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Blueprint to Branding: The Sign Design Process Decoded

While many people think of print marketing as a thing of the past, this couldn't be further from the truth. Recent research shows that 82% of all consumers trust print ads more than digital ones when making purchasing decisions.

Sign design is one of the most important ways that businesses can showcase their goods and services on a physical medium. Read on to learn the ins and outs of the sign design process and how you can incorporate signs and billboards into your branding strategy.

 1. Set Goals

The first thing to do when designing a sign is to consider your goals. Who are you trying to reach with your design? What do you hope to accomplish?

Research the target audience of your business. Track purchasing metrics and the demographics (age, location, income, and occupation) of those who follow you on social media. These are the people you want to entice with your sign design, so look into what sorts of colors, information, designs, and concepts they like.

Decide what you want your design to do after identifying your target audience. If you simply want to drive awareness and foot traffic, a brightly-colored photo of top-performing products may be the perfect thing to entice buyers. If you want immediate conversions, try putting a QR code on the sign that people can scan for a promo code.

Regardless of your specific goals, branding needs to be a core objective of any marketing campaign. Put your business name and logo design in a prominent place on the graphic.

The best road to a successful sign marketing campaign is to incorporate it into your digital marketing strategy, too. They should work in tandem by combining traditional and cutting-edge advertising methods.

2. Conceptualize Your Sign Design 

At this point, you should have a solid grasp of the key deliverables of your marketing campaign. It's time to start doing research on what types of signs have helped other businesses reach similar goals.

Begin by looking at the signs and billboards that your direct competitors have created. These are the companies that you want to outperform, so you need to make sure that your designs are better than theirs. See what they did right so you know what to emulate.

See what could be improved on so that you can make your signs more eye-grabbing than even their best designs. Enlist multiple people to look at them so you can get more opinions on what works vs what doesn't.

Then, go online and begin to look at other signs made for companies in your industry. Pinterest is a good place to start this research because you can save all the images to one easily accessible board.

After gathering 10-20 images, look for trends in the designs. Common threads are likely things that work well and grab attention, so they're what you want to imitate.

3. Incorporate Modern Signage Trends

Once you know what looks great in a graphic design, it's time to begin the actual sign design process. To make the most of your efforts, enlist a sign design professional to help you. Experts know what's currently trending and how certain design elements can maximize your ROI, so talking about your ideas with them can start you out on the right track.

The first thing to know is that a good sign follows the SMART rule. This means that it needs to be simple, memorable, ageless, reliable, and thoughtful. Making it easy to understand, timeless, and scalable can help people connect with your brand through an interesting and distinctive design.

But what trends should you know about in 2024?

Some of the most popular current design elements include:

  • Minimalist designs with simple images and bold lettering
  • Simple colors and infographic-style images
  • Vibrant hues across the entire sign surface
  • Contrasting shapes and colors that keep people engaged
  • Bold typography that keeps people engaged as they read
  • 3D signs with depth and dimension
  • Interesting accents like foil and metal that add some texture
  • Signage made from sustainable materials

 4. Choose the Right Sign Type

At this point, you'll have a good idea of what you want your sign to look like. This means that you can choose the right type of sign to best display it.

Signage attempts to resolve several different pain points. Because of this, there are tons of different sign types that aim to solve various problems.

For example, if you're looking for something custom to showcase on a billboard or wall, simple custom signage or banners might be a good choice.

Awning signs are great for driving foot traffic into a brick-and-mortar building while cabinet signs can get people to look at certain offerings inside the retail space. Vinyl graphics are great for brightly-colored designs that look nice in windows while neon signs are great for those who want to catch people's eyes with lights and bright colors.

Determine where you want to display your sign and go from there. Then talk with an expert about what materials will best showcase the colors, textures, and intricacies of your sign.

 5. Incorporate Your Sign Into a Branding Strategy

 Signs and banners are great ways to get people interested in your business and services. However, experts say that using print and digital marketing in tandem can boost conversions by 28%. It can also make response rates 450% higher than they otherwise would be.

Incorporate your branded signs into an overall strategy. Put your website URL and social media handles on the sign. Post bold and minimalistic lettering about the promotions that people can get when they shop on your website.

QR codes are another great way to boost your branding strategy. Put a QR code on your sign for people to scan and deliver a discount to them when they do.

 Beyond Basic Graphic Design Tips

Now that you know the step-by-step process needed for effective business sign design, it's time to begin implementing your branding strategy. Our team is committed to helping you design and print signs, banners, and other graphics that help your business stand out against the competition.

We work with companies in a wide range of industries and offer many different printing methods for diverse promotional materials. Request a quote from Huston Signs to begin promoting your Indiana business the right way.

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