By Laura Woodhouse

Signage can be one of the most effective marketing tools a business has, so how can its potential be maximized? It is important to think of signage as being an extension of PR – only it is PR working twenty-four hours a day. This means it is vital that it does a good job. In today’s guest blog from Laura Woodhouse on behalf of Vistaprint, you’ll learn key ways to get the most out of business signage.

Beyond Signs. First, it is worth remembering that there is more to signage than simply signs. In focusing on signs, it can be easy to overlook the smaller details that make up signage. Uniforms, company pens, and mailing labels are all an extension of signage and therefore an extension of the brand image. With this in mind, a conscious effort can be made to harmonize branding across every aspect of a business. Remembering the smaller details and keeping them consistent will project much greater credibility and authority. These details are also where signage as PR can really do some overtime as it goes way beyond your physical premises. If a letter can immediately be identified with the brand, it is less likely to find its way to the bottom of the pile.

Less is More. This old adage stands as true as ever. Don’t try and cram too much in as the important information can become buried underneath the excess. Any potential customer needs to be able to pick out immediately what the business offers them and, if necessary, how they can get hold of this (i.e. contact information!). A cleaner design will appear more professional. Graphics are helpful to make it memorable, but shouldn’t overshadow the real details.

ColorsColors are important to consider on two levels. Firstly, the sign needs to be easy to read so any text must stand out from the background. Of course, black on white or white on black are the classic examples. The text stands out sharply from the background and visibility is enhanced. Conversely, two shade of the same color may have potential customers struggling to decipher the information. However, the second point regarding colors is that they should be in line with the nature of the business and different colors have different connotations. Here the classic example is green to signify nature or eco-friendliness. Though it may seem obvious, it should not be underestimated as a powerful tool.

Audience Appropriate. Almost all businesses have target audiences and signage can be a great way to grab the attention of that audience. This means it must be tailored to the tastes and possible even the age bracket of this group. A feeling of inclusiveness goes a long way so make sure the color tones and the graphics cater to the right audience. The trick here is to be up-to-date without pandering to anything too faddish that won’t stand out from the current crowd and will quickly become out of date – and need replacing before too long!

Vistaprint provides printing and web design services for businesses.