How will my sign help get feet through my door

How will my sign help get feet through my door

Boosting Foot Traffic with SignForce: Crafting Signs that pull in Customers”

SignForce’s years of marketing experience allows us to specialize in creating signs that do more than mark your location – SignForce’s signs are a key element in your marketing strategy, designed to attract customers and increase foot traffic.

Here’s how SignForce crafts signs to ensure they become a magnet for your business:

Visibility and Brand Identity

At SignForce we strive to design signs to fit your location so your signs stand out and speak directly to your prospective clients while taking into account your corporate and brand identity. SignForce combines multiple (captivating) elements of design together with strategic positioning to ensure business is recognized, sometimes even becoming a local landmark which is both visible and memorable.

Clear Messaging by SignForce

SignForce emphasizes the importance of delivering your message with clarity and impact. This is done using various design elements as well as taking into account the positioning and location of your business. At SignForce we understand that not every brand is instantly recognized like Coke or AMEX, and as such, where appropriate, the SignForce approach ensures that your sign communicates what your business offers with the intention of making it instantly clear to potential customers why they should choose you.

Designing Invitations with SignForce

SignForce’s signs are more than information panels – the love and care that SignForce put into making your signa makes your sign into a visible invitation. Over and above the love and care that goes into the production process, SignForce uses appealing aesthetics, including colors and enhancing graphics, to make your sign welcoming, encouraging all who see your sign to step inside and explore what you have to offer.

Brand Consistency with SignForce

With SignForce, consistency across your signage and branding efforts is key. We ensure that every piece of your visual branding aligns, reinforcing your brand’s image and building customer trust and loyalty. Experience has shown that it is easy to neglect consistency in business branding, but the cost is high as when people see your brand and it looks ‘off’ they sub-consciously lose trust in your brand and business, and will then look for alternate suppliers.

Optimal Placement Strategies by SignForce

Location is everything, and SignForce’s expertise extends to advising on the best placement for your signs. We assess your location to ensure maximum visibility and impact in order to direct the flow of potential customers through your door.

Allow SignForce to enhance Your Success

SignForce is dedicated to ensuring your signage is an active participant in your business’s success. SignForce’s focus on standout design, clear messaging, inviting aesthetics, brand consistency, and strategic placement ensures your sign is seen and is effective in bringing customers into your establishment.

With SignForce, your sign becomes an investment as it is a powerful tool for increasing visibility and driving foot traffic, contributing significantly to your business’s growth.

Top of Form

Contact SignForce now on info@signforce.co.za or call +27 (0)11 440 7525 or WhatsApp +27 (0)82 558 6413

Find out more about SignForce by visiting http://www.signforce.co.za

You can also watch some of SignForce’s many video’s at:

https://youtu.be/2uJBSOly6wM?si=q4khxcCA9ocC_oRw

https://youtu.be/FW3arJbUK9U?si=WmuelgkOTp-sLCKE

What should your sign specialists know – the value of signs only vs marketing value

 

What should your sign specialists know – signs only vs marketing value

SignForce’s USP: Merging Sign Craftsmanship and design with Marketing Brilliance”

At SignForce we recognize that the expertise required for exceptional sign design and creation overlaps far into the marketing sphere, showcasing signs as pivotal brand assets rather than mere informational displays.

The combination of formal marketing qualifications and decades of experience in the design and manufacture of signage places SignForce at the forefront of signage design and implementation of effective ‘investment’ signage. SignForce has a deep understanding that for a sign to be effective and considered as an investment, each crafted sign is a direct reflection of the brand it represents within the specific area or context* of the sign, serving as a dynamic marketing tool that enhances brand visibility and customer connection.

