Ever hear the saying that it costs 12 times as much to gain a new customer than to keep an existing one? This is why signage is so powerful, because it targets existing customers and encourages spending, increasing the lifetime value of each of your customers.
How can signage increase spending? Great question. And, rather than reinvent the wheel, let’s look at Robert Cialdini’s 6 Laws of Persuasion and give some examples of how they can be used in signage to increase sales
1. Law of Reciprocity
When people are given something, they generally feel compelled to give back. Give something to your customers and potential customers of value, preferably of low cost.
Example: A book store creates signage to promote a book signing.
2. Law of Commitment and Consistency
Humans are creatures of habit. We order the same coffee each morning, take the same route to work each day and buy groceries at the same store each week. Creating loyalty programs with added value is a great way to keep your most loyal customers coming back for more.
Example: Costco leverages its membership cards to create customer/brand entrenchment.
3. Law of Liking
The law of liking is the most basic driver of purchasing decisions. It’s powerful because it’s based a consumer’s past behaviour and preferences. There’s really not much magic to this, if you liked something in the past, you’re more likely to purchase it a second time.
Example: McDonald's created a whole campaign around it’s tagline, “I’m loving it” to remind people that even though McDonalds may not be the healthiest choice, people go to McDonalds because of how much they enjoy the food, not its health benefits.
4. Law of Scarcity
When people feel like something is scarce, they tend to feel more attracted to it, feeling that if they don’t act now, the item will no longer be available. Here is where limited promotions and editions work well. When you run a promotion, make sure that you only run it once. You will likely have recurring promotions, but try to make them different so your clients will not think something like, “I’ll just wait for the next promotion”.
Example: Ikea holds a “Midnight Madness” sale for one night only, with savings up to 50% off to move stale inventory and make room for newer products.
5. Law of Authority
When an “expert” or celebrity gives an endorsement, it establishes trust with the target market. We’ve all seen endorsements from athletes, actors, politicians and other notable people. This is because it works!
Example: Nike spends millions of dollars each year paying superstars like Kobe Bryant (below) and Michael Jordan to promote their products.
6. Law of Social Proof
There is safety in numbers – or so we think. The law of social proof is based on the fact that we’re more likely to try something if other people are trying it too.
Example: 99 Billion people can’t be wrong, right?