Signtronix is a California-based sign manufacturer that creates signs for small independent businesses nationwide. From 1996 through 2011, it asked its customers (retailers) to ask their first-time customers (shoppers) how they first found out about their store. Over this 14-year period, 46% of these 13,040 first-time patrons said they’d heard about the retailer because of its on-premise sign. Other possible responses were “word of mouth,” (37%) and “Yellow Pages,” “newspaper,” “radio” and “television,” all at less than 10%. Here were some of the initial verbatim comments from new sign owners (as reported in the June 1998 issue of Signs of the Times magazine):
• From a Lebanon, IL cleaners: “We have added 20 new customers who didn’t know we were here.”
• From a Cedar Springs, MI picture framer: “Our business has increased 30-40% because of the sign.”
• From a Santee, SC BBQ restaurant: “In the first week of the sign being hung up, our business increased by at least 60-70%.”
• From a Bradley, IL comic-book store: “Ninety per cent of the new customers came in because the sign attracted their attention.”
• From a Cookeville, TN tattoo shop: “No more than 10 minutes after putting up the new sign, two customers pulled in.”
• From a Clover, SC flower shop, three weeks after getting a new sign: “I have gotten about 30 new customers.”
• A San Fernando, CA car dealer said sales increased by $6,000 net per week, so the sign paid for itself in less than a month. He decreased his other advertising from $16,000 to $12,000 per month.