* Context and placement of a sign often make a massive impact on both the impact and effectiveness of a sign. The best way to demonstrate this is the VEGAS strip. Everyone knows that the VEGAS strip is synonymous with FLASHING and SCROLLING large neon signs. Imagine how your new sign on the strip would be seen and perceived if your new sign is ‘smaller’ and does not illuminate, never mind it being neon and scrolling. The chances are your sign would become invisible in that context, even though in almost any other context your sign would be considered as MASSIVE and highly visible. This is where the phrase ‘horses for courses’ is appropriate. Regardless of how recognized and how well known your brand, if your brand is not competing at any specific location, your branding (signs) may be a waste of money.

Elevating Signs with SignForce’s Insight

SignForce’s experienced professionals are adept at transforming signs into strategic marketing vehicles. At SignForce we ensure every project undertaken stands out visually while also aligning perfectly with the client’s marketing objectives. This dual focus on aesthetic appeal and marketing potency underscores the unique value SignForce brings to every signage project we participate in, especially when we are involved with the design and installation of your signs.

Brand Identity and SignForce’s Role

Understanding and reinforcing your brand’s identity through signage is the cornerstone of SignForce’s approach. Our SignForce team meticulously crafts signs that echo your brand’s core message and values with the intention of creating a cohesive and impactful brand experience. SignForce’s commitment to this principle elevates our signage solutions, making them an indispensable investment tool in our clients’ marketing arsenals.

Maximizing Impact with SignForce Strategies

SignForce’s expertise goes beyond the limit’s of design and craftsmanship; our expertise encompasses a thorough understanding of marketing dynamics, including customer behavior, color psychology, and also strategic sign placement. At SignForce we leverage this comprehensive knowledge to create signs that attract attention while actively engaging customers, driving brand loyalty and business growth for your business.

SignForce – Where Signage Meets Marketing

At SignForce, we believe in the powerful synergy between exceptional sign making and insightful marketing strategy. SignForce’s holistic approach ensures that every sign we produce is more than simply a testament to high-quality craftsmanship but also a key player in our clients’ marketing strategies.

Through this blend of creativity, innovation, and strategic insight, SignForce continually sets new standards in the signage industry, helping brands shine brighter in an ever more crowded marketplace.

Contact SignForce now on info@signforce.co.za or call +27 (0)11 440 7525 or WhatsApp +27 (0)82 558 6413 to take advantage of SignForce’s experience and to get your brand out there so it benefits from SignForce’s input for greater visibility.

Find out more about SignForce by visiting http://www.signforce.co.za

The 5 steps to make signs visible

The 5 steps to make signs visible

The 5 main factors that make signs visible are color, contrast, size, distance and noise

Color

Color refers to both the color of the TEXT as well as the color of the backing of the sign – and also includes other possible ‘noise’ that can distract one’s eye balls from the main intended message of the sign – generally YOUR BUSINESSES NAME ad / or what your business does.

Contrast

Contrast refers to the difference between the color of the LOGO or TEXT of the sign as well as the color of the backing behind the sign. It is great to see subtle logo’s, for example a black on black logo with the backing being matt and the logo or text being gloss, or the other way around – when looking at paper or anything at close range. The low contrast does not always work as expected when the logo to text need to be expanded from a small logo on paper to a much larger sign – not necessarily even a massive sign.

For signage, the greater the contrast, the more visible the sign tends to be, especially from a distance, with the greatest visibility being black on yellow.

Size

The further away from the sign one wants the viewer to be able to read the sign, the larger the logo and text – and hence the sign – need to be.

See the previous blog on the SignForce blog (https://signforce.co.za/blog/big-must-sign/) which give an indication of how large your text or logo should be to be clearly visible from different distances.

The general rule is that the larger the sign the easier it is to read from a distance. That said, it is also possible for a sign to be too large for the available space, or for the sign to be too large for it to be easy legible from the available distance or for the sign to be spaced so far off a backing that it looks gaudy.

Distance

As stated above, the further away from the sign the viewers will be that one needs to read the sign, the larger the sign needs to be.

This is amplified when a sign is going to be installed at height.

The higher the sign the larger it needs to be as height tends to be a double whammy when it comes to visibility. It is quite simple to understand that the higher the sign the further it is from the viewer, (think of Pythagoras’s theory), the not so simple part is that the same sign at the same distance that looks large always looks smaller when the sign is installed at height. This writer has no explanation for this phenomena.

