Southern California Sign Blog

Los Angeles Signs | Ground Mount Methods of Installation for Signs

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 @ 07:02 AM

GROUND MOUNT METHODS FOR INSTALLATION OF MONUMENTS, PYLON AND POLE SIGNS

The most common and effective ground mount methods of installation are:

Pouring a concrete pad is a safe way to prepare a site for signage. The concrete will be hard and dry when you are ready to install and the stands can be made at your leisure. To install simply bolt the plate at the bottom of the stand to the concrete base using Hilti-type expanding fasteners.
Pros: Easy install, easily removable.
Cons: Sign is not theft proof.

If more permanence is required, dig a big hole, put the stand in the hole, and fill with concrete.
Pros: Very durable.
Cons: Difficult to remove.

Some sites do not allow concrete for environmental reasons. This means digging a bigger hole and filling with rocks before covering with earth.
Pros: Environmentally friendly.
Cons: Time-consuming, not as durable.

Always remember to check with your local Zoning and Planning Departments before installing any projects.

If you have any questions, please give us a call at The Sign Studio - (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at thesignstudio@sbcglobal.net.

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Blog Picture of Monument Install Methods

Topics: Ground Mount Sign Installation, Monument Sign Installation, Pylon and Pole Signs

Signs Los Angeles | Architectural Sign Install Techniques

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Fri, Feb 25, 2011 @ 07:02 AM

Architectural Sign Install Techniques for Wall Mount Methods

There are many ways to install an architectural signs. Here are some of the most successfully used methods along with some illustrations for you to decide what will work best for the look you are trying to obtain.

WALL MOUNT METHODS

Edgeclips are clipped onto the edges of the signs and then fastened to the
mounting surface.
Pros: Good looking, easy to change graphic.
Cons: Not very strong.

Adhesives provide an alternate mounting method. Options include liquid adhesives like contact cement or construction glue and roll adhesives like double-sided tape and mounting films.
Pros: Can be very strong, some epoxies and tapes are stronger than welding. Invisible.
Cons: May never come off.

In some circumstances studs can be attached to the backs of graphic panels. These studs
can be glued into inserts placed in the receiving surface.
Pros: Strong and invisible.
Cons: More expensive, difficult to remove.

Framing systems allow for strong, invisible mechanical fasteners to be used.
Pros: Strong, tamper-proof and invisible fasteners.
Cons: More expensive and highly visible frame.

Graphics can be mounted onto surfaces using mechanical fasteners.
Pros: Strongest attachment method, easily removable.
Cons: Visible hardware.

Frameclips are similar to Edgeclips except that the attachment is through the face of the graphic.
Pros: Good looking, strong.
Cons: Expensive.

French cleats are commonplace for mounting to flat, vertical surfaces. Cleats must be straight and smooth and perfectly aligned.
Pros: Strong and invisible.
Cons: More expensive, graphics cannot be flush to the wall.

If you have any questions, please give us a call at The Sign Studio - (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at thesignstudio@sbcglobal.net.

 

Wall Mount 1

Wall Mount 2
Wall Mount 3

Topics: Architectural Signs, Wall Sign Installation, Edgeclips, Frameclips, French Cleats

Los Angeles Signs | Checklist for Ordering Outdoor Signage

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Tue, Feb 22, 2011 @ 07:02 AM

Checklist for Ordering Outdoor Signage

Before you select a sign for your business there are several things you need to consider. A competent sign company can help you with the answers to some of these questions if you are unsure how to obtain them.

1) Who are your customers?
Potential customers for your business are people who reside in your trade area. Most of your customers come from the immediate area within a half mile to a mile of your business location. Trade areas come in assorted shapes and sizes depending upon the business.

2) How do you get information on potential customers?
Plot a dot map of your customers as soon as you begin business. This is easily done by plotting the addresses of people who stop in your store (and particularly of those who purchase) as a dot on a street map of your city. Within a few months time you will have a fairly clear idea of the trade area from which you are drawing your customers. You will then be able to decide what type of sign would best meet the needs of the people in that trade area. For example, if your customers can only reach you by automobile or you are located on a very busy street, the type of sign that you use will be very different than if you have a shopping center location and people must walk to your store from parking lots.

Obtain your street profile from a city traffic engineer. Since your sign communicates to people who pass your business establishment, you can direct your message to potential customers if you know what type of traffic passes your door. Your city traffic engineer can provide information which will tell you: where people begin and end their trips, how people travel, when people travel by time of day, why people travel, and where they park when they reach a destination. Even small cities and towns have traffic volume maps available to tell you how many people pass by your business every day.

