Thursday, October 30, 2014

Last Minute Halloween Ideas Using Your Affordable LED Products

Still having those nightmares of getting crazy over what ideas to throw for your company’s Halloween party? If you’re on the brink of using in the ol’ white linen over the walls with superimposing cutouts that spelled “Happy Halloween!”, then time to wake up and smell the year 2014 because that “creepy” Halloween décor is so ancient, even mummies don’t want it for their own party. Don’t fret and thank goodness for LED technology, your décor problem is solved!

Last minute Halloween ideas? Why not make the most out of your LED products?
Photo courtesy: SpiderDan via Facebook
If you think your LED signs and digital marquees only serve as your store’s public invitation to the public for visiting your shop, these twinkling, bright and eye-catching features can also be used to “spookify” your store. You don’t believe us? Here are some ideas:

1. LED Message Board as Headstones

This is one those many things you can do with your LED writing board. Wipe off those menu list inscribed on the board for a while and make it as a makeshift headstone, put it in one corner and add little details like a dilapidated cross made of discarded styro or wood and dry leaves. Put creepy names from famous horror movies like Jack Torrance, Samara Morgan, Damien Thorn, Annie Wilkes or Norman Bates to complete the prop.

2. Scrolling Indoor Sign for Your Sporadic Creepy Message

Just imagine a scene from a zombie apocalypse or alien invasion, wherein everything’s a messy, bloody environment. Decorate shop and/or office space as if the place has been infested by gnarly gut-eating “walkers”. Get a cheap strobe lights, scatter some old newspaper, spill a little fake blood and you’re all set. As for your scrolling indoor sign (and even those programmable and outdoor signages), put a cryptic message (e.g. “They’re coming” or “They’re watching us”) and tilt it or hang it somewhere within the space in a “haphazardly-looking” manner.

3. Rechargeable LED Candles to Light Up the Place, Horror Style

Use your imagination. You can make your store look like a trashed up castle from the movie, Dracula, go as that creepy character holding a candle from Insidious or use is as a simple accompaniment to your carved pumpkin, up to you on how to use your LED candles. In addition, you can also use this as a walkway guide in case you decide not to use regular lights for your Halloween shindig.

4. LED Rope Lights for Added Details

With these long strands of LED string lights, you can use this to details to your place. Using this, you can spell out the word, “BOO!” instead of using the traditional Halloween greetings on cardboard. Heck, if you have a mannequin, you can use this as an added element to your freaky motif by simply dressing it up using the LED strings.

5. LED String Lights for Makeshift Ghost

You can still catch up on the Halloween fever by decorating your office/shop using your LED products. 

Still want to use that white linen of yours? If you insist! And here’s an idea: Attach nylon strings on it, then hang the thing on a corner, or perhaps on the center to form a ghost-like shape. You can put creepy-wacky designs and details such as eyes or mouth. After which, install the LED string lights underneath the linen to highlight the décor.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Digital Signage and Where’s the Perfect Spot to Install It

For newly-opened businesses and established hole-in-the-walls as well, storefront signs, marquees and other digital signage are there not only to draw attention from the crowd, enticing them to come over and visit your shop, but also to usher them as they enter your store. Not to mention, some signages are part of some legal requirements imposed by the city government such as fire exit signs and the likes. However, what’s the point in having the most sophisticated, high-tech digital marquees and LED signboards if they’re installed behind a bundle of tree branches, by the back of the door or in some sketchy alleys, hiding in plain sight?

A strategic spot for a signage is vital in showcasing your business to the public, much to the extent of observing laws regarding safety practices within the vicinity. And overlooking this aspect by putting your sign in a secluded, close to nonexistent area simply defeats the purpose of your signage as “marketing collateral”. And unlike those large billboards soaring high above skyscrapers and rooftops, retail signages are relatively smaller, and thus should be placed in a key spot that’s visible enough for the general public to notice it.

And where exactly are these spots?

Store’s Main Sign

The Right Spot: By The Window/Facade

Nothing beats the old-fashioned way of using the window to cradle the name of your business. And that’s why you can never go wrong in installing your bright LED signage by the façade or window. Putting your digital marquee suspended just right above the door and/or by the glass pane is strategic and convenient enough for patrons and potential customers to see the name of the establishment. That way, you’re now instilling your brand to them and the nature of your business in a well-thought, yet effortless manner. And even for some, they include business hours inform the public their time of operation.

Open Sign

The Right Spot: Door

Think of it as your inanimate usher, telling everyone that your shop is now open for business. Aside from the joint’s name, open signs should be the second thing any/every customer has to see when passing by your store to say the least. Open signs are the ones that welcome patrons and encourage other potential guests to take a look-see inside an establishment. Customers are more compelled to enter a shop upon seeing an open sign, rather than not seeing any signage at all, so it’s best this sign should be clearly seen at least somewhere near your door or reception area.

Fire Exit Sign

The Right Spot: Somewhere Near the Fire Exit Door

According to Occupational Safety and Health Administration requires any establishment at least 2 egresses or exit routes (1 for some, depending on the approval of OSHA) in case of emergencies such as fire, earthquake, accidents and the likes. And part of the requirement is to have a readable, well-lit and visible signage along exit access and routes to direct evacuees where to go. So, make sure to install at least one programmable LED signage by the emergency exit to prompt customers where to proceed when disaster strikes.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Obvious Signs You Need to Acquire a New Storefront Signage

Storefront signs are there initially to invite customers to your shop. But what if it doesn’t seem to cut it anymore and goes the other way around, up to the point when it’s slowly becoming a pain-in-the-butt liability instead of an eye-candy asset to your business?

Feel like replacing your store sign there, Rob?
Perhaps, this could be one of the signs that you need to immediately get and install a new digital signage.

What are those signs, you may ask? Here are some of them:

1. Nobody is visiting your store anymore – Don’t fret too much. Maybe the reason why people don’t go to your place anymore is that they can’t remember the name of your shop. Sure, people may have experienced something worth coming back to your store, leaving you with a promise of another visit. However, they have the tendency to forget simple things like a restaurant name or even the street your restaurant is located. So, take this as a sign to get a new storefront marquee to constantly remind customers the good experience they’ve had in your store, as well as to get noticed by other potential patrons. Also, you may want to consider giving them flyers or business cards.

