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Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Pricing Yard Signs

So... you've been looking to buy yard signs but the pricing seems to be all over the place. What gives?!?

Real Estate sign pricing (business lawn & yard sign pricing) can be a daunting challenge. With all the different pricing on the internet, the truth is, you never know if you have gotten a good price on real estate or business signs unless you do hours and hours of research, keeping track of business sign companies who called you back, those who did not call, who sent you email from which business sign company... how much were the goes on and on.

Real Estate/Business Yard Sign pricing varies, sometimes wildly, from one sign company to the next..why? Pricing for business signs seems to vary from one sign company to the next because each business sign company offers a different type of product or service. It sometimes may be a matter of how a sign company prints the signs as to how they price them. Quality varies, along with pricing for different types of materials used to create the signage. Corrugated Plastic coroplast, for instance, comes in different sizes and thicknesses and is sometimes mistaken for a less sturdy type of plastic or paper when business agents are pricing signs. Corrugated Plastic is typically sold in a 4ml thickness. Coroplast is the most rigid of yard sign materials. Coroplast is an outdoor material and is made from corrugated plastic, which gives it strength and rigidity.

Fold over yard signs are typically made of paper with a gloss finish or a type of plastic coating, which means they are not as sturdy as corrugated plastic, and they usually cost less. All weather Cardboard Yard Signs are printed on an outdoor 24pt. cardboard that is plastic coated to protect it against the elements. The design is printed double-sided, folded along the top, and sealed smoothly along the sides with glue. The yard sign is formed like a pocket so it slides over wire stakes.

Poly bag yard signs are made from tough thick sun-blocking film known as high density polyethylene. These plastic yard signs use a weatherproof, no-show through material; the finished sign is a co-extruded multilayer polyethylene containing ethylene to make it stronger and extend the life of the sign.

When pricing yard signs remember to take into account the type of material you wish to use and the amount of signs you need because this will affect the pricing you receive. Many companies offer discounted pricing the more signs you purchase no matter which material you choose. And though pricing signs can seem daunting, just remember that the effort and time spent are well worth it. In the end you will have a great advertising tool for a relatively small investment.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The Future of Yard Signs...

Hello all! I read a blog today concerning the future of yard signs by James Kimmons and thought I would share the information. Click here to read his blog. James Kimmons is in the real estate business and, as we all know, real estate requires a very large presence because of the competitive nature of home selling. In his blog, James discusses what he calls "virtual footprints" and compares them to yard signs. I would like to point out that I think James has a very good point. What we see most these days is web presence... the more web presence, better the chances are you will be seen. It is very important to establish your company or service on the web as well as on the street, radio, TV or whichever media you choose. The fact of the matter is that (as stated in a previous blog) advertising is everywhere. The larger your circle, the more clients you will have... theoretically speaking. And while I agree with James' assertion that virtual footprints will become the yard sign of the future, I must also state that when it comes to advertising and making your name known, one should use everything they can... even if that is a humble yard sign standing on the side of the road.

James' post originated from an article by Mel Aclaro titled How is online changing traditional real estate marketing? Both blogs make for excellent reading.

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

How One Sign Company Stays at the Top...

On December 9th I included information pertaining to which is mainly an internet based sign business with occasional walk in customers. Recently they have added a sign editor to their site allowing new and existing customers to create and view their sign content before ever submitting an order. There have been many changes implemented over the past year as they believe in offering the best quality at the lowest price. In an effort to maintain quality standards for their customers, they have become one of the top sign companies on the internet.

