, whether they planned to or not. Display enticing sales and limited-time offers on your LED or changeable letter signs, and change messages out often to give consumers new incentive to enter your doors.

  1. Fast Update of Marketing Messages

Need to create awareness about your newest product or an upcoming sale? With other traditional forms of advertising it will take weeks—even months—before your business can spread the message. Changeable letter signs and outdoor LED Signs offer you the ability to make quick, on-demand changes, so you can reach your audience the moment you’re ready and for no extra cost. Our flexible, non-flexible, and sidewalk sign letters are durable, yet simple to switch out, taking only minutes to replace. And with sidewalk signs, you can easily substitute wording with graphics, or create your own lettering with write-on/wash-off chalkboard and wet-erase outdoor signs.

  1. Quickly Builds Brand Awareness

Thousands of motorists probably pass your business every few months, it’s likely that number is even higher. Are they familiar with your company? Do they know about your products or services? Brand an outdoor identification sign with your logo and name, and consumers will quickly notice and remember your business. The more exposure your brand has, the better customers will be able to recall your unique offerings. And they’ll know exactly where to go when the need for your products or services arise.

  1. A Versatile, Easy-to-Transport Signage Solution

Setting up a booth at a local festival or fair? Easily transport sidewalk signs to any indoor or outdoor event, and draw more prospects to your exhibit. Want to test the impact of your sign’s location? Dual-sided flashing arrow signs garner the attention of inbound and outbound traffic, plus their lightweight construction allows for effortless portability. Position your signage in a way that takes full advantage of your sign’s double-faced design, in a location free from obstruction and clearly visible to drivers. Tailoring outdoor signs to meet your business’ needs is easy with Outdoor Signs of America.

Find the perfect outdoor changeable letter signs and indoor/outdoor LED signs for your business from Outdoor Signs of America. Shop now, or contact us.

Posted in Uncategorized By Lyman Perrine

How to Market Your Business During the Holidays

The holidays are quickly approaching, and with it comes big profits for businesses that plan ahead and use inventive ways to entice shoppers to buy. According to the National Retail Federation, “20 to 40 percent of yearly sales for small and mid-sized retailers take place within the last two months of the year,” meaning what happens during the holidays has the ability to make or break your small business. Luckily, it isn’t too late to make your holiday sales strategy a successful one. Increase foot traffic and boost sales with our creative marketing tips for the holiday season.

  1. Participate in Small Business Saturday

This year marks the fifth anniversary of Small Business Saturday—and while this “shopping holiday” is new in its conception, its influence continues to grow as more consumers seek to “shop local.” Last year, the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) reported that “88 million consumers ‘shopped small’ on the day, up 14.9 percent” from 2013. So how can your business get in on the action? Use the hashtags #ShopSmall and #SmallBusinessSaturday to make your store part of the conversation, and encourage customers to tout your business using this hashtag as well. Program your outdoor LED sign with language that makes passerby aware of your participation, and reap the benefits as holiday shoppers flood your store.

  1. Offer Holiday Promotions and Giveaways

During the holidays, consumers look for ways to save on gifts for friends and family. If your business doesn’t join the holiday sales train, it risks going unnoticed. Let shoppers know about promotions and giveaways via email, direct mail, social media, and outdoor signage to ensure your message gets out. When “on the hunt” for the perfect holiday gift, consumers are more likely to shop in stores they’ve never previously entered than during any other time of the year—especially if a deal is offered. So this is your chance to reach a new audience and build a larger customer base.

  1. Host an In-Store Holiday Event

Set your small business apart from big box retailers by hosting a special event/open house in your store. While guests browse your gift selections, offer them hot cocoa, gingerbread cookies, and other seasonal treats to put shoppers in the holiday spirit. Before the event, create buzz on social media and with outdoor signs to guarantee it’s the “can’t-miss” party in your community. In addition, use this opportunity to capture email and/or mailing addresses, so you can continue your relationship with customers throughout the year.

  1. Be Active in Your Community

The success of your small business depends on community buy-in, and during the holidays, there’s hundreds of opportunities to garner their support. Start a canned food drive or register to be a Toys for Tots drop-off location. Your philanthropic efforts will not only establish your business as an integral part of the community, but will also bring consumers into your store. With your LED sign, promote community-wide holiday events, including high school band/choir performances, tree lightings, and more. The support you show for the local community will be reciprocated tenfold.

