Brands often undervalue the power a strong brand personality can have on customers. Brand personality isn’t just a logo but the characteristics your customers see and, ideally, identify with. It’s what separates your business from the competition. Creative graphics make you memorable. We don’t remember people with bland personalities, and the same applies to signage.
Opportunities to produce brand personality are all around you. In-store signage is a perfect example. Signs as practical wayfinding and information markers exist in every retail environment, but their potential is vastly underutilized. If signs are used in your store for functional purposes, then you should jump at the opportunity to optimize their value.
New York-based Retail Consultant Bob Phibbs, known as The Retail Doctor®, encourages clients to utilize signage as a way to increase brand personality:
“Signs can be so much more than directions, policies, and the like,” he advises. “I saw a great one over the holidays at a store in Las Vegas: ‘Santa – Leave presents, take brother.’ Do you know how many young guys I saw taking pictures of each other in front of that sign? Lots.”
Phibbs attributed the sign’s success to a sense of personality, which engaged customers through humor, intrigue, and entertainment.
By creating these points of experience, goodwill is formed between your brand and a customer. Expressing that personality in engaging and interactive ways fosters a sense that your company is personable and approachable.
Fun and Function
Of course, signage should function first and, whenever possible, entertain second. Striking the balance between personable and practical is key.
To accomplish this balance, “Stores that blur the line between graphics and interior design are the best,” she says. “Use wayfinding signage that is legible but seamlessly integrated. More and more retailers are integrating signage into the environment rather than adding it on as a separate layer.”
All Together Now
So, what does it look like when you effectively combine the vital components of signage that create personality? One great example is the visual environment designed and installed by Riot Creative Imaging in Atlanta for Delia’s Chicken Sausage Stand.
The project included everything from large exterior signs to dimensional graphics, wallpaper, and Color Wave prints for the menu boards. To foster personality, all of these assets were designed in a homespun, handcrafted style, reflective of the restaurant’s artisanal, small-batch sausages.
Even the napkin dispensers had an inspired combination of fun and function: they informed customers about Delia’s catering services and featured flavors, showcasing Delia’s personality.
These are just a few examples of how you can turn typically boring signage into extensions of your brand. These are easy transformations to make, but for customers, these changes could be the difference between forgettable signage and memorable engagement.