2. Your marquee has served its time – Just like a loyal, ailing employee, store signs need to retire as well. If it is pretty much evident that your dilapidating, close-to-being-disintegrated store sign needs to be taken down, then this is the right time to honor and celebrate the years of service this old marquee of yours have rendered. And while you’re at it, go check out some of the best digital LED sign store online to order a brand new replacement.

3. Electricity consumption gets higher – This goes for electricity-powered neon store signs. Although, expenses for utilities is very well taken and understood, don’t you think it would be better, perhaps more efficient to use LED-powered lighting scheme –part of which is your indoor and outdoor store sign? The use of this particular technology greatly cuts down electricity consumption by a significant amount, making this ideal for business use and a perfect way to cut corners.

4. Too bland, boring and blahh – Being safe is one thing, but being too safe is boring, especially for ventures like restaurants, coffee shops, pizza parlors and other product and service-rendering businesses. And being boring often leads to biz collapse. If you think your signage does not live up to the vibe that your current endeavor wants to exude, consider revamping your business marquee. But don’t over-do it, as extreme “flashiness” could also oversell you.

5. Grammatical errors everywhere – Unless your store is insisting to have a funny and “punny” statement at the same time, then perhaps practicing your creative license over your business name wouldn’t be much of a problem. Heck, even those “deliberately misspelled” signages experience occasional backfires because of this common signage mistake. On the other hand, complete disregard for diligent proofreading has no place for a store sign. So, the moment you see something really disturbing about your store marquee that will unleash the living Adolf out of those Grammar Nazis, take down the signage right away and replace them pronto. And just to be on the safe side, stick to the original spelling and grammar.

We all know how important it is for a business to have a decent and functional storefront signs, right? Much with the bonus of having an eye-catching digital marquee, this bright piece of device the general public sees from store windows is what directs patrons and neophytes alike to come by and visit your establishment. Without this pivotal element, you’re losing a huge chunk of your chances of getting customers.

And in the same manner, having a dysfunctional signage doesn’t cause any good as well, as it practically defeats its purpose of encouraging potential guests to step inside your place. Either of which, a beat-up storefront sign is as bad as not having at all.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

LIGHT-HACKS: Other Uses of Writable LED Board


It’s pretty obvious how digital marquees and LED signs have come a long way in helping business owners attract and invite potential customers in an eye-catching and cost-efficient manner. What’s even more fascinating is how Writable LED Boards leaped further in providing ways to captivate patrons and customers in a color-blasting manner, and much more to the amusement of rookie shop owners and seasoned business operators.
Photo courtesy: quickmeme.com

Today, the use of these bright LED boards is no longer limited to being just your ordinary well-lit signage in restaurants, bars and various shops as your makeshift menu and announcement board. This luminous piece of marketing peripheral is an all-around board that can be employed for other functions. And here are some of them.

Use it as a scoreboard for darts, pool and other bar/indoor sports

Keeping score has never been this brilliant. Literally! Throw away your old scoreboard for darts, billiards and other indoor sports, and use this board instead so that players can clearly see the scores better. And in a chalk-free style! This is definitely ideal for sports bar, pubs and saloons.

Let the “Board” Games Begin

We’re talking about bar games, so why not make the most out of it, right? This erasable and reusable LED board can serve as a perfect drawing panel when playing team games such as Pictionary, Mad Libs, Taboo, Boggle, Text Twist and even Spelling Bee to name a few during your drinking spree with friends and colleagues. Talk about “Board” games, huh?

Attention!!! Notice and Announcement Board

Because bulletin boards were so last decade ago! Making use of your writable LED board sign as your announcement board will make whiteboards look like a spot of clutter on your wall. You can never go wrong with a polite and clever thought rendered onto a colorful LED board as your medium. Definitely “CANNOT BE UNSEEN!”

To-Do List: Make a To-Do List

Because having a business means you need to work on a lot of things. And being the forgetful you, you have to organize your schedule and plot a to-do list. And this works not just for you. You can also advise or remind your workers to do necessary tasks like weekly maintenance, grocery chores and the likes.

Your Virtual Motivational Speaker

Photo courtesy: buymelaughs.com
Need to pep talk your people? Must come up with a way to boost their morale? Problem is motivational speaking is not your strong point. So what you need to do is to “borrow” and share some inspirational quotes, funny & punny lines or song lyrics and scribble it onto your LED board. Make this a weekly thing to somehow motivate them or make them smile to say the least the moment they read it. Just to be on the safe side, don’t post Nietzsche or any nihilistic quotes… Trust us on this one.

Employee of the Month Spot

And finally, what better way to recognize your staff’s effort and superb work ethics than to post a photo and declare him/her your employee of the month with all the lights and its glory. This way, it’s easier and more fun to give a nod to your ace worker, as his fellow co-workers can also post messages on the board.

Want to see of our writable LED board products? Take a quick sneak peek by visiting Affordable LED! We’ll “beam” you up!

Friday, October 3, 2014

When The Sign Says “Welcome”, Do You Really Welcome Your Customer?


They all get it! Your shop is open for business, it says all over the digital marquee hanging outside your foyer. But as what states on your fancy signage, do you really live up to every letter of the word “welcome” in terms of interacting with your customer?

In a typical establishment – particularly restaurants and shops – welcoming your customers does not simply stop at the door step, where your welcome sign is usually installed. If you want a good pat on the back approval from your customers, give them enough reason to come back, or even stay for a while just to get something worth availing from your store to say the least.

Bad service leads to bad recommendations, and bad recommendations equates to bad reputation. Of course, you wouldn’t want the general public to think of your shop as a breeding ground for rude, snooty, pretentious, good-for-nothing staff just because they simply failed to put up a smile as they serve a bowl of lukewarm soup.