Get your small business ready for the holiday season with outdoor changeable letter signs and indoor/outdoor LED signs from Outdoor Signs of America. Shop now or contact us today!

Posted in Uncategorized By Lyman Perrine

The ABC's of Quality Signage

Think about it.  There are thousands of people who've never been to your door.  The sign on your premises is your handshake with the public, and that handshake is the first impression being made on potential customers.  Often, people judge the quality of your business on that first impression.

  • What is your sign saying to them?
 
  • Is it a blur of crowded text and graphics, illegible to drivers as they motor past your store?
 
  • Does it readily and effectively tell passersby what you offer, or does it make sense only to you and your employees?
 
  • Is your sign illuminated effectively?
 
  • Is it being regularly maintained?
 
  • What role is it playing in your business?
 

Ideally, signs should perform at least these three functions:

  • Attract new customers

  • Brand your site in the minds of consumers

  • Create "impulse" sales

Visit us at outdoorsignsamerica.com to learn more about how our products can make a difference for your organization.

1-800-239-9990  www.outdoorsignsamerica.com

Posted in Uncategorized By Lyman Perrine

The Cost Effectiveness of Signage

On-premise signage should be considered part of your overall advertising theme – TV and radio spots, a website, Internet advertising, newspaper or magazine ads, and so on.  Like any advertising medium, the value of a sign to your business depends on its ability to effectively communicate its message to prospective customers.  To make money, you’ll have to spend money – especially on advertising.

The advertising industry traditionally relies on four measures to assess the effectiveness of the money spent on advertisement.  These methods are: Reach, Readership, Frequency, and Cost per thousand exposures.

  • Reach: This measurement addresses the types of consumers exposed to the advertiser’s message.

 

  • Readership: Determining readership is a way of learning whether or not your sign is successfully branding its intended message in the mind of consumers. Can someone who sees your sign recall it message hours or days after having seen it?  When viewed, is there recognition of your product or service in the mind of that person?

 

  • Frequency: This measurement calculates the number of times a viewer, reader or listener is exposed to the advertiser’s message. Frequency measures are hard to determine for sign owners – particularly those who own on-premise signs.  Many drivers pass by your site.  Some see your sign only once, while other – who might live or work nearby – see your sign regularly.  Traffic counts identify the number of vehicles that travel a particular stretch of road; these should be factored into your calculations.

 

  • Cost per thousand exposures: This measurement refers to the cost for an advertiser to send a message (or “exposures”) to 1,000 receivers. The measure is calculated by dividing the amount of money spent for a given advertisement by the number of people exposed to it over a given period of time.

 

Calculating comparable costs per 1,000 exposures for advertising media relies on frequency measure.  Once a frequency figure is obtained, then the total out-of-pocket cost for the medium – in our case, the sign – is divided by the number of exposures occurring during a defined time period.  Based on this measure, signs are usually considered to be the least expensive form of advertising.

Typical_Cost

For example, imagine that you have a set amount – say, $16,500 – to spend on advertising.  You’ve narrowed down your options to four: TV, newspaper, outdoor advertising (a.k.a. billboards) or an on-premise sign.  You’ve done your research, and learned that for $16,500, each option is capable of reaching a different number of people.  How efficient, though, would the exposures be over a 30-day period? And how would they compare to one another? Below is a table that answers that question:

The actual cost of your on-premise sign will vary greatly, depending on several factors: size, the materials used in construction, the sophistication of the text or graphics, the region of the country, etc.  The $16,500 figure used about is for demonstration purposes, and isn’t meant to imply that this is what you’ll actually spend. From the above media cost evaluations, one can quickly note that the on-premise sign provides exposure of its message to a large pool of potential customers at a fraction of the cost of other media.

