Hate prospecting?

Hate prospecting?

You're not alone if you hate prospecting, meeting new customers, or interacting with people you don't know. It's a common dilemma among introverts in particular, and many small business owners are introverts. The problem this poses for the introverted shop owner is that interacting with customers...

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Adding new equipment in 2023? Buy or lease?

Adding new equipment in 2023? Buy or lease?

If you're thinking of acquiring more equipment in 2023, you should know that BDC has published a paper on the buy-or-lease issue. They know that cash flow and the expected life of the equipment are key in making your decision and the paper in question (available on the BDC website) delves into the...

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Roland TV

Roland TV

Okay, so the TV above has nothing to do with Roland TV, but isn't it a great attention grabber? About Roland TV . . .  It's a facility on the Roland DGA website that features videos on a variety of topics about Roland equipment. It's designed to answer questions and explain how to get the best out...

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Stanley’s holiday dates

Stanley’s holiday dates

All four of Stanley's branches will be closed from 24 December 2022 to January 2nd 2023 inclusive. Everyone will be back, well rested and ready to get you off to a great start on 2023 on Tuesday, January 3rd. From now until closing on the 23rd, please allow enough time for delivery of your orders....

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Proper care for vehicle wraps

Proper care for vehicle wraps

One evening a few years ago, I had a conversation with a pizza delivery guy driving a brightly-wrapped Fiat 500. He told me that he didn't have a car of his own but that his boss allowed him to drive the Fiat provided he kept it clean and shiny. I thought that sounded like a good win-win...

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Visual hierarchy

Visual hierarchy

We've dealt extensively before with what makes a sign readable. It seems, based on the signs I see when I'm out and about, that all aspects of this topic cannot be repeated enough. It's not hard to spot signs that make you wonder if the designer had any understanding at all of what the sign was...

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Common online business scams

Common online business scams

The thumbnail version: Bank of Montreal has just issued a comprehensive pamphlet on online scams. The full version: It is well worth reading the entire pamphlet because, sadly, businesses and individuals are increasingly being targeted by online scammers. Some of the scams have become so slick...

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Shows

Shows

The thumbnail version: You must attend shows if you're to remain informed and  competitive. The full version: You can keep your sign shop up to date with the latest technology and techniques, or you can let your competition leave you behind until it becomes too late, difficult, or expensive to...

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Pivoting. What is it and why would you do it?

Pivoting. What is it and why would you do it?

The thumbnail version: Sometimes the signs point to a needed strategic change. "Pivoting" is a term used to describe a strategic change. The full version: There are negative and positive signs that point to a needed change—a change of direction or strategy. Stagnation, predicted results not...

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What does your email address say about professionalism?

What does your email address say about professionalism?

The thumbnail version: Email addresses say something about the business's professionalism. The full version: I received some good advice many years ago when business went online and email became a thing. Allow me to pass it on. The advice assumes that you have a website in your business’s name—a...

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Editing and quality control

Editing and quality control

The thumbnail version: Obviously quality control is important. Sometimes it can slip. The full version: Every sign shop you ask will always tell you that they have a vigorous quality control process. Well how is it then that from time to time people send me images of signs with obvious errors? How...

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Protecting your passwords from Google’s servers

Protecting your passwords from Google’s servers

The thumbnail version: Google's Enhanced Spellcheck could pose a security problem. You could be sending everything you type, including passwords, to Google's servers. The full version: RGCS is reporting in their latest newsletter that if you're using Google's Enhanced Spellcheck, it could be...

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Winter and shipping issues

Winter and shipping issues

The thumbnail version: Winter in Canada presents shipping problems. The full version: Winter in Canada can mean shipping problems. If you're a sign shop receiving vinyl and ink deliveries for your Roland, you should know that these items are okay to ship even when it gets really, really cold. But...

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Vinyl cutting for heat applications to garments

The thumbnail version: It's becoming popular as an additional income stream among sign printers with Roland plotter/cutters. The full version: Roland is promoting the concept of using your plotter-cutter to produce vinyl shapes for heat-pressing onto garments. This is just a further indication of...

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Choosing or changing your business name

Choosing or changing your business name

The thumbnail version: It's the same principle as designing an effective sign. Doing it right can set you on your way to success. The full version: I've written about the importance of thoughtful sign design if the sign is to be effective. Choosing a name for a new business, or changing the name...

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Strike a deal to outsource your marketing

Strike a deal to outsource your marketing

The thumbnail version: You can probably benefit from better marketing of your shop. You can also probably find a creative way to pay for it out of the additional business gained. The full version: Nowadays we have a torrent of advertising and promotional material coming at us all the time in every...

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Do you need to conduct a SWOT analysis?

Do you need to conduct a SWOT analysis?

The thumbnail version: SWOT is an acronym for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. What will a SWOT analysis do for you? The full version: A SWOT analysis will provide as clear a picture as you can get of where you stand in your market, what growth opportunities may exist, and what...

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Is poor taste poor business?

Is poor taste poor business?

Thumbnail version: Occasionally one sees controversial signs or billboards that reflect poor taste. Does poor taste on a sign or billboard reflect badly on the printer? Does a printer take a risk being associated with controversial jobs? The full version: Every now and then a billboard or sign...

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The sign industry and direct-to-garment printing

The sign industry and direct-to-garment printing

The thumbnail version: Garment printing has been trending in the sign industry for some time now. Proof lies in articles now appearing in sign industry media. Time to think differently. The full version: The interest in direct-to-garment printing is accelerating. You can tell by the attention the...

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BOCSI awards 2022 results

The thumbnail version: A Best of Canada's Sign Industry award puts a shop on the map. 2022's winners should serve as inspiration. The full version: The Best of Canada's Sign Industry awards winners have been announced. You can see the full details in the November edition of Sign Media Canada. The...

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Your Roland is the vehicle, creativity is the fuel

Your Roland is the vehicle, creativity is the fuel

The thumbnail version: You have the income-producing equipment. So fuel it with creativity to produce the income. The full version: You have a Roland printer-cutter and you know that you can produce great signs with it. Now what? Do you wait for customers to beat a path to your door? To bring...

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How does your sign shop promote itself?

The thumbnail version: You have to promote the fact that you exist. Why not promote your shop the way you promote your customers—with signs? The full version: In rural Nova Scotia, as you approach villages and smaller towns in particular, it's common to come across a large collection of business...

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Vinyl

Vinyl

The thumbnail version: Adhesive vinyls vary greatly in quality and application. The right vinyl for the right application is important. The full version: Vinyl has been in the technical news lately because the particular vinyls printers have been accustomed to using for specific types of jobs have...

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Trade show displays (yours and your customers’)

Trade show displays (yours and your customers’)

The thumbnail version: In-person trade shows are back. Eye-catching booth displays are make a difference. The full version: Trade shows provide a great opportunity to get a business noticed, be it yours or that of your customer for whom you're designing and producing booth display material. To...

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