I recently made a quick expedition into Tonic Towers in order to grab a second screen, some stationery other supplies, and on my one hour walk each way, I started mulling over the signs people had put up on the doors of their shops, bars, and other businesses to tell people they weren’t there.
Now for my colleagues’ amusement I assembled these into a quick photo album, scoring each one out of ten, and pointing out weird/quirky approaches, language, design style. But actually it did serve to highlight some real differences in communication style, and that told me a lot about the organisations behind them, and what they prioritise
Almost everyone had some kind of message to customers, as you might expect, but some had gone beyond this to add something for suppliers or the posties. Some had explanations of how to shop with them online, how to find an alternative provider online, or just general advice on how to keep safe and well. Probably the most extensive was for The Real Greek restaurants, who had a full letter from the owner to all concerned.
Now more is not necessarily better - the one below came third in the overall rankings for getting to the point, even if it lacked a little something on the design stakes…
Most businesses hadn’t really thought about this at all - most just a rapid word doc, some with a logo or letterhead, but a few had really put some thought into the fact that this would be representing their business and that perhaps it should look good.
It’s understandable if this wasn’t people’s primary concern when lockdown began, but it’s been two months now, and that’s a long time to leave the literal shop window looking shabby. Cote Brasserie a good example of this done well
But actually the one that stole the show in my own small sample - although admittedly one so eclectic it included Southwark Cathedral, The Church of Scientology and The Salvation Army - was the Globe Theatre, who put something so beautifully simple, hopeful and on-brand I awarded them the prize.
Call for submissions
So I’d love to see any you’ve spotted in your local area - and what’s either impressively good or bad about them in your opinion!