 

Here’s how you can calculate a cost per thousand exposures for your own sign:

  • How much do you plan to spend for your on-premise sign?
  • Presume the life of your sign is 12 years, or 144 months. (If you plan to work with a professional sign company, they will be expert at gauging the estimated life of your sign. If they are involved, use the estimate they provide instead.) Use that time frame for depreciation period in step #3.
  • Take your answer in #1 and divide it by 144 (or the duration per your sign company). The answer shows your sign’s cost per month.
  • How many cars pass by your trade area daily? (If the transportation department does not track this information, a local billboard or sign company may be able to help.)
  • Multiply the number of cars per day times 30 to obtain a monthly estimate.
  • Divide the answer in #5 by 1,000. This provides your monthly gross impressions in thousands.
  • Divide #3 by #6 to determine your cost per thousand exposures. Look at your cost per thousand exposures.  Determine how much advertising you would need to purchase in other media to obtain the same number of effective consumer exposures. Is there a more affordable advertising option than on-premise signage for your business?

 

Impact of Signage on Profitability

We’ve just analyzed the cost-effectiveness of on-premise signage.  What about its impact on your profit line?

In 1997, the California Electric Sign Association and the International Sign Association published results of a survey commissioned from the University of California – San Diego.  The survey was a two-part study of on-premise signage performance.  Part 1 of the study measured the impact of several variables (including signage, location, hours of operation, population density, and geographic characteristics) on sales at each of 162 southern California locations of a fast-food chain.  The results of Part 1 showed that the number of signs at a particular site had a significant and positive impact on both annual sales and the number of annual customer transactions.

Noteworthy findings from the 1997 CESA study include:

  • On average, one additional on-premise sign resulted in an increase in annual sales revenues of 4.75%.
  • On average, on additional on-premise sign increased the annual number of transactions by 3.94%.
  • On average, one additional 36-square-foot wall sign added $0.06 per transaction, while one additional 144-square-foot pole sign added $0.78 per transaction.
  • When new signage was added on previously unsigned sides of buildings sales increased from 2.5% to 7.1%.
  • A new pole sign with the firm’s name impacted revenues from 4.9% to 12.3%. Such signs effectively reached passing traffic.  Researchers attributed this increase to enhanced visibility of the store’s new sign to passing traffic.
  • Small, reflective directional signs increased revenues as well. These signs aid shoppers in finding entrance and exit routes.  The impact of these sign increased weekly sales from 4.0% to 12.4%.

 

Source: “What’s Your Signage?: How On-Premise Signs Help Small Business Tap Into a

Hidden Profit Center”

A Handbook Developed by

The NewYork State Small Business Development Cneter

Albany, New York

www.nyssbdc.org

Edited by EBSCO Sign Group

Posted in Uncategorized By Lyman Perrine

3 Tips on How to Effectively Use Your Sign

Signs are one of the most effective ways to reach out to your local community.  Whether you are a church hoping to reach out to new potential members, a school trying to communicate with parents, or a business trying to bring in new customers, these tips to using your outdoor signage will help you accomplish this quickly and easily.

 

Keep Messages Short and Sweet

Think about the speed of traffic passing by your sign.  How long will the average driver have to look at your sign?  Typically, a person passing your sign will only see one portion of your message – so make the entire message count!  Remember to use letters that are proportionate to the size of your sign and speed of passing traffic so that the message is easy to read.

Speak to Your Audience

Think about the types of people that will see your message.  For instance, the audience driving by a school is a typically parent dropping a student off, so communicate messages about reports cards going home, parent meetings or an open house.  The audience passing a business is a potential consumer of your products or services, so display messages advertising sales or events. Create messages with your audience in mind and those reading your sign will feel more connected since the message is pertaining to them and no one else.

Change It Up Regularly

 Change your message as often as possible.  People driving by your sign look forward to seeing a new message and the less you change it, the less they will pay attention to what your organization has to offer.  Also, make sure to keep your changeable letters updated and new.  Your sign and its message are a reflection of the type of organization you have and what is happening inside.  Keep your sign and letters clean and you are sure to attract more attention from those passing by.

Signs are great communication tools for any type of organization.  They are the most cost-effective way to advertise to those driving by, especially when messages are simple, clear and concise.  Contact Outdoor Signs America today to learn more on how to effectively use your sign.

Call or Visit Us Online to Learn More

1-800-239-9990 www.outdoorsignsamerica.com

Posted in Uncategorized By Lyman Perrine

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