Know how many new people move to your area each year. This is a potential market for your business. This type of information can be obtained from any board of realtors, chamber of commerce or police department.

3) How are you going to communicate with the customers?
In order to communicate effectively, a sign must be noticeable and readable.

A sign must be noticeable. After a while a sign becomes part of the landscape. It loses some of its ability to attract attention. By periodically changing some small design element or by using changeable copy, a sign can continue to attract interest. Time and temperature devices or rotating and moving parts can be used to maintain interest in a commercial message. Time and temperature devices or rotating and moving parts can be used to maintain interest in a commercial message. Time and temperature units also provide a needed public service.

A sign must be readable. A sign needs to be large enough to read. You need to know how far a person if from your store when he first sees your sign and the real speed of traffic on your street. With this information, a competent sign company can use a formula to calculate the necessary size for your design and build you an effective sign.

4) What are you trying to say?
Decide on a message that is clear and simple.
Focus on key words. Choose one or two words which describe your business. Clever or strange names may only attract certain customers.

Be Brief. The cleaner and clearer the message, the more impact it has. Listing or names or unclear symbols confuse rather than communicate.

5) What image are you trying to portray?
Design of your sign is very important. Your sign tells people a lot about your business. Stark simple design and materials may suggest discount prices and no frills. Elegant and expensive sign materials may suggest luxury goods and services. Two basic design considerations are important when ordering a sign.

Physical elements of sign design. These include considerations such as size, placement, materials and structure. The size of the sign is an important consideration for your business. The biggest sign that you can afford may not necessarily be the best one for your needs. A sign which is either too big or too small will not communicate your message effectively. The number of signs is also important. Too many signs compete with one another and reduce the effectiveness of your message by presenting an image of confusion to potential customers.

The materials used for your sign determine its appearance and performance. For example, differences in cost, appearance, color, durability, flexibility and reaction to extreme weather conditions can be found in the many types of plastics available. The structure of a sign also contributes to its effectiveness. Pole covers and cantilevered construction help portray an attractive message.

Graphic elements of sign design. Graphic elements of design include layout of the message, colors, lettering, shape symbolism, harmony, and daytime versus nighttime lighting conditions.

Legibility is a test of good design. If your sign is well designed, it will be easy to read. Legibility means that the letters or characters on the sign are distinct from one another. Some color combinations of background and letters give excellent legibility while others are very poor. To test your sign's legibility, drive past your business and see if you can read it from a distance. Look at it both day and night. Some signs are difficult to read because of illumination problems such as glare from street lights, signs on nearby business establishments, or shadows caused by buildings. A well-designed sign blends with the environment, has a message impact and overcomes viewing problems.

6. How much should your sign cost?
You should consider several factors when determining the cost of your on-premise sign.

A sign is an investment. Your sign is one of the most permanent parts of your business and is exposed to weather and constant use. The average life of signs varies from five to eleven years, depending on type of materials used, construction and other factors. Find out how many years of service to expect from your sign. It pays to purchase good materials if you intend to use the sign over a period of years.

Maintenance costs. No business can afford to have its sign fall into disrepair. A dilapidated sign tells the public that you are not concerned with your business image or their visual environment. Some types of signs are virtually maintenance free while other require more attention. Find out how to replace burnt out bulbs or tubes in your sign.

Energy consumption. New technological developments now enable some types of signs to achieve energy savings without sacrificing effects. Inquire about new energy saving bulbs and internal materials.

Owning or leasing. This may be more economical for a new business, especially if there is any chance that logos or names may change in the first few years of operation. Statistics show that if a small business fails, it will happen somewhere between the first and second year of operation. Leasing a sign during this period of time might help save some of the initial capital needed for operating expenses.

Custom or standardized. Some large companies offer standardized types of signs which are cheaper than signs which are custom designed and constructed. Many of these standardized units can utilize ingenious design techniques to bring forth creativity and individuality. Often the standardized units can be arranged in different configurations depending on your needs. Some standardized sign units use the highest quality materials and are designed to be relatively maintenance free. Mass production enables these units to be sold much cheaper than if designed and produced from scratch.

7) Signs communicate in a shared environment.
A sign's ability to send its message beyond its locations requires that you be sensitive to the effects of your message on others. Since you share your space with others, consider their rights and sensibilities too. They are potential customers.