To change the pace, and to gain more patrons for your business, always remember to W-E-L-C-O-M-E customers! How? Here are some suggestions:

Warm greetings is a-must


 
Pretty much basic! Once the door opens for the customers, give them the nicest, warmest greetings to acknowledge their arrival. Don’t forget to put a smile. As they say, “a smile is a curve that sets everything straight”.

Escort your customers upon entering


Photo courtesy: Hooters.ca
The next thing to do after giving the salutatory is to usher your guest. If they have coats, assist them in taking it off. This is a common procedure especially in restaurants, hotels, spas and other service establishments. After which, introduce yourself if you will be in charge of attending their needs. You may either ask them firsthand what they came in for or state or perhaps offer them something, like maybe drinks or any complimentary entertainment.

Let your customers feel comfortable and homey


Photo courtesy: uproxx.com
Think of it this way: Customers are your temporary bosses. So you must attend to their needs as quick as possible, and of course, with finesse. Always be proactive by asking them if they need something else and be of any assistance. But do this in a casual, yet polite way. In assisting your guests, compel them to call you by your first name. Customers like service crew and staff who can address their needs in a more spontaneous, outgoing and “open” approach. By doing this, you are already getting their trust.

Compliment your guests in a soft, sincere tone

Photo courtesy: imgflip.com

For some, it’s just sweet-talks, but as Mother Teresa once said, “Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless.” Compliments are your selling power, as it uplifts customer’s mood and makes feel their special and important. Use it through simple nod on their choice of meal with a quick follow up phrase of agreement.

Offer a simple apology in the event of any inconvenience

Screengrab from the movie, Ratatouille
If by any chance that your customer has experienced any form of inconvenience and delay in service, rule of thumb is to apologize and assure them that such instances won’t happen again. If they told you something critical or displayed any form of annoyance, the last thing you need is to reciprocate with a negative gesture. Take note that being rude is your one way ticket to your business meltdown. Instead, consider this as a constructive criticism. A room for improvement, if you may.

Make short conversations with them


Photo courtesy: imgflip.com
This is one way of building rapport with your customers. Make sure to get their names, and know them by heart. Engage them to a good small talk like asking them about their experience in your shop so far, or perhaps relate something that will capture their interests. From there, you’re now starting to establish a good foundation with your guests. However, know your limits when conversing with them. Never ask any personal questions… Ever!

Escort your customers as well upon exit and say “thank you”


Photo courtesy: quickmeme.com
Once they’re ready to leave the shop, it is strongly recommended to escort them on their way out and extend your appreciation for visiting your place. Although, it is not strictly obliged to give something to the customer, a little token of gratitude wouldn’t hurt.

So you see, don’t just let the catchy digital welcome signs do the talking for you. Being the owner, it is up to you on how to manage customers and making their visit worthwhile.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Should You Use Witty Names and Pun Words For Your Signage?

Funny store can either be effective, or can make your store look unprofessional, so perhaps, the safest answer to this question would be an ambivalent YES and NO.

YES because funny signs can encourage customers to visit your place. It provides a homey, laid-back and casual vibe that makes them feel comfortable and welcomed. This has been proven to be effective, that even big shot brands occasionally adapt this strategy to attract more customers.

Photo courtesy: themetapicture.com

On the other hand, NO because of course, you would want your customers to take your business seriously, right? Hence, this does not suggest that every establishment owner should get back to the drawing board just to come up with a classy joke that they can incorporate with their business. That’s why don’t take this post’s every word for it.

It’s A Sign!


There are quite a number of stores around the world that deemed successful not only because of the goods and services that they are offering. Their store signs are one of the major factors that led their business towards fame and popularity (some of them, locally to say the least). Most of these businesses are in the food & beverage industry, furniture manufacturing, grooming and even marketing firms.

With these quirky, unusual names and signages that use word play to impose a unique identity, are they risking the reputation of their business? Isn’t it self-deprecation? Maybe, or maybe not.

As for the owner of one particular furniture and antique shop in Michigan, the strategy seems to work well. In fact, according to their website, “[Despite the name] at Wooden-It-Be-Nice, we take our work very seriously. If you are looking for steady craftsmanship and detailed attention, stop by our store room.”

Wooden It Be Nice antique shop in Belvidere, IL.
Photo courtesy: Wooden It Be Nice Facebook fan page

Got the Guts to Go for the Gag?


Another example of this is in Manila, Philippines, where the “unapologetically incorrect”, experimental Japanese-inspired joint, Wrong Ramen, made a bold move of trying a “reverse psychology” kind of approach in marketing their brand. True to its name, the restaurant offers its “different kind” of ramen in a self-deprecating way by deliberately lambaste itself in almost any way imaginable, telling everyone their ramen sucks, and even promotes other competitors. As a result, more people were instead intrigued, tried and actually loved the food they’re serving. In an interview, Dwight Co, managing director and founder of the ramen joint told about the initial plan was “scary, uncomfortable, and most people we told about our plan thought it was a bad idea. But we felt that’s precisely why it had so much potential. Nobody else would dare do it”
Photo courtesy: pepper.ph

Not My Kind of Thing


But unlike the said establishments mentioned earlier, hospitals, clinics, law firms, hotels, fine dining restaurants and schools are a different story. These institutions rarely, if not never use this strategy because primarily, these businesses have a strict code of conduct, and making jokes out of a scrolling LED board is the last thing in their mind. Therefore, it is not apropos to use such signage. Otherwise, these businesses may compromise their credibility (unless if they are trying to pull a “Saul Goodman”). Although there are still some straight-edge offices that unintentionally carry some of the weirdest “cannot be unseen” names displayed outside their offices, but refused to re-brand their business and at the same time, managed to maintain its strict, formal and straightforward integrity despite the laughable title. Call it coincidence, call it intentional, as long as it works for them, then it’s all good.
Wigger Law Firm in North Charleston, South Carolina
Photo courtesy worldwideinterweb.com

Are You Willing to Take the Risk?