Jon Holmquist, the owner, is proud of this accomplishment... and well he should be! For the most part, Jon relies on repeat business and word of mouth rightly believing that customer satisfaction speaks louder than anything else. No mass marketing strategies there! And though some would think this detrimental to continued success in an economy that seems to be sliding downhill, the company is rolling along as strong as ever. When asked how he has managed to keep his company among the top sign suppliers, Jon had this to say:

"Obviously we attract a certain customer... that's right - cheap. They want what they need at the lowest price they can get it for. They spend a lot of time comparing prices before buying. We've noticed a trend of even more customers asking for a better price, or new customers just "shopping around". This was validated by our online statistics which told us three things: more visitors, lower conversion rates and lower average orders. This all started in November 2007 and in an effort to adapt or respond, we decided to rethink our pricing. First, we hired an accounting firm (VCFO) to review our books (my wife was our bookkeeper and we weren't ready for a full time controller). After a lot of help we were finally able to see exactly what our costs were. We were surprised to find that we were losing money on small orders and possibly overcharging on large volume orders. So, we adjusted. We tweaked what needed tweaked, lowered prices, implemented cost saving strategies, and really listened to what our customers had to say. We were always aware of the feedback we received (and grateful for it) and we did our best to maintain positive feedback... but when we started to implement more ways to help the customers get what they wanted, exactly as they wanted it (like the design tool we now use), and at a price too good to beat, customer satisfaction went through the roof. The key to success lies in the customers hands. They can make you or they can break you... that is the plain and unvarnished truth in any industry. And when you are willing to listen... really listen... to what the customers are saying and adjust to their needs, the impact is astounding."

To this bloggers mind, that is probably the best advice any company can receive. Regardless of your marketing strategy, it is imperative to be receptive to the wants and needs of your customers... but always make sure you take the active role as well. Just being receptive won't keep you at the top; you have to be willing to go the extra mile and give the customers what they want.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Yard Signs: Street Spam?

Over the past few years yard signs have earned the reputation of "street spam". Yet, for just a moment, let us consider the following...

How many small businesses have received additional business (customers) by advertising with yard signs? How many new businesses have gained some recognition with the use of yard signs? And what about politics? Do these signs not affect the greater population during election time? Thus, can this really be considered "spam"? As a firm believer in marketing and marketing strategies that build customer base, I believe that yard signs have earned their place in the business world. Granted, if you come across a corner that has 10 - 20 signs cluttered together, this would most certainly be considered "spam". After all... too much of something can always be a bad thing. But used in moderation these signs have awesome potential at a low price.

Another thing to consider is this: No matter what station you watch on TV you will no doubt be bombarded with commercials. Commercials are also advertisement. You can get hit with up to 5 commercials in a 2 minute period of time. Shouldn't this be considered "spam" as well? Both are advertisement gimmicks designed to inform potential and existing customers of upcoming sales, new business, and as always... to sell sell sell their products or services! So... where is the difference here? One gets you in the comfort of your home, car or at the computer and the other gets you as you drive around. And let's not forget radio where you can listen to 2 - 3 minutes of advertisements every 5 - 10 minutes.

My point being that no matter where you go today, no matter what you are doing, you will be surrounded by advertisements for one thing or another. Why is it considered "spam" if it's on the side of the road but not when it's on TV or radio? Where is the differentiating line? Just something to think about...

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Legal Issues

Previously, I posted regarding yard signs and their effectiveness. I also spoke about the different laws in different states regarding the placement of yard signs. I would like to expand on that for just a moment...

Zoning codes and laws regulating sign placement are typically developed and enforced by cities and counties, not by the state government. Most cities have sign ordinances that restrict the size and placement of signs on public and private property. The specifics of the rules and regulations vary by municipality and region. The sign shop you use will probably not be able to advise you of the rules for you city. To avoid warnings and fines you should familiarize your self with the sign ordinances in your area. For example, here is a summary of State of Texas House Bill 212 (HB212) .

Additional revisions to this proposed ordinance were made in response to HB 212, which was enacted during the last legislative session, effective September 1, 2003. The final language in HB 212:
1. Does not explicitly address public safety/aesthetic regulation of political signs.
2. Explicitly states that a city may not prohibit signs from being placed, unless it exceeds the limits described in Section (d) of the same bill. Subsection (d) provides that the limitation on municipal regulation doesn't apply to a sign that:
A. Has an effective area grater than 36 feet
B. Is more than eight feet high
C. Is illuminated or has any moving elements

HB 212 also states that a municipal charter provision or ordinance (for a sign that contains a primarily political message) may not prohibit
the sign from being placed but is silent when it comes to regulating signs with regard to reasonable time, and setback restrictions by ordinance.