Consider city or town planning goals and regulation when ordering a sign. Some types of signs are not permitted. Determine what the regulations are in your community before you discuss design with a sign designer. Most sign companies are well aware of the regulation in any given community and can guide you in selecting a sign which is not in violation of the law.

For further information or if you have any questions, please contact The Sign Studio at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at thesignstudio@sbcglobal.net

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Effective Signs Image 2

Topics: Commercial Signs, Outdoor Signs, Business Signs

Los Angeles Signs | Durability of Vinyl Vehicle Graphics and Wraps

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Mon, Feb 21, 2011 @ 07:02 AM

What is the DURABILITY OF VINYL VEHICLE GRAPHICS?

Durability of vehicle graphics is often a grey area. Some seem to last forever, others deteriorate quickly. Clients spending big money on a vehicle wrap are often concerned about this issue. The big question always is, how tough are your vehicle graphics? What is the warranty?

There are four factors that determine the durability of vehicle graphics:
• The quality of the mounting surface.
• The quality of the graphic products used.
• The installation methods used.
• Maintenance of the graphic during its lifetime.

WHAT'S UNDERNEATH?
The type of surface that the graphics will be mounted to has a major, but often overlooked, role when it comes to the long-term durability of vehicle graphics. For example, if the vehicle no longer has its factory paintjob, the quality of the repaint has a major effect on the adhesion of the graphics. The graphics might stick well to the paint, but if the paint doesn't stick to the vehicle, all is lost. Some unpainted vehicle surfaces, such as aluminum truck boxes, stainless steel tanker bodies or fiberglass box walls, may interfere with proper adhesion as well. Some graphic films specifically void any warranties on such substrates, others recommend various surface preparation techniques before application. Check with the manufacturer and proceed with caution. Preparation of the mounting surface prior to installation can have a huge effect on any graphic's durability. Not only must the vehicle's surface be squeaky clean, but all surface waxes and/or remnants of polish compounds should be removed as well. This can be done using a clean soft cloth and rubbing alcohol. A poorly prepared mounting surface will virtually guarantee early failure of an otherwise perfect wrap.

WHAT'S ON TOP?
The single largest factor in graphic durability has to be the graphic itself. This is a complex mix of print media, ink and overlaminate. All three items have to be carefully matched for maximum compatibility. Fortunately, manufacturers and sign professionals usually offer recommendations on which combinations work the best for their products and installations. Those with warranties only offer the maximum guarantees on specific tried and tested product combinations. Warranties on products range from one to seven years depending on the inks and overlaminates that are used. Recommended products are Avery Denninson, 3M, MACtac, Oracal and Arlon. All products offer different warranties so make sure you ask your Sign Professional what products they use.

WHO'S BEHIND THE SQUEEGEE?
Installation techniques are another critical aspect that effect long-term durability. Manufacturers' directions for each type of graphic material give specific instructions for installation that should be carefully followed. Special care must be taken when conforming the graphic film around complex surface shapes. These are the most likely areas to fail later. The more complex the surface, the more chances there are for tenting. The more cuts that have to be made in the graphic panel in order to make it fit the shapes, the more chances of edge failure. The more stretching that has to be done over convex shapes, the more chance of film cracking in the future. Anyway, you get the idea. Anything that you have to do to the graphic to alter its factory shape will affect long-term durability.

WHAT'S THE PLAN?
Maintenance after installation is the most overlooked aspect of durability for vehicle graphics. The client who might never consider missing an oil change might not help his wrap continue looking its best simply because they don't understand how to keep it safe. Keeping the vehicle clean and free from dirt, grease, salt, acid and drew build-up will help tremendously to extend the life of the wrap. The non-vertical or horizontal areas of a vehicle graphic can be the most challenging areas in which to maintain durability.

Here are some post-installation precautions that can improve long-term performance:
• Cleaning the vehicle should be done with a liquid, nonabrasive cleaner that has a ph value between 3 and 11 and no strong solvents in it.
• If using a pressure washer, make sure it has less than 2,000 psi of pressure; and hold the nozzle more than 12" from the graphic surface.
• Special care has to be taken around exposed graphic edges as well. Wash the vehicle with a soft cloth or sponge, not a hard brush, and avoid excessive scrubbing.
• Checking the graphic regularly can also help to prolong its life. Loose edges should be promptly repaired using an edge seal product.

THE LONG HAUL
Vehicle graphics can last a long time, or a short time. Either option may be required on any particular project. The short-term graphic is easy, but the long-term graphic requires planning, expertise and maintenance. It involves a delicate partnership between manufacturer, producer and client, but can produce amazing results when all of the stars are aligned.