Noise

Noise or visual pollution or visual distraction all refer to anything that can challenge a viewer’s attention, distracting the viewer’s eye balls from the intended message – ‘polluting’ their attention. Noise can refer to a complex design that distracts from the intended message or it can mean the font is too sophisticated or too artistic to be read at a glance, or a number of other distractions from the intended message.

At SignForce we focus on getting your message across to your intended audience in a way that will add income to your bottom line – in other words making your sign an investment.

Contact SignForce now to get your signs that work. SignForce is available at info@signforce.co.za or you can call +27 (0)11 440 7525 or you can WhatsApp +27 (0)82 558 6413

Find out more about SignForce by visiting http://www.signforce.co.za


The Value of Input from Sign Specialists when Designing Signs: SignForce’s Insight

The Value of Input from Sign Specialists when Designing Signs: SignForce’s Insight

In the intricate process of sign creation, the expertise of a sign specialists stands as a crucial element that significantly impacts the outcome of the entire signage process. At SignForce, we recognize the indispensable value of sign specialists’ input at every stage of the sign making process, starting with the designing of a sign. The insights of the signage specialist ensure not only the aesthetic appeal and technical accuracy of signage but also its effectiveness in conveying the intended message to the target audience.

Bridging Design and Functionality

Sign specialists should possess a deep understanding of how design and material elements including colour, shape, and size influence the visibility, readability, impact and effectiveness of your signage. SignForce’s expertise – including an understanding of marketing, engineering and materials – ensures that your signs are both visually captivating and functionally effective. By harmonizing creative design with practical considerations, sign specialists guarantee that signage serves its primary purpose—communicating with the audience effectively. This differs from signs designed by designers who may focus purely on the aesthetic value of the sign but may not have any clue on the practical implementation that is required to make their beautiful, but not necessarily practical, sign come to life.

Ensuring Compliance and Quality

Navigating the complexities of regulatory compliance is another area where the input of sign specialists is invaluable. While SignForce does not get involved in regulatory compliance, we are fairly well-versed in local bylaws and other regulatory requirements that may impact your signage decision. SignForce’s knowledge helps to safeguard your businesses against potential legal issues and fines.

Customized Solutions for Enhanced Impact

Every business has unique needs and goals for its signage. Sign specialists at SignForce excel in tailoring designs to meet your specific requirements, ensuring that each sign is a perfect fit for your business’s brand identity and marketing objectives. SignForce’s ability to customize solutions enhances the impact of signage, making it a powerful tool for brand visibility and customer engagement.

Innovative Techniques for Lasting Impressions

The signage industry is continually evolving, with new materials, technologies, and techniques constantly emerging. SignForce is at the forefront of this innovation, bringing the latest trends and advancements to the design process. SignForce’s input allows businesses to benefit from signs that are not only modern and appealing but also durable and cost-effective.

The SignForce Advantage

At SignForce, our team of sign specialists is dedicated to providing comprehensive consultancy and design services that bring your vision to life. We understand that a sign is more than just a piece of advertising; it’s a critical component of your brand’s identity and public perception. That’s why SignForce emphasize the importance of professional input in every project we undertake, ensuring that every sign we design, manufacture, and install is a testament to our commitment to excellence, innovation, and customer satisfaction.

The value of input from sign specialists when designing signs cannot be overstated. It is the cornerstone of creating effective, compliant, and impactful signage that truly represents a business’s brand and communicates its message clearly. At SignForce, we pride ourselves on our team’s expertise and dedication to excellence, which ensures that our clients receive more than just signs, rather they receive strategic business assets. In an industry where the difference between ordinary and extraordinary lies in the details, the specialized knowledge and insight of sign specialists make all the difference.

