Finding customers often means showing them that they’ve always needed what you can provide but they just didn’t know it. I recall an example I’ve mentioned before but it’s as applicable now as it was when I first came across it.

I knew a coffee shop owner who had a lot of difficulty turning passers-by into customers. Part of the reason was that the people walking by didn’t notice the coffee shop because the landlord insisted that all the tenants had the same black and white awnings and name signs—that made it hard to be noticed. But there were of course other ways to attract attention. One was was to place a sandwich board on the sidewalk. I don’t need to tell you how effective a sandwich board can be if it’s eye-catching, and what’s more eye-catching than a funny quote or expression?

So in the case of this particular coffee shop owner, if  a sign shop approached her with an offer to rotate a series of sandwich boards outside her coffee shop, say weekly, she would have gone for it. From the sign printer’s perspective, this concept could be expanded to include other coffee shops and similar businesses around the city (but obviously not competitors on the same street) and the signs could be rotated among them.

At the time I did a quick search for examples of sandwich board material for coffee shops:

  • “We don’t speak Pig Latin, Klingon or Starbucks. Please order a small, medium or large”.
  • “Depresso; the feeling you get when you run out of coffee”.
  • “Hello darkness, my old friend.” (Accompanied by an image of a black coffee).
  • “We are open. Coffee awaits.”
  • “You’re going to do amazing things today but you need a cup of coffee first.”
  • “Coffee dealers and local milk pushers.”

Sandwich boards like these are bound to attract attention, a smile, and business. And why limit the idea to coffee shops?  But you have to give it some thought, be creative, and get out there and find work for your Roland. Fuel it with creativity.