As a business owner, deciding on whether or not to come up with a playful signage will still be up on you. As said earlier, you must have to gauge it according to the type and nature of your business. If you think a funny attention-grabber signage will get the customers to like your place, then there’s no reason why you shouldn’t do it. However, be mindful, as this name will forever be associated with you and your business.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Avoid Tacky Signage for Your Business

If you look the word “tacky” in the dictionary, you’ll get “characterized by lack of good breeding… In short, having a bad taste. As a budding businessperson, you wouldn’t want your business to be associated with that awful word, agree? Now, imagine if you own a classy restaurant that serves good food, fine wine and cozy ambiance. Now mix that with a bad signage, what do you think customers will say about you and your swanky fine dining hub?
WHAT’S WITH THE SIGN? A good straightforward business signage will effectively help in building your professional business credibility.

WHAT’S WITH THE SIGN? A good straightforward business signage will effectively help in building your professional business credibility.

You see, it’s difficult to build up a reputation, particularly when it comes to handling business. But it’s easy enough to destroy it, that even a small signage issue could ruin everything because of its bad taste. No one is to blame but you. So before checking and replacing your business sign, here are some tips you might want to consider these tips on avoiding tacky practices and strategies for your business signage.

Use the Perfect Font That Best Suits Your Business

Fonts like Comic Sans and Bradley Hand will never make it to the golden gates of being classy, so don’t even think about using it. Meanwhile, common fonts such as Helvetica, Trajan and Impact are way too overused, not to mention close to being tacky and amateurish, especially if not utilized right. Instead, come up with a font that will complement your business. You own a computer shop? Use a minimalist yet formidable font to accompany your logo; You’re in the fastfood business? Use a large, inviting font with little shadow/overlay effect to emphasize a homey, wholesome and welcome-y vibe. The keypoint here is to make your signage correlate with the nature of your business.

Use a Well-Lit Signboard Accordingly


Let’s make this a concrete example, since we’re talking about “lighting”. Say, you own a lights and fixtures shop. But then, you can’t even afford to change the lights of your signage. This will impose a bad reflection to your business because for one thing, you don’t even have the decency to replace the lights of your own sign. This is in utter bad taste, right? In installing your sign, make sure it is well-lit and visible enough for the public to see. It is better if you use LED sign because it is more efficiency in terms of dynamics and energy consumption.

Avoid “Punny” Business Names

Unless you intend to your business to be funny (which is apropos for comic book stores, barbershops and the likes), then carry on. But don’t get this the wrong way, punny business names and signages are funny, at times effective. But if you want your patrons and potential customers to take your biz seriously and look up to you as a “professional” businessperson, then you may want to consider use another business name. Make it simple, straightforward and of course, original.

Never Use Cardboard or Paper as Substitute/Makeshift Signage

Writable LED board is as good as having a traditional chalk board as a substitute in the event your main business signage conks out

The fastest way to throw away your business’ classy credibility is to use a makeshift signage using cardboard. Instead, you may use LED board and install it by the window for a short time while your signage is being repaired or replaced. In addition, you may also employ a chalkboard signage (this works especially for coffee shops and diners).

Having a bad signage is quite a major turn-off. Don’t commit this mistake, otherwise your business “creds” will hike down a couple of notch or so. And chances are, even your “regulars” will turn their backs on you because of a simple tackiness. So much for being in such bad taste, it’s time to take down your current signage and install a new one.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

A Few More Things You Need To Introduce Your Newly-Opened Restaurant Business

You’ve secured all the permits and licenses; negotiations with your suppliers are all done; A set of menu is well-thought; manpower is ready; your shop is situated right in the heart of the city; Looks like everything is all set for your restaurant grand opening… Except for a few things: An effective way to introduce your restaurant to the public!

Halt! Before thinking about cutting off the ribbon to officially inaugurate your food joint, here are a few more must-haves you need to consider in owning a restaurant:

A Catchy Name and a Logo



Giving a restaurant name is easy. But deciding a “great” restaurant name is crucial. “Why?” you may ask. Because that particular name will forever be associated with your restaurant and the type of food that you’ll be serving. Your restaurant’s name will be the identifier that will eventually be imprinted on your customers’ memory, along with their dining experience from your joint. Go for a simple yet catchy name. Be creative but don’t be tacky. You may also consider using wordplays and inside jokes but not to the extent that it will alienate customers.

Signages to Welcome Your Customers


Of course, signage is a must-have to every restaurant, as it serves as virtual usher for potential customers that pretty much says: “We’re open for business!” These signages, particularly open signs, downright inform and encourage customers to enter the shop as they’re very much welcome to come in and dine. Business hours sign is also a good way to tell the public your resto’s serving hours. Nowadays, the use of dynamic LED signages in most food & beverage industries is highly-recommended, as it draws more attention than that of a regular open signs.

A Dazzling Menu to Showcase your Latest Offerings


A good menu for the day is what will drive customers to visit your shop even more. Apart from the traditional menu that your waiters are proactively handing over to customers, it is always a good thing to post your specials and all-time favorites to a menu board. Not only customer will be enticed to order the mouth-watering dish that you’ll be serving for the day, having a menu board exudes a colorful vibe to your restaurant, bringing a warm, vibrant accent to your restaurant that makes your place more appealing.

Advertisements and Promos to Boost Sales and Customer Turnover


Using special promotions and advertising will greatly benefit your restaurant in attracting more customers to dine in your place. This is one way of telling the whole town that your restaurant is up and ready for service. Along with various traditional advertising schemes such as flyers, t-shirts and posters, you can also come up with different promotional antics like free dinner, gift cards, vouchers, discounts, combo meals, holiday specials and even tie-ups with other establishments to promote your food hub. Furthermore, go virtual by creating fan pages on various social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter to market your restaurant.

Along with these must-haves, it wouldn’t hurt to test the waters by going on a soft opening firsthand to gather some feedbacks as to how good your food business is doing. With this, you can make adjustments and further improvement in terms of service, theme and life hacks on running a resto business.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Make Your Business Signage Noticeable

Imagine if your hole-in-the-wall coffee shop is sandwiched right between two other establishments that has nothing to do with coffee. Not that they try to block off potential customers from coming to your joint. Despite your business is situated in a perfect location to reach your target market, it just seems that your shop is somehow unnoticeable to the public...Virtually invisible, if you may. What could possibly be a problem?