Contact SignForce now on info@signforce.co.za or call +27 (0)11 440 7525 or WhatsApp +27 (0)82 558 6413

Find out more about SignForce by visiting http://www.signforce.co.za

 

SignForce belief in the Value of Mentoring and Training

A SignForce Insight into the Value of Mentoring in the Signage Industry

At SignForce, our belief in the transformative power of mentoring within the signage industry is unwavering. For SignForce, mentoring transcends mere knowledge transfer – it’s about nurturing growth, fostering innovation, and cultivating a supportive community with the ultimate objective being that is or when the current management leave or die, all team members have the necessary skill and training to take over the running of the business – in other words, sustainability – or for all team members to be in a position AT ANY TIME to go on their own and open their own signage business in order to compete with SignForce and take care of their respective families.

With a legacy spanning over two decades, SignForce has seamlessly integrated mentoring into the fabric of our operations, underpinning our sustained success and prominence in the market, and we believe is one of the reasons we have a loyal team with all of whom have been in long service with SignForce.

Empowering Innovation and Creativity at SignForce

Mentoring at SignForce extends far beyond the fundamentals of sign design and installation. Mentoring at SignForce represents a commitment to inspire our team members to exceed the conventional boundaries of creativity and technical prowess, instilling a sense of LETS TRY as this is the only way we could innovate and come up with possible method changing prospects. Leveraging SignForce’s rich reservoir of knowledge, we encourage industry novices to devise innovative solutions, ensuring every project not only mirrors our client’s aspirations but also showcases the abilities of our team members – past and current.

Cultivating a Cohesive Professional Network with SignForce

The essence of mentoring and training at SignForce is fundamental to our role of fostering a closely-knit network. At SignForce we champion the potency of caring and robust relationships – spanning all team members, both mentors and mentees, and our esteemed clients. These relationships are essential in bolstering collaboration, equipping SignForce to navigate complex projects with unparalleled confidence and dexterity – both essential to survive in the South African and signage market in general.

Upholding Excellence and Uniformity at SignForce

Excellence and consistency are the cornerstones of SignForce’s established reputation. SignForce’s dedication to mentoring and consistent training is at the foundation in cascading SignForce’s core values across generations of signage makers and users within our ranks. This unwavering dedication upholds SignForce’s high standards and also magnifies our commitment to delivering the most extraordinary customer experiences we can. Through mentoring and constant training SignForce ensures that every sign we create, from its initial concept to the final installation, serves as a testament to unmatched quality, embodying SignForce’s legacy of excellence. At SignForce we take pride of our work as there are very few experiences that in-still pride like the feeling that comes from driving past a sign that has withstood and successfully passed the test of time.

The Indelible Impact of Mentoring at SignForce

In essence, the significance of mentoring and training is core to SignForce’s ethos and values. Mentoring and training are a critical component of SignForce’s blueprint for success, nurturing a culture of growth, innovation, our unwavering sense of unity and our drive to ensure sustainability.

When you are looking to have your brand stand out, contact SignForce immediately on info@signforce.co.za or call +27 (0)11 440 7525 or WhatsApp +27 (0)82 558 6413

Find out more about SignForce by visiting http://www.signforce.co.za

Why is My Sign So Expensive?

Printed Sandblast Effect Vinyl

Impressive Printed Sandblast Entrance Sign

The Value Behind Your SignForce Investment

When evaluating the cost of a sign, it’s natural to wonder about the pricing, and even if a sign is an essential business assets. At SignForce, we’re committed to revealing the true value behind every sign we create. More than a mere sign, it represents your brand, serving as a long-term investment in your business’s visibility and reputation.

Quality Materials: The Foundation of Excellence

The durability and impact of a sign depend on the quality of materials used. At SignForce we pride ourselves on selecting materials not just for their appearance but for their longevity and resilience. From weather-resistant materials to vibrant, fade-resistant original Roland inks, and energy-efficient LED lighting, our choices ensure your sign withstands the elements, even in the extreme South African sun. This focus on high-quality materials often leads to a higher upfront cost but results in fewer replacements and repairs, saving money over time, making the up front investment a better, more cost effective long term investment.

