Branding through ADA Signage

The Role of Signage in Branding

Signage is an important part of an organization’s branding strategy. Branding encompasses much more than color schemes and logos. But, these elements can help keep an organization top of mind. It explains why companies aim for consistency by adding these elements to all their materials.

A colorful, well-designed sign can make a good first impression on new visitors and customers. This is why sign shop owners need to do their part for clients in the market for signage.

But, it’s one thing to design and manufacture a batch of banners or counter signs for your client. It’s another when a client submits a request for ADA-compliant signage…

The Truth About ADA Sign Customization

A common misconception is that ADA-compliant signage must be plain and nondescript. It’s true that public facilities need to have signs in place that meet ADA rules and regulations. Yet, business owners have the opportunity to be more creative with their signage than they may think. By outsourcing a sign order to a reputable third party, sign shop owners can customize each client’s signage in the following ways:

  • Shape
  • Size
  • Color
  • Design
  • Material
  • Graphics

In partnering with a third-party sign manufacturer that specializes in ADA signage, sign shop owners can provide their clients with signs that are as aesthetically pleasing as any other display they have.

More than that, an experienced team will be able to help build or improve branding through signage. And that includes signage that needs to follow ADA compliance guidelines.

Incorporating Branding Elements into ADA Signage

As mentioned above, ADA signage doesn’t need to be dull. And it doesn’t need to clash with a business’ existing décor. Since this is one of the primary concerns clients have about ADA signage, it’s worth bringing up again.

Though it’s not uncommon for buildings to have blue restroom signs with white Braille text and images, these colors aren’t required under ADA guidelines. In fact, as long as there is a contrast ratio of 70% between the touchable lettering and background, sign buyers can select virtually any shade they want for their signs.

This means there is ample opportunity to build a cohesive brand image throughout a client’s facility by creating signage with fonts, colors, graphics, logos, and other elements similar to those in the client’s existing advertising materials.

Elements to Consider When Branding through ADA Signage

  • Shape- If a client is ahead of the times, and their facility features very modern or even futuristic décor, their ADA signage should reflect that. In designing your client’s signage, recommend circular or triangular displays that will carry on that theme even when visitors are looking for a particular room or browsing a directory. Or, if there’s a more unique shape they use for their logo, consider applying that figure to their displays to further drive home their branding through signage.
  • Size- When a client projects an image of a larger-than-life company, they’ll likely want their signage to follow suit. ADA signs themselves have no restrictions when it comes to size (though required text size will increase as the sign does). So, you can make sure your client receives the appropriate proportions to complement their branding through signage.
  • Color- As stated above, there’s actually a fair amount of flexibility when it comes to ADA signage color. This makes branding through signage a simple task. If there’s a particular color scheme your client uses throughout their facility and in all of their advertising materials, chances are the same can be applied to their ADA signage. And if you opt to outsource to a third party that has an advanced paint mixing system on-site, you’ll be able to match the shades perfectly.
  • Design- If a client frequently uses a particular design in posters, flyers, and other displays, you can work to apply those same features to their ADA signage. As long as the necessary text is presented in a way that meets ADA compliance (e.g., sans serif font) and won’t cause confusion, there are no other restrictions as far as nonessential text. Other symbols, shapes, lines, etc., can be added as well, provided they don’t interfere with the ADA-required elements.
  • Material- The type of material used for your client’s order can also play a role in branding through signage. By outsourcing the order to a sign manufacturer that works with a variety of materials, you can ensure that even the material fits your client’s brand image. For example, if your client presents an image of beauty and luxury, you could have their ADA signage made in Corian—a material that mimics the grains found in polished stone.
  • Graphics- Some signs (e.g., those indicating phones, restrooms, no smoking) require pictograms, but most don’t. This means you can help your client reinforce their brand by adding graphics that visitors and customers are familiar with. The addition of logos is a popular choice for educational institutions, as it allows them to show off their school spirit. Health care facilities can also keep their brand top of mind by adding their logo to office signs, restroom signs, directories, and more.

Public facilities that need ADA-compliant signs have a chance to improve their branding through signage. Sign shop owners who are hired to complete such orders but lack the necessary equipment should take advantage of this opportunity by partnering with a reputable ADA sign manufacturer. That way, the client can receive the signs they need to remain compliant without sacrificing aesthetics or the overall brand image they’ve worked so hard to build.

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"Erie Custom Signs rocks! The signs they made for me look absolutely fabulous! I’m so grateful for their patience and flexibility during the design phase, and the quick turnaround to get my order here in time for the final inspection. They have been great to work with, and I hope to do so again in the near future." Dawn Gilman, Crystal Lake Engraving
"Erie Custom Signs did an awesome job. Thanks to Mike and the team for such prompt service. They’re now my go-to for ADA signage." Greg Haskell, Hwy 35 Signs
"The Erie team is always expedient in their responses, and they continually meet our extremely tight deadlines. Their work is of the highest quality and their customer service is top notch! We really appreciate having a fabricator like Erie Custom signs. They are always up for a challenge and continually produce our unique sign designs." Beth Geddio
Erie Custom Signs is amazing! My subcontractor received the signs ahead of schedule, which will ensure that they are installed on time. Thank you again for your assistance in this quick turnaround. I will be using your company again in the future! Brian Whitecap, Tusick + Associates Architects, Inc.

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