Perhaps, what you need is a signage revamp.


As posted last week on this blog, business storefront signage is a huge factor in promoting and introducing your business. It basically becomes your business’ identity for your customers to recognize your brand. That’s why in case you are currently experiencing the sited example above, it is clearly a “sign” that you need to do something to make passersby notice your business signage. Here are some ideas:


1. Be Bold Enough – Use bold letters to emphasize your signage. Along with the right color palate, make sure the backdrop contrasts to the letters to superimpose your business name.

2. Size Matters – Assuming that you have a decent design for your business signage but it looks as though people still aren’t noticing your business. Maybe the size of your signage is too small for the people to see. Go for a larger scale instead.

3. See it From Such Great Heights – The higher your signage, the more people will see it. Hence, more potential customers will be compelled to visit your place. But see to it that the size of the font is proportioned to the height to ensure visibility even from afar.

4. Be More Graphic – Graphics in business signage can make a big difference in terms of pursuing customers to check out your business. You can add moving elements or strategic lighting to exude a warmer vibe and welcoming aura to your store. However, do not over-do it as it will only make your signage look cluttered.

5. LED-ify Your Signage
Dynamic LED signage such as programmable LED signs, LED boards and scrolling signs can draw the public’s attention to your shop. LED signages not only can add color to your store, you can also infuse a little creativity by putting “punny” quotes, what’s today’s specials and even little doodles.

6. Position Your Signage Strategically – Of course, none of your effort would ever work if your business signage is located in a low-key spot. Make sure to place and position your signage somewhere visible to the public.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Is Your Business Logo Due for a Redesign?

Logos are very important in promoting and introducing your business. In its most basic form, these icons, drawings, or symbols – no matter how complicated or simple the design is – will serve as the “face” of your brand, and eventually becomes its unique, stand-alone identity; An identity that will point the people to you and your company the moment they saw it.

Photo Courtesy: No duck face via 9gag
Ergo, business owners needs to take time and analyze every detail if the logo complements, not only the products or services that they’re rendering, but also the nature of the business, as well as the people that they cater to. This is why business owners tend to change or redesign the logo, as the aesthetics are already becoming passé and doesn’t serve its purpose anymore; or much to the extent of no longer appealing to the target customers regardless of consistently flashing the brand to the most dynamic LED signage in New York.

Mind you, redesigning is a make-or-break thing, so it is better to study your logo and your brand first before making any drastic changes. To help you with this check out these points to determine if you are in dire need of a logo redesign.

It is Outdated


It is a given that logos should be timeless. But even the most classic logo design needs a little tweaking. Don’t take this blog post the wrong way, as you don’t need to make an unnecessary redesign of your logo every once in a while. The bottom line here is if the design is timeless, you should still consider to make room for improvement to your logo for updates just to get by with the ever-changing times, culture and norms. Concrete examples of these are brands like Coke, Starbucks, Bacardi, MGM and even superhero logos like Superman and Batman to name a few.

You Had a Business-Related Acquisitions, Merge, Name Disputes, etc.


Whether your business has exponentially grown, lost market shares, or has a name dispute with other companies, you’ll need a new logo. People often refer to this as “Re-branding”. Business owners need this to re-establish not only the brand, but also the entirety of the company itself as a result of a specific occurrence in the past (e.g. new partnership or owner, name dispute with other businesses, negative impressions in the brand, etc.) Notable examples include Apple re-branding and World Wrestling Entertainment-World Wide Fund for Nature initials dispute.

If It Doesn’t Work Anymore, Change It


Unless you wanted to juxtapose your everything-minimalist furniture shop with an over-detailed, colorful sign emblazoning your brand name and logo on it, then you need a redesign. Logos are supposed to be a representation of your business. So perhaps it is fair and just (and significantly beneficial) for your logo to match with the brand in such ways that elegance, uniqueness, and the “image” of your business will not be compromised.

When You Feel the Need for Creative Change


Logos are creative elements designed to accompany the mind of the consumer to your brand. That explains why it is important to come up with a one-of-a-kind logo. Sure, your customers will recognize your logo, but they will eventually forget your business name. As an entrepreneur, you must feel the need to add creative aspects to your logo in order for your brand to be recognized even more in a larger scale and in a longer period of time. Take for instance the logo of Federal Express, Amazon and Formula 1 Racing.

How to Clean Your Store Signs

Because of its eye-appealing characteristics store signages such as LED open signs, business hours and LED boards are just a few of the things that attract potential customers to check out your shop. And the last thing you would want is to turn these colorful signs into “customer deterrents” instead of welcoming them because of its sloppy, dirty appearance.

Open Sign
Here’s an idea: Unplug your signage for a while to give it a nice makeover by cleaning it.

Cleaning your LED store sign is very easy as you think it is. In fact, it will take only about an hour tops to do this. Now, to help you do this the right way, here are a few quick steps and tips on how to clean your LED sign properly, and without acquiring any potential damage.
  • Set-up Your Space

Just like any other tasks, prepping up is very important. As for cleaning your LED signs, you need to have a clean microfiber cloth, water and some cotton buds. Next thing you need to do is to uninstall the LED sign. While some are comfortable cleaning their signs without the need to detach the signage, it is recommended to do so to be able for you to cover all the spots.
  • Spray and Wipe

Simply spray an ample amount of water (preferably distilled) on the microfiber cloth and wipe the front panel and the casing of the signage. Make sure not to apply too much pressure onto the signage to prevent any unwanted scratch and ding. For stubborn stains and grimes, you may use LED screen cleaning solution (same cleaning solution that is being used to clean LED TV panels). Keep in mind not to apply or spray the solution directly to the LED sign, as it may leave streaks or damage to the panel. This is also applicable with regular business signages, programmable LED signs and writable LED boards.
  • Dust and Dry

After removing all the dust and streaks, repeat the process, only this time, use a clean and dry microfiber cloth. This is to take off excess moist, dust or lint that could have been left out on the LED surface and the casing. Doing this will also ensure your LED sign is all dried out and ready for operations.
  • Cover All Corners

Using some cotton buds, check all corners and edges of the LED sign that you may have missed. Spray the swab with water to take off accumulated dusts then wipe it off using a dry swab.