Custom Design: Tailored to Your Unique Brand

Your business’s unique identity deserves to be reflected in your signage. Custom design is a significant factor in the cost of your sign. SignForce’s team collaborates with you to craft a sign that encapsulates your brand and also distinguishes your sign in the market. This process, involving meticulous planning, creative design, and precise execution, demands time and expertise, which we at SignForce believe we are worth being compensated for.

Skilled Craftsmanship: The Essence of Your Sign

Each SignForce sign is a product of skilled craftsmanship. Our artisans, experienced in their craft, blend traditional skills with modern techniques to create visually compelling and robust signs that make your BRAND stand out and draw potential clients to your business. This human touch in sign-making ensures each sign embodies quality and character, making it a symbol of your brand’s identity.

Long-Term Value: An Investment in Your Business

A sign from SignForce is an investment in your business’s future. Beyond the initial cost, a well-crafted sign draws customers, enhances your brand identity, and signals your commitment to style and quality. The long-term benefits in brand visibility and customer engagement far outweigh the cost, especially compared to standard signs that do not elevate your brand and are not likely to last long.

Conclusion: A Partnership in Your Brand’s Success

At SignForce, we view our role as your partner in success. We focus on delivering signs that add value both aesthetically and also as effective business growth tools as your brand becomes recognized. Choosing SignForce means investing in a quality, durable, custom sign that supports your business for years to come.

Your sign often creates the first impression of your business, and with SignForce, it’s an enduring one. SignForce ensure your sign investment enhances brand recognition and customer engagement, affirming the lasting impact of your choice.

Contact SignForce now on info@signforce.co.za or call +27 (0)11 440 7525 or WhatsApp +27 (0)82 558 6413

Find out more about SignForce by visiting http://www.signforce.co.za

Choosing a signage supplier

Free Standing Signs that work

Choosing a signage supplier

How Can SignForce Help You With Signage?

Navigating the world of signage can be challenging, but at SignForce, we’re here to guide you through every step. Whether you’re a new business looking to make a bold first impression or an established brand aiming to refresh your image, understanding how signage can help is crucial. In this blog post, we’ll explore how SignForce assists you in creating impactful signage that aligns with your business goals and needs.

Understanding Your Vision

The first step in any signage journey is understanding your vision.

What message do you want to convey?

Who is your target audience?

How do you want your brand to be perceived?

What do you want YOUR sign to achieve?

At SignForce, we begin by listening.

Our team of experts will discuss your objectives, brand identity, and design preferences to ensure your signage aligns perfectly with your business ethos and your desired outcomes.

Design and Customization

At SignForce, we believe that every sign sign investment mus be a piece of art that reflects your brand’s unique identity. Our design process is collaborative and iterative. With state-of-the-art design tools and a keen eye for aesthetics, we create custom signage that makes your brand stand out. Whether it’s a vibrant storefront sign, an electronic billboard, an elegant office plaque, or dynamic vehicle branding, we tailor every aspect of your visual communication to your specific requirements.

Quality Materials and Craftsmanship

The longevity and impact of your sign heavily depend on craftsmanship and the materials used. At SignForce, we use only high-quality materials that ensure durability so your sign will have a long life together with visual appeal. Our skilled craftsmen combine traditional techniques with modern technology to produce signs that are not stunning and also withstand the test of time.

Compliance and Installation

Navigating the regulations around signage can be complex. SignForce takes the hassle out of this process. We ensure that all our signs comply with local zoning laws and regulations. Our installation team is highly experienced, ensuring that your sign is safely and strategically placed for maximum visibility and impact.

Ongoing Support and Maintenance

Our relationship with you doesn’t end once your sign is installed. SignForce offers ongoing support and maintenance to ensure your signage continues to shine brightly. Whether it’s a simple clean-up or more complex repairs, we are just a call away.

Why Choose SignForce?

Expertise and Experience: With over two decades in the business linked with a deep understanding of marketing, we understand the nuances of effective signage.