REMEMBER....................

Key to success:
- Prior to installation, not only must the vehicle's surface be squeaky clean, but all surface waxes and/or remnants of polish compounds should be removed as well.
- Maintaining a wrap's good looks involves some effort from the client, such as using non-abrasive cleaners, avoiding stiff-bristle cleaning brushes, and checking frequently for loose edges.
- The quality of the installation will also affect a graphic's chances at long term durability. Careful attention to detail, making sure not to over-stretch the vinyl over curved surfaces and using a minimum of cuts and pinholes all add up to a more durable graphic.
- Failures generally happen first along areas where the vinyl was stretched to conform to dramatic surface features.

If you have any questions or need further information, please give The Sign Studio a call at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at thesignstudio@sbcglobal.net

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Vehicle Wrap Pictures

Topics: Vehicle Wraps, Vehicle Grapics, Car Wraps, Vinyl Graphics

Los Angeles Signs | Understanding the Value of Signage

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Fri, Feb 18, 2011 @ 07:02 AM

Understanding the Value of Signage

There is an old axiom that the 3 keys to successfully selecting real estate are "location, location and location". The 3 keys that guide the successful selection and development of commercial properties are Visibility, Accessibility and Parking.

An effective on-premise sign is a critical component of visibility, and the sign should receive the same careful attention as these other components. Without a properly designed and placed on-premise
business sign, a commercial site cannot function at its full economic potential.

This section presents information about:
- understanding the value of signage
- determining what an effective sign will mean for your business' success
- working with and possibly correcting problems with existing signage, and
- using signage to change customer behaviors.

The Functions of the On-Premise Sign
An effective on-premise sign is a critical component of visibility, and the sign should receive the same
careful attention as these other components.

1. It develops a memory for a location and the products or services available at the location.
2. It reinforces a memory and extends recall of other advertising efforts.
3. It attracts new customers by prompting first-time or impulse visits or purchases.
4. It modifies customary purchase decisions or habits. Changeable copy and temporary window
signs are especially effective in encouraging variation from accustomed consumption patterns. (For more about modifying customary purchase habits, see the section that follows.)

Branding a Site
One measure of how effective or valuable an on-premise sign is to its site is demonstrated by how well it helps to brand the site. A sign "brands" a location, just as a product label brands the product. If an attractive image is not communicated by the business' sign, the business will rarely convey its true message, or get the clientele it seeks.

Every site development and sign program strategy will benefit if the on-premise sign is made the focal
point of the site. If a site is "signcentric", it means that the sign catches the customer's attention and leads him to the target business. A measurable positive effect on gross revenues should immediately result from:

Developing and Measuring Readership
How do you know if your sign is (or is not) branding your site for future reference by potential customers?
You determine readership.

Readership advertising effectiveness tests whether a message is effectively speaking to the intended
audience. Two of the most commonly used research techniques are the recognition and recall tests discussed above. Rating services conduct the tests and tabulate the results for all major-media
advertisers (i.e., television and newspaper advertisers rely on Nielsen Ratings Services). Small business owners not engaged in franchised or chain business operations, however, usually do not have access to national rating service readership tabulations; these independent small business owners may require the services of a local market researcher to obtain readership measures. Often, on-premise sign companies and trade associations will assist in compiling data.

Why do you want to measure readership? Without knowing the effectiveness of your signage, you won't know how well you are doing, or what you might want to change. For your greatest success - with a sign and therefore with your business - measuring readership is a diagnostic tool so you can fix whatever is not working, and increase what is working.

The importance of signage to mobile consumers is underlined by the fact that many are in a hurry. By way of example, Burger King Corporation conducted a survey over several weeks. The survey results were part of evidence submitted in a legal action brought by Burger King (among others) against Agoura Hills, California, to prevent the removal of its freeway-oriented, high rise on-premise sign as required under a new sign code. The Burger King sign was visible to the Ventura Freeway; the building was not.
Surveys were conducted at Quick Service Food (QSF), family and atmosphere restaurants. The
participants were asked how they first became aware of the restaurant. Here are the results.

How did you first become aware of this restaurant?
The spontaneous nature of the QSF visits at 35% has implications for most business strategies,
particularly advertising in the form of on-premise signage. Burger King and its co-plaintiffs won the lawsuit, and the City was permanently enjoined from enforcing its high-rise pole sign ban against them. (See, Denny's Inc., et.al. v. City of Agoura Hills, 56 Cal.App. 4th 1312, 66 Cal. Rptr 2d 382 (1997)).