Time to bring back your LED sign’s sparkling glory!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Quirky Ideas to Consider When Your LED Signage Conks Out


Most reliable LED open signs promise longevity, durability and robustness, not to mention perennial brilliance. True enough, LED signage manufacturers and sellers see to it that all of these requirements are tested to ensure total customer satisfaction. Although at times, these illuminating and colorful signage don’t live up to its promise merely because of factory defects, misuse, or for some strange occurrence, dies out with no particular reason. It’s not everyone’s fault, though.

What a “brilliant” idea for a sign! Photo courtesy: memeguy.com

Worry no more, as these things happen every once in a while. So instead of feeling bummed about losing the glaring glitz of your shop’s welcome open sign, or your restaurant’s glowing LED board menu, why not come up with quirky ideas for temporary signs to inform everyone your store is still “business as usual”.

Given the initial (and usual) troubleshooting steps, as well as warranty claims, here are some other tips to do when your LED signage conks out:

Throw back the traditional signage – This can never go wrong, especially for fine-dining restaurants, office firms, even bars and shops. Despite the immense popularity of LED signage, having a traditional open sign keeps the presentable, formal and straightforward character of an establishment. Just keep this open sign handy in your shop, along with 1 or 2 suction hooks, in case by any unfortunate circumstances your trusty LED sign bails out on you.

open sign
Go “Artsy” Over Your Business Sign – If you are planning to create a makeshift sign as your back-up plan, then we strongly recommend putting some effort into it. Add colors or caricatures to compensate your LED sign’s colorful vibe. You can use colored chalks, colored markers or any other eye-catching trinkets for this, but be sure not to over-do it so that customers won’t feel alienated or irritated because of your over-cluttered open sign. If you own a restaurant, go for a typography-driven approach; for comic book shops, it is advisable to do some superhero-inspired caricatures and fonts. Doing this can also extend your marketing reach by including promos available in your store.

Photo courtesy: Martha Stewart official website

Might As Well Say It with WIT: You’ve done a wonderful job doing your temporary welcome and open signs. But if you still feel the urge to outsmart competitors (with far more colorful and still working LED signage), blast funny, witty quotes to your “work of art” signage. Customers tend to feel entertained when they see witty welcome remarks or clever quotes outside store doors. Hence, they feel intrigued and compelled to buy stuff, or to say the least, check out what’s inside the shop, figuring out if there’s more to offer. Here’s one!

Enough said. (Photo courtesy: Holy Taco)

Signages are very important to all business, be it shops, stores, restaurants or offices. It is what informs the customer if your products or services are available. That’s why you need to ensure the efficiency and the condition of your open signs. And if any case it got damaged or dies out on you, cheer up! It’s not the end of your business. You can always replace it or if not, bring it to your trusty electrician to do some damage control. In the meantime, come up with other ways and workarounds to keep your business up and running. It wouldn’t hurt if you dash a little fun to your ventures, right?

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Positioning Your Open Sign The Right Way

Sure, your signage adds radiance and vibrant aura to your store, but placing it inside the bathroom just won’t do you and your shop any good.

Open SignWhen it comes to showcasing your LED open sign, positioning is everything. Knowing a strategic area to install your open sign matters, as it serves mainly as your usher, encouraging customers to visit your store. After all, that’s the reason why these things are here, right?

Think of it as an art piece on display. Flaunt your signage where customers could see it easily.

Open Sign by the Door Welcomes the Customers Warmly

Everyone should know this is pretty much basic. However, not all store owners know that open signs, particularly eye-catching LED signs, have an impact on potential customers. Most shoppers tend to pass through or walk-by instead when they see a store that doesn't have any signage, for the simple reason that they assume it’s not very welcoming, or closed to say the least. Make sure that your signage is clearly visible. Place it on your glass door to attract and engage customers in entering your shop.

You've Got to Mount It

If your store’s door or window is not glass, then the best way to showcase your LED signage is to mount it overhead by your store’s entrance wall. Bars and restaurants usually use this method of installing their signage. This can be tricky because you still have to consider the wirings and the security of the signage. To resolve this, just place a reinforced casing to protect the signage from damages. It may cost you a bit more; however it could drive more customers to your store.

Take It from the Inside

Installing an open sign can be installed inside your store as well, provided that the sign is still clearly visible to everyone. Ideally most store owners place their open sign on a certain spot that is parallel or opposite side of the store’s entrance.

No Blockers Allowed

Once installed or displayed, make sure that your open sign will not be blocked by anything such as a tree branch, traffic signs, billboards, outdoor ornaments, and street lights.

With the Lights Out

Never set up your LED open signs to an over-lit spot. This basically defeats the purpose of the LED sign’s flashy lights. Just go for spot where the brightness and tone of natural or ambient lighting is just right.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Using Programmable LED in Schools

Today, most of the schools around the region are already taking the leap in venturing out on digital signage. Gone are the days of old fashioned marquee and bulletin boards. Aside from its eye-catching and state-of-the-art characteristics, digital displays are highly-customizable and programmable, giving school administrators the freedom to create custom messages for various recipients, making it easy for school administrators to connect with the whole school community.

photo courtesy: goheels.com
That is why there’s no doubt why digital signs nowadays are becoming the latest trend when it comes to digital information, especially within the school premises. “Why?” you may ask. Here are some of the significant advantages in using programmable LED signs in schools:

School and Community Announcements

Today, programmable LED signs are slowly replacing marquee because of its convenience, effectiveness, efficiency and versatility, be it for announcing PTA meetings, school events, class suspensions, updates and even enrollment invitations for new interested students.

