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Don’t Make These 3 Sign Mistakes

Your sign represents a sizable investment in your company. You had to pay for a professional to design and install your sign, and now you hope to reap the rewards for the effort.
But if you don’t watch out for these common mistakes, your larger-than-life letters might hurt, rather than help, your business.

1. Turning Off Exterior Signage at Night
As a business owner, you likely want to save money wherever you can. When you turn off all your lights, you easily cut some of your utility bills. However, if you turn off your exterior signs, too, you also undermine their marketing value. Rather than saving money, you lose potential customers because drive-by traffic can’t see your business name in the dark. Even after you lock up for the night and turn off your interior lights, keep your outdoor signs lit for as long as possible. If you can’t afford to leave them on all night, at least leave them illuminated until midnight when traffic starts to slow.

2. Leaving “Open” Signs on After Hours
While good lighting and illumination help others see your business, you don’t want to give customers a false impression about your regular hours. When customers see an “open” sign flashing, they assume you or a friendly staff member will be available and ready to serve them, despite the late hours. During an emergency, they may choose your business first simply because of the misleading sign. They might even try to pull on your door for a few minutes, leading to your customers’ embarrassment and frustration.

To avoid this problem, set your “open” sign on a different timer than your business name or logo. Turn off the sign right before you leave for the day. If you can, post your typical hours on your door or window where passers-by can easily see them.

3. Not Repairing Broken, Faded or Burnt Out Lettering
Your signs should reflect your company. If you have an old, rusted sign with damaged lettering, customers may worry that you won’t care for them in the same way you don’t care for your property.
Additionally, broken lettering could lead to awkward changes in your sign’s meaning. For example, if you ran a donut shop and the letters D and O burnt out, people might assume you sold almonds, cashews and pistachios. Or if you┬áran a funeral home and the letters E through L failed to light, your clients might think you love mainstream musicals. Hire a professional to regularly maintain and repair your sign to ensure it stays in good shape. If necessary, replace old signage and update old lettering to reflect your company’s modern persona.

4. Failing to Correct Misspellings and Grammar Errors
Many people make a hobby out of looking for errors in flyers, posters and signs. Misplaced apostrophes (it/it’s), mixed up homophones (to/two/too) and common misspellings (“a lot,” which is two words, not one) will do more than generate a chuckle or two. They’ll make you and your business look unprofessional, and they can lead to misunderstandings and confusion about your general message. Before you ever approve a print for a new sign, check and double-check for any grammar and spelling errors. If you worry that you won’t find all the mistakes, hire an editor to inspect your new sign for you.

Need Help Avoiding Mistakes?
These mistakes can inhibit your sign’s visibility and detract from potential sales. If you want to avoid making more mistakes with your sign, talk to us about the design and implementation of your advertising. Our team will gladly give you advice on ways to make the most out of your sign.