Custom Solutions: SignForce provide advice and tailored solutions that reflect your brand’s unique story.

Quality Assurance: High-quality materials and craftsmanship guarantee a lasting impression.

End-to-End Service: From conception to installation and maintenance, we handle it all making your experience hassle free.

Your sign is often the first point of contact with your physical audience, making your signage a crucial element of your marketing strategy. At SignForce, we do more than just create signs; we craft powerful communication tools that elevate your brand. Let SignForce help you make a statement that resonates with your audience and stands the test of time. Reach out to us today, and let’s bring your vision to life!


If you or your business are in the market for signage – regardless of the size of the sign and the size of the job – SignForce is available to assist.

Contact SignForce now on info@signforce.co.za or call +27 (0)11 440 7525 or WhatsaApp +27 (0)82 558 6413

Find out more about SignForce by visiting http://www.signforce.co.za

SignForce’s reputation

 

SignForce

What you see is what you get with SignForce

How SignForce built our Reputation

In the competitive world of signage, having a stellar reputation isn’t just beneficial—it’s essential. At SignForce we have always been – and are – aware that our reputation is the collective perception of our business, formed by the quality our work, customer service, and the overall experience that we at SignForce provide, remembering that we are ALWAYS dealing with PEOPLE. SignForce’s reputation is the intangible yet powerful force that sets SignForce apart in a market flooded with choices.

Understanding Reputation: At SignForce we have built our reputation on providing ADVICE on SIGNAGE and MARKETING, with our focus being on ensuring that ANY money spent on signage MUST BE AN INVESTMENT. At its core, SignForce’s reputation is about being acknowledged for excellence, reliability, and our ability to positively influence our clients’ businesses – we get the feet through your door!

SignForce’s reputation has been built through consistent delivery of high-quality signs, innovative design solutions, and exceptional customer experiences over more than two decades under the current management. We would love to say we don’t make mistakes but that would be a lie. What we can say with 100% honesty and great pride is that our ‘mess up’ rate is significantly less than 4.3% and in all our years we have only had three jobs that we had to walk away from because we could not make good.

SignForce’s strong reputation means that when our existing client’s need signage services, SignForce is the first sign business that comes to mind.

Building a Reputable Status: Achieving SignForce’s reputable status has been and still is a journey involving continuous improvement and dedication. Building and maintaining SignForce’s reputation requires a keen focus on excellence in every aspect of our signage business – be it design, material quality, or customer service. Consistency is crucial – SignForce want our clients to know they can rely on us for top-notch work every time.

Equally important is how we at SignForce make our clients feel – appreciated, understood, valued, and SATISFIED. At SignForce we believe that positive experiences lead to positive word-of-mouth, which is invaluable in helping to build our reputation.

Long term Perspective: At SignForce we adopt a LONG TERM approach, unlike Keynesian theory in which it is stated that in the long term we are all dead so nothing matters.

At SignForce we believe out long term view is vital in building and sustaining our reputation – as well as the reputation of our customers – or as we see them, our business partners.

This long term perspective emphasizes consistent quality and engagement over time, rather than quick, short-term gains. For SignForce this means investing in quality materials, innovative design capabilities, a strong, experienced team and building strong, lasting relationships with our clients. At SignForce our goal is to create a cycle where quality work leads to customer satisfaction, which in turn drives our customers growth and hence greater demand and further business opportunities for SignForce as well.

Practical steps to choosing a signage partner:

Any potential buyer of signage is advised to follow the following steps in order to give them the best chance of having a successful, smooth experience when ordering their signs.

Where possible the buyer should evaluate the current standing of your potential signage partner – possibly talking to existing current clients, with the intention to get an understanding of where the your potential signage supplier stands in terms of reputation, ability to fulfil your job and meet your signage requirements. It may also be helpful to gather feedback and check reviews.

In order to ensure a SUCCESSFUL signage process it is imperative that the buyer is able to DEFINE your requirements – clearly define how you want your business to be perceived and define what, to you and your business, would be define as a SUCCESSFUL implementation of signage. Having clearly defined expectations is probably the safest way to confirm that your chosen signage supplier can and will deliver on and to your requirements.