Current ordinance puts reasonable time limits on the placement of political election signs (up to 30 days after the election).

Unfortunately, the specific language of your city's sign ordinance may not be easy to find. Sometimes the law is available on-line, but often it is only available in written form from the police department or city offices. Anyone interested in erecting a sign should check with the City Zoning Office to see if a permit is needed to ensure that the sign meets City code. something else to keep in mind is that these ordinances have been in a constant state of change since they were implemented so it is important to check back regulary.

Click here for local ordinances from American Legal
Click here for local ordinances from

Here is a sample of sign ordinanence laws from around the U.S.

Information for this blog was provided (in exact content and verbage) from a site that not only keeps you up-to-date on sign information, but helps you find signs at super cheap prices. sponsors which happens to be one of the lowest priced sign companies you can find. I highly recommend both of these companies for anyone looking to price or buy signs.

Thanks for reading!
See who's stopping by!

Monday, December 8, 2008

The Power of Yard Signs

According to Tim Broder, "Yard signs are the most obvious, yet underutilized selling tool in the Realtor's arsenal." This is true not only for realtor's, but for anyone trying to sell, advertise, or market a product or service. Yard signs bring visibility and, despite some common concerns, yard signs can be attractive. Of course, cost comes into play the more artistic the sign but keep in mind that the sign (or signs) are selling YOU... your service... your product... your candidate. It's worth a little extra to make a lasting impression!

How many times can you remember driving through the neighborhood and seeing a bright yellow or white yard sale sign? Roofing sign? Get rich quick signs? And ohhh... let's not forget the ever present signs! The fact is signs are everywhere. But are they really being utilized to their full potential? Do they really work? Really? Well... let's see what others have to say:

Signs are considered to be the most effective tools in advertising history for any business. They always work as a dedicating factor for the success and profit of the business. You can let people know about your sale or about your corporation easily through a yard sign - Elizabeth Miranda, VP Franchising Public Relations.

Political yard signs are one of the most noticeable attributes of a political campaign in the United States. Lawn signs are considered a vital component of any local campaign. They are a cheap and effective method of making a candidate known in the election district. -

There are a ton of other testimonials at sites like

The absolute fact of the matter is these signs work. That's why you see them posted everywhere. But there are a few things to keep in mind when ordering signs:

Remember, color combinations with high contrast between the background and letters are easier to read and can be seen from greater viewing distances. These color combos are the most readable and successful color combinations in order of viewing efficiency.

A. Yellow on Black
B. White on Blue
C. Yellow on Blue
D. Green on White
E. Blue on Yellow
F. White on Green
G. White on Burgundy
H. Burgundy on Yellow
I. Burgundy on White
J. Yellow on Burgundy
K. Red on White
L. Yellow on Red
M. Red on Yellow
N. White on Red

Some states have laws regarding yard signs... others don't. Make sure that you are aware of which laws are in affect in your state before placing signs. Some states will simply have you remove the signs, others might have the signs removed and then fine you for placing the signs. Laws are different for each state... always double check.

Determine your needs before placing an order! Calling a sign shop or walking into a sign shop with no idea what you want to say does not help you at all. The staff there can be the best staff in the world but they can't see your vision or read your mind. Most sign shops have designers that can help you bring your vision to life... but they still need to know what you want to say to your potential customers.

Be clear and concise about what you want placed on your sign. There are many variations to choose from and most sign companies offer templates that can be customized to better meet your needs.

Do your homework! Yeah.... I know.... homework is blah... but it was always necessary and still is. We have the world at our fingertips these days with the internet. Read reviews and customer comments... check pricing with different companies to get the best price for your needs. Many sign companies run various weekly specials
that allow you to get more sign for your buck.

Remember, no matter what business you are in or what you're trying to sell or communicate, yard signs can help you reach a larger audience. Utilize the power of yard signs and watch your business grow!

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