Uplifts the School Spirit during Sporting Activities

LED scoreboards are a staple in every school gym. Along with the running time and scores made by both visiting and home teams, it also exudes school spirit by means of flashing the school’s insignia while in the midst of wild cheers and “defense” chants. Great for showing off your school pride during an intense basketball game.

Serves as Directional Signs for Navigational Aid

LED sign as navigational aid

Programmable LED signs can also be utilized to provide directions and waypoints for locations of offices, washrooms, foyers, exits, gym, and school-related firms within the premises.

For School Traffic Advisories and Safety Board

This goes for pedestrian crossings, parking lot, bus stops, emergency exits and other places in the school that may impose danger and other hazards to students, as well as for quick broadcast during drills and emergencies.

Can be Used for School Promotion and Campus-Sponsored Contents to 

Might as well use it for marketing the school by means of promotional ads and school-approved advertisements, right? By doing this, schools, colleges and universities have a greater chances of faster return of investments.

If the School Benefits from it, So Does Mother Nature

Deployment of programmable LED display equates to paperless signage. Meaning, a much cleaner, clutter-less and eco-friendly campus with sophisticated means of communication may get your institution to a higher ranking.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Get Your Store’s Lighting Right

In owning a successful shop, say a restaurant or a book store, the formula does not simply end in renting a place out, showcase all you merch, and switch on the good ol’ trusty open sign. The first thing you need to keep in mind is the interior. Make sure the aura shop is in line with the product or services you are selling (motif,  theme, color palette, tone, etc.).

welcome-customers

This goes as well with your lighting scheme. Think of it this way: you wouldn't want to buy a pair of prescription eyeglasses in a sketchy, poorly-lit optical clinic, right? Let your customers feel welcomed with a good lighting.

Here are some pointers on how to exude the perfect lighting for your store:

Store and Lighting is to Body and Soul

Lighting brings the life to your store by giving the right and ample illumination it needs to become more lively vibrant and inviting, literally and metaphorically. That’s why you need to study the right warmth, shade and tone of the light.

Hit the Spot

Now that you have the correct bulbs, the next step is to find the perfect spot. Here’s a hint: you also need to base the desired area of the light to your nature of business. (e.g. If you own a bookstore, it is better to install the lighting fixtures right at the middle of the store). Keep in mind that creating a lighting plan can be tricky, so it is a-must to cover all the bases and consider every possible location within the area.

Let Your Products Take the Spotlight

Meaning, get your customer’s attention by showcasing your merchandise in a well-lit manner. If you are selling shoes, place a small spotlight right above it. Ensure the perfect load and angle of the beam. If it’s too bright, the customer will get too overwhelmed by the light, thus directing the attention to the glare instead of the featured item. If it’s too dimmed, the product will be too bland to look at.

Fixed vs. Movable 

Although their bulbs are interchangeable, fixed lights are stationary. It wouldn't hurt to add a separate set of movable lighting such as lamps, light stands and animated window signs to add more warmth to your shop. Another advantage of this is that you can always re-arrange and come up with various strategies to enhance your desired vibe even more.

Go For Energy Efficiency

Be cost-effective. But that doesn't mean you go for those cheap light bulbs. Granted they’re way less expensive, but will it last? Energy-efficient bulbs LED bulbs may go a bit pricier.  However if it means low electricity consumption, higher lumen output and lasts longer, then it is safe to say that it is a good investment for your store.

Once you've done this, chances of your store will likely be more successful. Or more noticeable to say the least.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Better Lives With Digital Signs

Digital signs are the face of advertising today.

Though neon signs have served many diners well back in the day, it is high time that we embrace the cutting-edge technology and savings that a scrolling LED sign offer us today.

Digital Signage Today, leading online resource for the digital signage and digital out-of-home industries, has published a very informative visual on the presence and significance of digital signs today.

digital-signage-today
Image source: www.smartdigitalsignage.ca

The digital billboards & signage industry is worth billions of dollars. At the time the infographic was published, the said emerging industry enjoyed a 23.2% increase in revenues globally. This amount easily translates to $ 1.41 billion. The United States is the largest global market for digital signs back in 2010. United Kingdom held the top spot in the European market for the same year. China was the fastest growing market globally in the same industry in 2010. Russia was the most promising European market at that time.

According to the infographic, 52% of Americans are exposed to place-based video screens every week. This increases to 70% of the American population when we talk about stats for every month. Those numbers are surely enough to get business owners like you or company CFOs to see the benefits of your investments in these new age digital signs.

Scrolling LED signs are not the only outdoor advertising tools that you can utilize. Here are other digital platforms that you can integrate with your advertising campaigns:

Digital Billboards
In-Store Displays
Pump-Top Digital Signage
Elevator Digital Signs
Lobby Signage
Storefront Signage
Mass Transit Signage on busses and subways
Point Of Sales (P.O.S.) Digital Signs
Shelf-Edge Digital Signs
Physician’s Network Signs
Digital Menu Boards
LED Video Scoreboards
Interactive Text-to-Screen Signage
Taxi Cab Digital Signage

The digital signage marketing of Marker’s Mark Distillery in 2010 was a great success. Since their main products are liquor, they strategically placed their advertising messages in office building lobbies during pre-happy hour. This resulted in a 29% increase in their brand awareness and an impressive 83% increase in the awareness of their advertisements.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Where to Display Programmable LED Signs

Programmable LED signs are both for indoor and outdoor usage. The main difference between indoor and outdoor programmable LED signs is that outdoor LED signs are often more durable than indoor signage. This is because outdoor programmable LED signs should be durable and resistant enough to withstand extreme weather and temperature fluctuations. However, the choice between indoor and outdoor programmable LED signs ultimately depends on the type of business establishment that will use it. For starters, when deciding where to place programmable LED signs in your building, here are some options to consider:

programmable-led-signsBuilding facades – High-rise structures are often the first choice among advertisers when it comes to selecting the best and most effective place to display a programmable LED sign. Building facades offer great visibility especially from longer distances. Keep in mind though, that the higher a programmable LED sign is display, the less it becomes visible to the audience, rendering it ineffective in the long run. Big advertisers are often those who choose this place of installation because they have the budget to rent the space and equipment to install programmable LED signs.

