Do people still read banners, signs and posters in the online age?

Tokyo at night

Yes is the short answer. But we’re Banner Printing Android, so we would say that wouldn’t we?

And it is tempting to feel that the digital realm has completely taken over. Consider how hard it is to walk down a street without almost colliding with someone staring at a phone rather than looking where they’re going.

On the other hand, consider how hard it is to walk down a street without encountering a sign, banner or poster. They work, not least because they can offer instant gratification. If the sign promoting fish and chips makes you hungry, the shop is right there.

The best evidence that signs and banners still work is that hard-nosed business people continue to pay us (and one or two other inferior companies) good money for them. Apparently even teenagers occasionally lift their eyes from Snapchat and take in their actual surroundings.

Extreme irony alert

Ironic sign

Although banners (especially ours) are eye-catching and effective, they have one potential drawback. Permanence. If you make a mistake, everyone is going to see it and keep seeing it.

The banner pictured here is a case in point. The Chepstow people made the mistake of celebrating their town’s award of a plastic-free accolade with a banner made of…erm…plastic. Ridicule followed. They attempted to justify the obvious howler by saying that it was single use plastic they were against, and the banner was the long-lasting, reusable, environmentally friendly kind. But the digital age is also the binary age; everything is either brilliant or terrible. So naturally that attempt at a subtle, nuanced argument was dismissed out of hand.

Spelling is telling

Shoplifting Sign

In a similar way, a misspelt or badly worded sign or banner is going to be seen by a lot of people.

If you use the “greengrocer’s apostrophe” (banana’s) or get your words mixed up, your business is at risk of looking foolish, rather than irresistible.

The moral of this story is simple: put your trust in professionals who are sure to help you get it right and avoid the obvious pitfalls. Preferably us.