In another example, The Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) has trip generation rates that are
derived from counts taken at the driveway of various land uses. While typical trip generation rates are
Participants' Responses Quick Service Food (% of responses) Family Restaurant (% of responses)
Atmosphere Restaurant (% of responses)
Saw it (the sign) while passing 35% 26% 13%
Always knew 29% 27% 19%
Word of mouth 14% 30% 54%
Advertising 10% 6% 4%
All other 6% 7% 7%
Don't know 6% 4% 3%

Derived from counts taken at the driveways of various land uses, not all trips generated at the driveway represent new trips made for the express purpose of entering the site; instead some are made by motorists who did not set out for the site, but who enter it as an intermediate stop on the way to or from another destination. This type of stop is referred to by the Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) as a "pass-by trip"; for our purposes, it is defined as an "impulse" stop.

The percentage of pass-by trips or impulse stops varies by land use. The following table sets out ITE
estimates regarding the percentage of stops attributable to motorists for whom the site is not a scheduled destination. The table demonstrates that impulse trade is very important to many businesses. Effective onpremise communication can help persuade passersby to stop and shop.

In the modern marketplace, the right place-based advertising will effectively and economically permit the local shopkeeper to compete, even with the mass merchandiser or large retailer.

Acquiring New Customers
In 1995, the California Electric Sign Association (CESA) and the International Sign Association (ISA)
commissioned a major study of on-premise signage performance by the University of San Diego. This
study had two parts.

Part I of the study involved analysis of a group of variables, including signage, location, hours of
operation, population demographics and geographic characteristics on sales at 162 southern California locations of a major fast-food chain. These variables were tested at each location to predict the impact of on-premise signage upon:
1. annual sales revenues
2. annual number of transactions
3. the average dollar amount spent per transaction.
The results of the study indicated that the number of signs at a particular site has a significant and
positive impact on both the annual sales revenues and number of annual customer transactions. For
example, from the results of the study, the researchers were able to predict:
Type of Land Use Impulse-Stop Percentages
Shopping Centers:
Larger than 400,000 sf Gross Area 20%
Between 100,000 to 400,000 sf Gross Area 25%
Smaller than 100,000 sf Gross Area 35%
Convenience Market 40%
Discount Club/Warehouse Store 20%
Fast Food Restaurant 40%
Sit Down Restaurant 15%
Service Station 45%
Supermarket 20%

1. On average, one additional on-premise sign resulted in an increase in annual sales revenues of
4.75%. This translates to a $23,750 increase in average sales revenues for a typical store in the
study group with annual sales of $500,000.
2. On average, one additional on-premise sign increased the annual number of transactions by
3.93%. This translates into more than 3,900 additional transactions for a store with an annual
average of 100,000 transactions.
3. On average, one additional 36-square-foot wall sign added $0.06 per transaction, while one
additional 144-square-foot pole sign added $0.78 per transaction.
Part II of the study involved analyzing seven years of weekly sales data for "Pier 1 Imports" to measure the effects of modifications, additions, or removal of on-premise signage on sales performance.

The results showed that "on-premise signage has a statistically significant and financially substantive
impact on the revenues of a site [and]... is a significant constituent of the factors causing the success of a retail endeavor." In brief:
1. The addition of new signage to previously unsigned buildings, and the replacement of existing
signage (generally, with larger signs) resulted in an average revenue increase of 5%.
2. The addition of a pole sign, or a plaza identity sign including the store's name, resulted in an
average increase in weekly sales of 5-10%. The increase was attributed by the researchers to the
new signs' enhancement of site visibility to passing traffic.
3. The addition of small directional signs indicating entrance and exit routes resulted in weekly sales
increases ranging from 4-12%. The increases were attributed to the signs' ability to guide a sitebound
shopper more than any specific advertising effect.
These increases in revenues, as a result of signage, demonstrate the positive effect on profitability at a
specific site, especially given that normal profits in the retail industry are approximately 1-2%.
The California Electric Sign Association (CESA), the International Sign Association (ISA), the Sign User
Council of California, and the Business Identity Council of America sponsored the study. A summary of the findings appears in The Economic Value of On-Premise Signage, a compendium of signage-related research results and articles (e.g., sign amortization; copyright and trademark protection.) The booklet was published jointly in 1997 by CESA and ISA.

