- Arts and Design
Billboard, Ad, Sign or Advertisement for the Survival of a Business or Yardsale
Signs and Ads, What to do and NOT to do
On the road, there are millions of billboards, some with just plain words, some with colored lights and some that make no sense what so ever. The ads that people see each day, whether in the newspaper, on the side oF the road or on TV, someone would hopefully have put some thought into the design and layout of the ads. Some do not, for sure.
The simplest form is the most effective, thus the industry has created a name for this, called "KISS", which means "KEEP IT SIMPLE, STUPID". When a person is having a yard sale, putting an ad in the paper, creating a billboard and is trying to attract lots of customers, the advertising is very important, as well as other important things, such as location. So when a sign is made, let’s consider some of the most important ideas and thoughts about the signage. Using the KISS principle, most people going 55 miles an hour down the road are not going to be able to read more than three lines. This is as long as the sign is big enough to read and the lettering is large enough. To get the people to read the sign, there must be something that draws their attention to the sign, such as balloons, shiny items, or brilliant electrifying colors of the back board. So the first point to be addressed is the readability of the sign or will the people be able to see the sign?
The second point is whether the sign tells about the service, item and location. Does the ad get the information across to the receiver, the potential customer? Is the service, merchandise or yard sale clearly stated of what it is? One of the most important parts of the ad campaign is to let the potential customer or client know where the service or merchandise is located. An ad just cannot say, “YARD SALE, LOTS OF MERCHANDISE” but has to specific and detailed. As with any sign or ad, getting people from where they are to where you want them to be is a major challenge. The address, close landmarks and even arrows are sure to help.
Keeping it simple cannot be stressed enough. People do not want to try to look and try to decipher what the sign says or strain the eyes to two almost same colors, such as brown letters on a dark background. People respond to colors and there are certain colors that are used for certain responses. There is a whole science in this category called, Color Psychology, where each color represents a response of the person. Certain colors blend together, while others are attention grabbers. People usually do not respond well to the signs that use no color or drab colors, but the signs that contrast the colors are well received.
Another very important point is the verbiage, wording and slang. Again, apply the KISS principle. The verbs, words and explanations should be understandable to the general population. The spelling also is important. There was a gigantic billboard on a major highway that stated, “FRESH MAID HAMBURGER”. Sometimes this is done for a “play on words”, but in this case, the spelling was not caught. There was also an ad in the paper that had a truck picture and under the picture, it stated, “AND ALL OF THIS; AND IT’S FREE”. This ad should have indicated that this was a mission, with a thrift store, willing to pick up donated merchandise. There was a consignment store that was started in which the owner named the store an off the wall name with a large sign showing this. Two wrongs here, in which customers in the area had never had a consignment store, so they did not know what one was and the people could not relate to the name of the store.
The following sign that was hanging above a jewelry shop has been up for sometime, although it has two mistakes in spelling. This word is supposed to be spelled, "jewelry", not "jewellery". It is very wise to communicate to the sign maker by voice, by writing it down and then follow up before and after it is hung to make sure it is done correctly. Have some other people look at the sign, the verbage and the colors before and after.
The following signs have the eye attention apeal. These signs also have the What, When, Where and How Much. These signs also blend the colors or contrast the colors to demand attention.
So when you advertise for a yard sale, a bill board, a store sign or newspaper ad, remember that there are some important steps to take.
1) KISS; Keep it Simple, Stupid
2) Make it large enough to read and understand
3) Don’t overdo the amount of lettering and lines
4) Make the colors appealling to attract the readers
5) Location, location, location; make sure the directions are available
6) Know your area, people and customers
7) Put the signage where it can be seen and at a distance
8) Make sure the information is clear, concise and accurate
9) Have someone check the spelling, verbiage and language
10) Have arrows, markers, telephone numbers and complete information
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Being interested in advertising and using it as a big inspiration source I'm always on the look out for really cool ads. Today we can experience advertising in all sorts of ways; radio, television, web, etc. However, with all this new media around pe