In a recent USA TODAY article for small businesses, Rhonda Abrams makes a great point about utilizing new technologies and channels to get our messages out, but not to abandon or overlook the fundamentals. Any well-balanced branding or ‘external communications’ program should utilize all effective and efficient forms of message delivery to get the job done.
Here is an excerpt from her article:
“Social Media. Search engine ads. Mobile Marketing.
You can market your small business in a lot of sexy new ways, but hold on. Don’t overlook one of the most tried-and true ways to let people know about your business.
I’m talking about signs.
The concept is hardly ground breaking, but that’s why they’re easily forgotten. Signs are cheap and easy, but best of all they work.
1. As we discussed the need for an online document-storage system, a few of us suggested the same company. Why? We had seen a huge billboard on the freeway.
2. For each trade show where we exhibit, we print a special sign featuring our newest product and a special offer for attendees. The sign costs about $100 but dramatically increases the number of people who come to our booth.
3. My carpet cleaner parks his truck, his unmarked truck, in my driveway on a very busy street. For a few bucks, he could get a magnetic sign and let hundreds of potential customers see his name and phone number. No sign, no ad.
Signs come in all forms and sizes — a billboard in Times Square, an awning over your restaurant’s front door, the name of your construction company on the side of your truck, someone standing on a corner wildly waving a sign pointing to your furniture store.
They can be inside or outside your place of business — a banner printed at a copy shop announcing a blow-out sale or a hand-printed sign on a “staff favorites” shelf at a book store.
Signs get people’s attention.
Besides being pretty cheap, another advantage is that typically they’re persistent — unlike a TV or website ad that disappears in 30 seconds or a Facebook posting that gets pushed down within an hour.
Invest in them once, and they generally stay around a long time without social media’s ever-present need to update. Once you design the sign, you may not have to think about it for years.”
Whether you are running a business or even having a yard sale…it’s something to keep in mind.