Modifying Customary Purchase Habits
One of the primary goals of advertising is to change purchase behaviors. Effective advertising can
increase purchases within discrete segments of the market by introducing "intervening opportunities"
along customary travel paths. This is especially so in highly discretionary areas, such as quick service
foods and economy lodging, yet it holds true, also, for the business with more specialized products or
services to offer.

Generally, a business' fixed and variable costs should be covered from a stable consumer pool, with profits coming in from unexpected sources. The right sign often prompts an unplanned stop, or changes the customer's mind once he is on the premises. Changeable copy and temporary window signs are especially effective in encouraging variation from accustomed consumption patterns. Because temporary or variable message signage is relatively inexpensive, the dollars generated by such signage usually
represent pure profit.

It is estimated that 35-50 percent of the consumer population today shops outside their local area.
Legible, conspicuous on-premise signage will assist in attracting a large percentage of these non-local
and newcomer consumers. Further, an effective on-premise sign provides 24-hour exposure of its
message to a large pool of potential customers at a fraction of the cost (when depreciated over several
years) of other media. The lower the cost to obtain customer memory or top-of-mind awareness, the
higher the return on advertising dollars.

The Signage Appraisal Process
Like real estate, signage has a value that can actually be measured or appraised. The visibility component to a real estate site typically encompasses more than the traditional sign out front.

How is an appraisal of a sign done?
The three traditional approaches are:
1. Cost of Replacement (or Substitution). The signage appraisal method applies a cost replacement approach to determine the cost of replacing a sign's commercial communication or
advertising value with other forms of advertising, such as newspaper, television, and radio
advertisements. It is not used to measure the cost of replacing the physical structure of the sign, as
is the common measure of value in building or home appraisals.
2. Market Comparison. Generally speaking, the market recognizes premium prices for those
commercial properties with the best visibility. Outdoor advertising structures such as billboards or
bus shelters have recognized buying, selling, and leasing markets. The market sales comparison
approach as applied to the visual communication component of signage in its many forms may
measure the differentials of rents in the market. Customer surveys also may be developed, tested
and analyzed. The sales per square foot of similarly situated sites with varying levels of signage or
varying ability to be seen via the passing traffic may also be analyzed.
3. Income Flow or Capitalization. This approach is used to ascertain the present value of the
anticipated future income to be generated by a property over its remaining useful life. For the
purposes of signage appraisal, this method focuses on income generated by customers who are
prompted to stop solely by the sign. The retailer's gross retail margins are analyzed and then
capitalized.

This analysis is complicated by alternative signage forms such as business form or product franchising or chains where the system is integrated into networks of retail sites supported by national advertising (media) programs. The fundamentals of valuation and evaluation start with understanding that signs are commercial speech. Additionally signs are relied upon and used by consumers to make and influence their shopping and purchasing decisions.

Highest and Best Use Analysis
Prior to the above described three-part appraisal process, a highest and best use analysis of the site is undertaken. This analysis establishes the most profitable use of a site in light of any legal, physical or financial constraints. Highest and best use (as applied to signage) means that the on-premise sign is viewable by the intended audience (i.e., passing motorists, pedestrians), and that its copy can
communicate as it's meant to (i.e., is clearly visible, legible and understandable by the intended audience).

If you have any questions, please give us a call at The Sign Studio (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at thesignstudio@sbcglobal.net 

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Topics: sign advertising, Value of Signs, Sign Development

Los Angeles Signs | How Signs Are Effective

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Thu, Feb 17, 2011 @ 07:02 AM

Signs Are Effective

Your sign is an integral part of your advertising program along with the other forms of commercial communication such as television, radio, newspapers, magazines, and billboards. There are four basic criteria used to judge the effectiveness of these advertising media: (1) coverage of the trade area, (2) repetition of a message, (3) readership of a message, and (4) cost per thousand exposures of a message. Two other criteria important for the small business owner are (5) availability and (6) ease of use. Let's see how signs measure to the above criteria.

1) Signs are oriented to your trade area. Signs do not waste your resources by requiring you to pay for wasted advertising coverage. The people who see your sign are the people who live in your trade area.

2) Signs are always on the job repeating your message to potential customers. Your on-premise sign communicates to potential customers twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, week after week, month after month, year after year. Every time people pass your business establishment they see your sign. The mere repetition of the message will help them remember your business.

3) Nearly everyone reads signs. Signs are practical to use for nearly everyone is used to looking at signs and using signs, even small children. Studies have shown that people do read and remember what is on signs. When special items are displayed, sales increase for these particular items within the store.