Poles – Displaying programmable LED signs on poles is the cheapest and easiest option not only because others have already done it before you but because LED sign manufacturers often provide the metal structure and screen, even though it involves additional charge. Programmable LED signs on poles are most effective on a height of 3/4m tall and supported by a double or single pole structure.

programmable-business-signs
Trucks/Vans – Mobile advertising is quickly catching up nowadays. With programmable LED signs installed on moving vehicles, businesses escape the hassle in applying for permits. For mobile advertising to work, the driver should drive through the most populated spots in the city. Parking for longer periods for passersby to absorb the message is also another way to do mobile advertising.

Doors – Indoor programmable LED signs are often found displayed on a business establishment’s door. This is to let consumers know that the establishment is open (or closed) for business. Other information displays include programmable business hour signs, small establishment signs, and promotional signs.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Make a Splash With Your Trade Show Participation

Earlier this week, we taught you a couple of pieces of advice regarding trade shows. let's round off the list with three more. Make your presence felt and make a different when attending trade shows with these:

tips-in-tradeshow
Image source: Corporate Snobs

Make sure to get comfortable. 
Trade show events can be really tiring with all the demonstrations and seminars available. Since you would most likely be walking around for a couple of hours, dress in smart casual to stay at ease. Simply pair your dark blue or khaki jeans with polo to keep your professional look. You may wear this ensemble with any pair closed shoes. Just keep in mind that in dressing for an industry event, your primary concerns should be comfort and creating a professional look. These two factors can surely keep you going for hours at the event.   

Never forget to promote your business during industry gatherings. 
Since you are attending an industry event, be prepared to rub elbows with industry leaders, manufacturers and other individuals involved in the digital signage industry. Make sure to keep your business cards ready as you network with like-minded individuals. You should also consider bringing in small promotional materials that are useful in the event. Pens, notepads and postcards with your logo and contact information can turn into your instant advertising in these important events.

And lastly, conduct a post-process. 
We’re quite sure that you are not attending the next LED advertising sign seminar just for fun since this type of event is capital intensive not only for your financial resource but also for your time and energy. Make sure to make your business trip productive by evaluating what you were able to accomplish and learn during your stay at the seminar. The outcomes are best placed side by side with your list of goals and expectations to see if they match. Also, don’t forget to share valuable industry news with your team to ensure that all of you are updated and on the same page.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Get Your Trade Show Groove

With so much to do for this coming second half of the year, what else would you like to make better so that your business can shine?

time-business

Many business owners would surely say they would like to increase their profit or outsmart their competitors in the game. In a bit, we’ll with you one of our recommended ways for doing so. If you need to boost the performance of your scrolling LED sign or the other areas of your business, we are suggesting you attend trade shows and industry events.
  
Today, we are sharing with you effective trade show tips that would help you maximize your trip and stay informed.

First, be an early bird. 
From pre-registering up until arriving on the day of the event, make it a habit to be ahead of time. Going right ahead of the schedule has a lot of perks including huge discounts on hotel room bookings, choosing your preferred seat on a seminar and meeting a couple of people to name a few.

early-bird-show

Make lists a list as well.
Maximize your participation in any trade show by being specific with what you want to accomplish. And more often than not, you have a number of things you’d like to do during the event. The most basic list you need should include the items that you intend to or wish purchase like an industry specific LED sign and other exclusive tools. You may also include an itinerary for attending demonstrations and seminars at the event.


PRO TIP: If the event would be in another state or country, maximize your fare and lodging by taking some off to explore the new place. Going on a short vacation from your work can help you charge or gain new ideas.

More trade show advice later this week.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Let Your Restaurant Be Energy Efficient

Still thinking twice on purchasing a LED open sign?


According to the Energy Star Guide for Restaurants, energy efficiency is a sound business practice that improves profitability, reduces greenhouse gas emissions, and conserves natural resources. And no one could have said it better.

energy-efficiency-businesses


The organization has put together a guide that aims to help restaurant owners like you save on energy and electrical costs. In the long run, these savings do not only translate to increased efficiency and profit. It also shows that you are a responsible business owner who takes part in saving our planet.

Restaurants generally consume more energy per square meter than other commercial establishments. Research done by Energy Star showed that restaurants use at least 5 times more energy than offices and retail stores. Quick-service restaurants (QSRs) can even use twice as much. More often than not, the high demand for energy in restaurants is due to the use of kitchen equipment which is built for rigorous commercial cooking.

Planning out saving procedures is the best way to minimize ballooning costs of these utility expenses. To avoid sacrificing the productivity of your kitchen and the quality of foods, restaurant owners should also consider investing in energy efficient kitchen equipment. These are sound investments for both short and long term.

Follow these cost saving tips from the Energy Star Guide for Restaurants to maximize saving potentials.

1.      Select ENERGY STAR qualified appliances
When buying new kitchen equipment, it is always best to think about the long term gains or losses you might experience. Paying a price which is slightly higher upfront for an energy-efficient unit can be compensated by the savings you will be able to make using that.

2.      Cut idle time
Leaving any equipment or lighting fixtures on when not in use can create produce unnecessary expenses. Aside from reflecting on your monthly electricity bill, keep them on can also affect the life cycle of these units. Make sure to create a startup/shutdown plan to monitor energy consumption and equipment use.

3.      Maintain and repair
Malfunctioning units such as freezer doors that do not close become instant energy leaks. Though they may seem too little to cause any problem, these minute details can have big impacts in your operation costs and energy consumption. Don’t let these daily wear and tear swell up your energy bills when you can do something about them.

4.      Cook wisely
Again, planning is the key. Check your menu for meals that can be cooked using more energy efficient equipment. You may opt to use ovens over rotisseries or griddles instead of broilers.

5.      Recalibrate to stay efficient
Maintain the performance of your equipment through regular recalibrations and performance checks. These units can fail, fall out of calibration or readjust due to regular use.