The Online Magazine For The Sign Trade
e-NewsLetter Volume 11 Issue 1
Monday January 4, 2010

In this issue:


Relationships 101

    "I think it all comes down to relationships - how I treat my wife, how I treat my kids, how I treat the guys at the grocery store, all aspects of every day, what I'm involved in."
      --- Michael W. Smith

Sales professionals know that one of the sure-fire ways to increase sales is to increase relationships. Relationship building is one of the most rewarding aspects of running a business. The rewards come in many forms including developing life-long friendships.

People buy from people they like and who they feel comfortable with. Building relationships affords you an opportunity to plant the seeds of growth in order for your business to survive and thrive in an increasingly competitive environment.

    "Business is not just doing deals; business is having great products, doing great engineering, and providing tremendous service to customers. Finally, business is a cobweb of human relationships."
      --- Ross Perot

Gaining clients' confidence and trust in you and your company is key to developing good business relationships. Too often sales people or other company representatives go into meetings like 'gangbusters' deluging clients (or potential clients) with too much information and barely drawing breath.

Relationship building is all about the fact that at the gut level, it is you that they buy. Clearly, they are interested in what your company has to offer or you wouldn't be having meetings with them in the first place, but for the duration of those meetings you are the company.

This means that it's less about your product and a whole lot more about how you connect and engage with your client. You need to have the skills to engender trust, understand your client's needs and get under the skin of what is going on their company.

    "Trust men and they will be true to you; treat them greatly and they will show themselves great."
      --- Ralph Waldo Emerson

The value of networking is probably understood by most business people, but the process used in some networking groups actually stifles the development of relationships. Speed networking, like speed dating is starting to spring up in business communities around the country. While it serves its purpose for introductions (if you can do it quickly), it doesn't provide an environment for building solid business relationships.

Begin relationship building by starting with your inner circle. That is, your vendors, suppliers, and anyone that provides support in some way for your business. Then, branch out from there. Call on regular customers to have coffee, lunch, or take golfing. No hidden agenda, just be yourself and listen, listen, listen. Learn the needs of your customers. Find out what hurts them and what helps them.

    "In any restaurant of this caliber, the chefs are in the same position, building relationships."
      --- Thomas Keller

It takes time to build relationships, but it is well worth the effort to clear some calendar dates and make the time. Sign shop owners, suppliers, and manufacturers that we've met over ten years ago remain good friends of ours, as well as customers and people that we can call on for insight and advice and they feel the same way about us. It didn't start out with us trying to find out what we can get out of these folks (nor what they could get out of us), but how we can help each other.

    "Cherish your human connections - your relationships with friends and family."
      --- Barbara Bush

People enjoy doing business with people they know, like, and trust. This may seem an elementary concept, but it is often lost in daily business. Successful business relationships do not develop overnight. They require consistent nurturing over a period of time, typically at least one year. This fresh beginning of 2010 is the perfect time to expand your business contacts and build new friendships.

Advertiser - The International Sign Association’s International Sign Expo

See How One Show Can Make You Look!

The International Sign Association's International
Sign Expo returns to Orlando, Florida, April 7-10,
2010, with the latest sign trends and technologies
driving the growth of the visual communications

There's plenty to boost your bottom line at the largest sign show in the world:

  • Eye-catching exhibits, including ISA's New Product Showcase and the Green Product Showcase;
  • Expert education, presenting 60 ISA International Sign Academy sessions; and
  • Exciting special events, featuring a keynote address from Roger Shultz of NBC's The Biggest Loser.
Find it all at ISA International Sign Expo 2010.

Education and networking events: April 7-10
Trade show floor open: April 8-10

Register and book housing today!

For more information, contact ISA at (703) 836-4012 or

Feature Articles

Positioning Graphics for Successful Installation
By Rob Ivers

Excerpt from PDAA Vinyl Installation Proficiency Guide
Read the article...

The Care and Feeding of Digital Displays
By Louis M. Brill

As message formats evolve into more disparate media platforms including electronic billboards, LCD displays, cell phones and computers, so must the content conform to each platform.
Read the article...

Looking for an article or trying to find an old one? Check out the article archive:
     View the archive now

Advertiser - Epson Stylus® Pro GS6000 solvent printer does it all!
Epson Stylus® Pro GS6000 solvent printer does it all!

The Epson Stylus® Pro GS6000 is ideal for printing everything from indoor/outdoor signage and tradeshow graphics to vehicle wraps, posters and fine art. Capable of printing up to 64" wide on virtually any solvent media, it comes fully loaded including a production-based RIP by ColorBurst®. Learn more.

Funny Signs

As seen in Greenville, SC:

    "Drive Slow, See Our City. Drive Fast, See Our Judge"

Bethel Assembly of God Church Sign:

    "Prayer Is The Ultimate Wireless Connection!"

As seen in Quesnel, British Columbia, Canada:

    "All of those who hate speeding tickets, raise your right foot"

We know those funny signs are out there. Take a moment and send them in to us and we'll share them with the world. Send all hysterical observations to:

Product Showcases

Hem Your Printed Banners Fast and With Ease using the Banner Cyclone!
The Banner Cyclone installs double-sided banner tape into the hems fast, easily and automatically. You can now gain control over jobs in-house, do a great job for your customer and save money! The Cyclone will hem your banners consistently, neatly and in a perfectly straight line every time. See a video demo at, click above. Now on sale for a limited time for only $3695. Come get your hem on!
Read on...

Laser Etched Sign, Edge Lit with LEDs
1/2'' Cast Acrylic Laser Etched with Custom graphics,and edge lit with LEDs
Read on...

Wide Format Laminators and Specialty Films from
Laminator.Com features a large selection of Wide Format Laminators, Cold and Liquid Laminators plus Specialty Laminating Films. users receive additional discounts up to 10% off of our already low prices. Order your Laminator and/or Specialty Laminating Films from today!
Read on...

Custom sign letters / metal letters and logos fast from Woodland Manufacturing Inc.
Woodland Manufacturing Inc. now offers sign industry quoted prices on custom cut sign letters including metal letters, acrylic letters, wood letters, stencil letters and much more. Fast turn around time of 5-15 business days.
Read on...

EngraveLab, The Professional Engraver's Choice
Just released, Engravelab V8! More power, less cost for your rotary and laser engraving software. With more installed users than any other engraving software out there, EngraveLab has not only added a whole set of new, easy to use features but also increased it’s production speed by a factor of 2 with new, ultra-efficient fill routines. GET JOBS DONE FASTER!
Read on...

Advertise a product showcase monthly for $100 or an entire year for just $1000. Get with the program and see what you've been missing!
Call or email for more details: 888-350-3357 ext. 201 or

Sign Industry News

Sign Industry Press Releases
What the heck is happening in our industry? Find out here...
Go Now --->

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The Advertisers That Make Possible

Visit our friends and advertisiers that support this publication:

  Advance Corp, Braille-Tac™ Div.:
  CADlink Technology:
  Clarke Systems:
  Cyrious Software:
  Estimate Software:
  International Sign Association (ISA):
  Saw Trax Mfg, Inc.:
  SignPro Systems:
  United States Sign Council (USSC):
  Watchfire Signs- LED:
  Woodland-Sign Letters/Metal Letters:

We want your feedback! Let us know what we can do to serve you better. Send us your comments to us at: or give us a call at 407-656-5892

- Wishing you much success,

  Sean Scott
  Managing Editor

If your company wishes to sponsor this newsletter, please contact Sean Scott at:
or call 888-350-3357 xt 201 to learn more about this and other great advertising opportunities within

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