One question you can ask is do the values and attributes of the proposed signage supplier align with our brand.

If you or your business are in the market for signage – regardless of the size of the sign and the size of the job – SignForce is available to assist.

Contact SignForce now on info@signforce.co.za or call +27 (0)11 440 7525 or WhatsaApp +27 (0)82 558 6413

Find out more about SignForce by visiting http://www.signforce.co.za

Where does SIGNAGE fit into your business

Where does SIGNAGE fit into your business

Today I was reminded that Sales, Marketing as Branding are NOT all the same tasks, and while they may all have the same objective – improved turnover – they are not necessarily achieved by performing the same or similar tasks.

According to Bing.com Branding, marketing and sales are different but related aspects of a business. Branding is all about creating an image or identity for a product or company. Branding and marketing both use strategies to reach their goals for the business, while marketing focuses on boosting sales branding focuses on increasing the organizations recognition and loyalty.

Marketing is about uncovering and connecting with audiences most likely to benefit from any long-term ‘promises’ that a business makes, especially by using branding..

Sales is the ultimate objective of all branding and marketing, culminating in an exchange of value between the buyer and the seller.

When assessing signage in relation to branding, marketing and sales, one should figure where signage should fit in and what the sign should deliver in order to be considered successful.

Signage such as store name, vehicle branding, isle markers and product identifiers can all be considered part of the BRANDING mix. This is because these type of signs can relay a specific message at the same time as creating consistent BRAND awareness while keeping the BRAND front of mind.

Signage can be used as part of the MARKETING mix by reminding the viewer of the promise that the branding is committing to.

Signage at point of sales can be in the form of visually impactful bobbers or standardizing the signage of the store, constantly reminding the person of where they are and how they got there.

If you or your business are in the market for signage, SignForce has decades of experience and is available to assist.

Contact SignForce not on info@signforce.co.za

What is a CLIENT or CUSTOMER – and when is a ‘client’ neither a client nor a customer?

Printed Sandblast Effect Vinyl

Impressive Printed Sandblast Entrance Sign

What is a CLIENT or CUSTOMER – and when is a ‘client’ neither a client nor a customer?

As one walks into a Stew Leonads physical stores (https://www.stewleonards.com/) there is a large rock at the entrance which states the store’s policy. It reads, RULE 1: The CUSTOMER is ALWAYS RIGHT. Rule 2. If the customer is ever wrong read RULE 1.

This is an amazing policy and a great focus on superb customer service, especially for the retail market. (For those of you who have never been to the store it an EXPERIENCE of note).

But is the saying true and valid for businesses that are not retail based? I suppose the truest answer is YES and NO. Yes, as it is a great target for customer service, and NO because since customers are also human, there are times when they too will NOT be right.

As a designer, manufacturer and installer of bespoke, customized signage, SignForce is NOT a retail distributor, and while we strive to follow the policy of Stew Leonards, there are times when we have to question if the policy that seems to work so well for the retail distributor can work equally well for a manufacturer that also falls into the category of service provider of signage.

A simple Google search (http://www.google.com) of the word CUSTOMER says the following:

customer, noun, a person who buys goods or services from a shop or business.

On the other hand Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Customer) defines a customer as:

In sales, commerce and economics, a customer is the recipient of a good, service, product or an idea, obtained from a seller, vendor or supplier via a financial transaction or an exchange for money or some other valuable consideration.

In this writers opinion the Wikipedia is the better definition as it does not limit a customer to an INDIVIDUAL – the vast majority of customers, especially in SignForce’s business of supplying signage of all sorts, are businesses and corporates or institutions, NOT individuals.

What BOTH definition’s imply – or flat out explicitly state – is that a customer enters into a FINANCIAL TRANSACTION – meaning the customer receives something of value to said customer from the supplier who will receive FINANCIAL GAIN (read that as MONEY) for the goods supplied, so when a supposed customer does not pay for the goods, are they still a customer, or rather a liability and an expense?

