Volume 9, Issue 6 - November/December 2007
Field of Vision
Looking for a Sign
Last week I attended a trade show for another industry we cover, the Win-door show in Toronto. I attended the fenestration show for one of AGRR’s sister publications, Door and Window Manufacturer. When I returned to the airport, my co-worker and I were quite thrilled we found our way back to the terminal easily. But, when we arrived in the airport, something was missing: signs.
First, we looked for the Air Canada check-in—and saw it quickly. After waiting through a short line, we arrived at the front, only to find out we were at the London check-in point. (When are there ever different check-in points for different locations? Only in Canada, apparently.)
After a little walk, we found self check-in. It worked well, went quickly and off we went. The only problem was, it didn’t tell us what to do with our checked luggage. So, we went to the customs line, filled out the appropriate forms and got in the customs line, since that made sense—until yet another person told us we first needed to drop off our bags and get labels for them. “Where?” we asked, assuming instructions would have been given to us at self check-in. We were pointed to another check-in desk a little ways away, where we waited in another line to drop off our hefty suitcases.
Afterwards, we hit the lengthy customs line and security lines, which were both well-marked, fortunately. Then, we decided we needed to eat—being that it had been about seven hours since lunch. We walked what felt like a mile with laptops, magazines and an LCD projector in tow, only to find out the restaurant at which we wished to eat—the one on the map—was blocked off. We asked a nice couple standing near the glass doors separating us from the restaurant why we couldn’t get to it, and they replied, “Because that’s Canada. You’d have to go through customs again if you went over there.” It would have been nice had there been a map or a sign to tell us that.
So, what does this all have to do with auto glass? Well, it made me think—businesses likely have the same problem. They need websites, information and signs to lead people to their businesses. If people can’t find you, how are they going to give you their business?
Can your customers find you? If they looked online or in the phone book for you, would your company be accessible? If they set out to find you on the road, do you have a sign or an obvious brand they would see? Or would they get lost trying to find your location?
If you do mobile work, is your vehicle clearly marked, or would you blend in with the rest of the parking lot?
These are all important questions to ask, because in the end, signs are what lead us all.
Fortunately, we also just returned from Las Vegas where signs are aplenty in a city filled with tourists. Please turn to page 38 to read our review of Auto Glass Week™ in Las Vegas.
And, as you finish up your day, please ask yourself, are my signs clear enough?
If you have tips for others on branding and signage, please e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Penny Stacey is the editor of AGRR magazine/glassBYTEs.comTM.