4) Signs are inexpensive. When compared to the cost of advertising in some other media, the on-premise sign is very inexpensive. Table 1 indicates the cost-per-thousand-exposures for various media in a given type of community. Unless your trade area encompasses an entire city or region, where you must rely upon broad based media coverage, there is no better advertising dollar value than your on-premise sign.

5) Signs are available to each and every shop owner. There is no need to schedule the use of your sign. Your sign is available to you whenever you need it and to be used however you please.

6) Signs are easy to use. No special skills or resources are needed to operate a sign once it has been installed. If it is an illuminated sign, all you need to do is flip the switches and that may not be necessary with timing equipment. Once the initial expenditures are made no special resources or professional services are needed. You need only operate and maintain your sign.

For further information or if you have any questions, please contact The Sign Studio at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at thesignstudio@sbcglobal.net

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Effective Signs Image 3

Topics: Signs, sign advertising, Effective Signs

Los Angeles Signs | Signs Are Your Marketing Tool!

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Wed, Feb 16, 2011 @ 07:02 AM

SIGNS AS A MARKETING TOOL!

Have you considered the impact that your sign has on your business?Let's discuss what signage can do for your business, and how signs can be used to your advantage.

Introduction
Signs are one of the most efficient and effective means of communication. Signs help people find you; they reach people who are passing by your establishment; they present an image of your business. In short, signs, tell people who you are and what you are selling.
Signs are such a powerful communication medium that it is difficult to estimate the extent of their influence. Other media require the directed attention of the person receiving the message. Signs, however, can convey a message while creating a mood or feeling of atmosphere. It is not necessary for people to give full attention to your sign in order to derive meaning from its presence.

What Is a Sign?
A sign is the most direct form of visual communication available. In fact, so many people use signs without a second thought that it is easy to overlook their importance. When we cannot talk to other people directly in a given location, we tack up signs: wet paint, beware of dog, enter here, garage sales, etc. signs are the only form of mass communication directly available to everyone - they are the people's street communication system.

What Signs Can Do for Your Business
 - Signs perform three major communications functions for your business; they give information and direction, provide a format for street advertising, and build your image.
 - Signs Give Information About Your Business and Direct People to Your Business Location.
 - Signs index the environment so people can find you. This is especially true for travelers, new members of your community, and impulse shoppers who may be on a journey to purchase a particular good or service which you sell. Americans are mobile. Each year 40 million of us travel over 1.7 trillion miles by automobile and approximately 19 per cent of us change our place of residence. A primary source of customers for your business is the large number of people who are new to your community or who may be just passing through. Your sign is the most effective way of reaching this mobile or transient group of potential customer.
 - Signs can correct a poor location by substituting effective communication for poor site characteristics. If your business is located on a site which is not visible or in a building which does not correspond with the goods or services offered, your sign can overcome this disability. For example, most buildings are not built to conform to the design needs of any particular type of tenant. Without an effective sign it is often impossible to determine what type of business is being conducted in a given building. In addition, when your site is located off a busy traffic artery or in an area which is not easily accessible your sign can communicate to people who are passing on a busy street several blocks away. If you are located off a busy freeway but far from an exit, your sign becomes your main device for directing people to your business. High-rise signs are used when a business is located away from potential customers' normal pathways of travel.

Signs Are Street Advertising
Your sign provides an easily recognizable display format for the goods or services you are selling. For most businesses the street is where potential customers are. The message conveyed on the street reaches people who are close enough to make a purchase.

Street advertising also helps people develop a memory of your business name and the products and services you sell. People tend to buy from businesses they know.

Signs can build an image for your business and help you identify with the market segment you are trying to reach.

Through materials and design, a sign can appeal to a given group of potential customers. For example, some firms attempt to capture the youth market, others senior citizens, others unmarried single people and so forth. If you have a particular market segment that you wish to attract to your business, your sign can be an important means of bringing these people in.

The Advantages of Signs
On-premise signs are your most effective and efficient means of commercial communication because they are inexpensive, available, practical, easy to use, always on the job, and directly oriented to the trade area of your business.

For further information or if you have any questions, please contact The Sign Studio at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at thesignstudio@sbcglobal.net

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The Sign Studio Image - Signs As A Marketing Tool

Topics: Banners, Marketing Signs, Billboards and Advertising

Los Angeles Signs | Sign Makeover - Revitalize Your Business!

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Mon, Feb 14, 2011 @ 07:02 AM

Revitalize Your Business with a Sign Makeover

Your signs say a lot about who you are and what you do. That's why it's critical that you display the right signs and graphics for your business, event or organization. Sign makeovers from The Sign Studio can help make a big difference in your success.

