A sign’s message is its most important element—hands down.
Some say it IS the sign.
Everything else about the sign—its design, its color, its size—just supports the message.
So you have to get the message right if you want your sign to do its job.
Message must communicate
A message needs to communicate with its intended audience to be effective. It also needs to pique interest, create a promise, and initiate a relationship.
The right message can help you stand out in the crowd. And when you’re competing with all the other “noise” in people’s lives, standing out is critical
Messaging is an essential part of a three-legged stool that makes up branding. Branding is conveyed visually, verbally, and experientially
Make no mistake, though. Creating an effective message can be challenging—even for a good writer. Messaging is often the hardest part of a sign to get right
Unfortunately, many companies like to mimic their competition or speak inconsistently. Neither works—especially in real estate where integrity is everything
Here are three tips to consider when creating a message
- Lead with benefit
Do you talk about what you sell, provide, offer, or do in your marketing messages? Do you try to dazzle with features or services? People don’t care about you. What you do or how you do it doesn’t matter. They care about what’s in it for them
So lead with benefits. Make the reader the focus of your message—not you. And create a vision for what things will be like with your product or service in their future
- Walk the talk
Signs make promises. So do all marketing communications vehicles. Be sure to deliver on those promises. Or, as some marketing gurus say, “Don’t write a brand check you can’t cash.
Back up benefits with proof points. And clearly state your differentiators. You want people to know you’re more than empty marketing promises
- Be human
Make sure your message sounds like human speak—not meaningless marketing jargon. Make sure also your message speaks directly to whoever is reading the sign or other marketing vehicle
Give it some “personality.” Formal and conservative? Informal and progressive? Whatever you think works for your audience
An effective message is at the heart of your sign. Do create an effective message focus on reader benefits, walk the talk, and speak human—not gobbledygook. Do all that and your message—and sign—will make an impact.