I cannot speak for the world outside South Africa – but at the time of writing South Africa is a failed state (although many ill informed politicians and their cronies and ilk will argue otherwise) run by a poorly organized mafia (with no respect) known as the anc.

The once disciplined, moral and effective freedom fighters – or terrorists depending on one’s position (remember they are the two sides of the same coin) – did well to displace the apartheid government and have since failed dismally to show any morals or back bone or integrity or will or ability to build a nation – rant over.

The point being made is as a failed and further failing state – South Africa under the anc is doing all it can to follow the economic downfall of Zimbabwe and Venezuela, meaning doing business in South Africa is becoming increasingly difficult and costs of materials in South Africa, even when converted at US$ 1 to R20, are still prohibitive, making it extremely difficult for South African businesses to compete in the international market.

In 2023 many signage products can be acquired from China (no surprise) or America or Europe or the middle east (all big surprise) at lower cost than the can be made in South Africa .

As a South African based business this is scary as it makes a country, even with an atrocious exchange rate less competitive and will most likely only lead to greater job losses and more imports. A recipe for continued economic destruction.

When one is operating in such an environment – dare one say a war zone – this is sadly true as there are currently more violent deaths per day in South Africa (as a result of crime) than there are in most war zones in the world. This writer is not a statistician so please feel free to fact check my comments – one needs to ensure that ALL work time is compensated for, which once again comes back to wolves disguised as customers who are more than happy to prey on businesses that believe that turnover is more important than profit.

Part and parcel of the writers experience of of the signage industry over more than two decades is for people to ask for the world – based on an idea – and then over time refine the ideas until they come to a place where they are happy with what they see – both in vision and in associated cost.

As a signage supplier the typical South African attitude of I can do it myself, better and cheaper, comes at a huge cost in time (and often money). This includes prospects who are not yet customers requesting multiple ‘minor’ changes in design, revision in quote, etc., as even every ‘minor’ change requires a rework that can take hours. As such a quote that may take three to five changes can take longer to produce than the production of the signage, and this is all expected to be done at the signage suppliers cost.

So now assume there have been three changes to a quote and the graphic, and the client then decides that either they do not have the budget or they shop around using your intellectual property (IP) to get ‘competitive quotes’ – (remember they have not paid for your time that you are entitled to charge for) this is a topic of an entire book, not only a blog, and surprise surprise, they can get it CHEAPER.

When this occurs is the CUSTOMER or CLIENT still a customer or client as they are not paying for any of the sign suppliers input – both time and intellectual property (IP) – or are they an expense and liability that needs to be dropped for good – or in the thinking of this writer, charged for time if ever they approach the supplier again with the carrot (or promise) of potential future business?

Another question is at what point does the signage supplier disengage with ‘customers’ with all commitments of the supplier falling away. If a customer is with-holding final payment (we assume no business will be prepared to work without receiving an up front deposit) because some possible ‘snags’ are not being addressed, is it to be assumed that the signage supplier MUST make good and then fight on to get payment or should the client pay in full to fulfil their part of the financial transaction and then hope the supplier will make good?

Why is it that the often smallest cog in the value chain is expected to cover ALL the costs of prospect’s multiple mind changes and revisions, and is expected to not charge for their IP and time?

Sometime people we consider to be customers need to be fired so we can focus on PAYING customers who do not expect suppliers to work for free.

This writer is asking anyone WHO believes they may have answers to the various questions and issues to please contact the writer who will gladly take anyone who can give practical ideas for a cup of coffee in order to generate new ideas on how an industry which is seen so poorly so as to be on a par with second hand car sales, can educate clients sufficiently for them to get a grasp of value that they receive from their professionally made business signage.

SignForce is a full service signage supplier

If you are in the market for signage that will get feet into your business contact SignForce now on info@signforce.co.za or call +27 (0)11 440 7525 or WhatsApp +27 (0)82 558 6413

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