Whether you want a few simple updates, or are in need of a complete sign and graphics makeover, we work with you to understand your specific sign needs. THE SIGN STUDIO makes it simple for you to bring your creative ideas to life or, we can design something customized to your specifications.

Keys to an Effective Sign Makeover

• Photos in advertising create 300% greater recall than ads without photos.*
• Full-color graphics create the highest awareness of all sign categories. **
• Colored backgrounds organize information and enable viewers to read it 26% faster. ***

* Based on a Direct Marketing Association study on color
** Based on a 3M marketing study on visual merchandising
*** Source: Pennsylvania College of Optometry

If you have any further questions or need any information, please contact The Sign Studio at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at thesignstudio@sbcglobal.net

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Sign Makeover Before and After

Topics: Sign Makeover, Sign Consultant, Sign Ideas, Revitalize Sign

Los Angeles Signs | Is It Time To Evaluate Your Signs? Sign Makeover?

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Fri, Feb 11, 2011 @ 07:02 AM

It's Time to Evaluate Your Signage!

Signage is often overlooked, but what does your sign say about your company...

• Do you look open for business?
• Welcoming to customers?
• Is your sign easy to read and spot from the road?

Signage can help answer the following questions:

• What type of business are you?
• Who are you trying to reach?
• Is your business thriving?

A little cosmetic work can refresh your business. A decaying or fading sign reflects poorly upon a business. First impressions are key and you only have one opportunity to make them. Have you considered a sign face lift?

A business with no sign, is a sign of no business!

Without a sign:

• Your business has no identity
• A lack of business traffic

The Sign Studio will work within your budget to help you form the identity you're looking for. Don't go another day without signage, or a sign face lift!

If you have any further questions or need any information, please contact The Sign Studio at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at thesignstudio@sbcglobal.net

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 Sign Makeover Before and After

Topics: New Sign Needed, Need Sign Makeover, Sign Facelift, Evaulate Signs

Los Angeles Signs | Sign Variance - Will I need one?

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Mon, Feb 7, 2011 @ 07:02 AM

SIGN VARIANCE - What is that? Why do I need a Sign Variance?

It is important to work with your sign professional and local zoning department when designing your business signage. A quick check on the zoning/building code will give you a guideline to use when developing your signage.

Sign Variance Picture

Sign variances become necessary when unique circumstances exist for a property that do not allow for adequate identification of the business. Most sign variances are requested for the purpose of exceeding a municipality's square footage or setback allowances. A quasi-judicial board of elected community members will hear your case and make a decision based on the characteristics of your specific request. Many communities request that you consider and provide answers to the Duncan Factors (used for consideration of area requests).

These are seven factors which the board must answer before approving your variance request. Please find these factors, summarized below:

1). Will the property provide a reasonable return without the variance?
2). Is the variance substantial?
3). Will the surrounding properties be adversely effected by the variance?
4). Will the variance inhibit government services (fire, police, ems)?
5). Is the hardship self-inflicted?
6). Is there a reasonable alternative to this variance?
7). Does the variance follow with the keeping of the zoning code? (Minimum amount needed)

If you have any further questions or need any information, please contact The Sign Studio at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at thesignstudio@sbcglobal.net.

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Topics: Sign Permits, Sign Variance, Sign Codes, Zoning Sign Codes, Building Sign Codes

Los Angeles Signs | What is a Blade Sign?

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Fri, Feb 4, 2011 @ 07:02 AM

What are Blade Signs ?

Blade signs are often used when you're looking to attract pedestrians or drivers who don't see your storefront because they are traveling perpendicular to the front of your business. So while they may not be able to see your front sign, they will see your blade sign. Blade signs are often illuminated both on the front and back with 2 faces, however they also hang from a variety of different brackets with a cut-out design. Our custom-made blade signs and bracket solutions are eye catching and built/constructed to withstand all the elements. The Sign Studio uses top grade materials. There are so many variations in materials and colors, as well as mounting options. Single or double-sided, illuminated or non-illuminated, our blades are engineered to project your message and grab the attention of pedestrian and passerbys.

If you have any questions, please give us a call at The Sign Studio 818-843-9200 or send us an e-mail at thesignstudio@sbcglobal.net.
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Blade Sign Pictures

Topics: Blade Signs, Hanging Signs, Illuminated Blade Signs, Non-Illuminated Blade Signs, Bracket Hanging Signs