This past year, The Garden Barn Nursery in Vernon, Conn. decided to update its logo and in-store signage, while also adding what it calls “sneak-peek” signage. According to Dustyn Nelson, business development coordinator for The Garden Barn Nursery, signage is the silent sales team. “Just as every sales team has to look good for the job, so does the signage,” Nelson says. “We are vigilant about replacing signs as they fade or age.”
Today’s Garden Center asked Nelson about the process of updating the company’s logo and signs, and how it’s been perceived by The Garden Barn Nursery’s visitors.
Q: How did you come up with the new design for your logo?
Nelson: We wanted to clean up the elements of our logo that were unneeded to give it a cleaner look. The logo had a color gradient that was distracting and often not visible with some uses of our logo. We also removed our address and phone number from the logo, as this was often redundant and not readable when the logo was made smaller. The text in the new logo is black to increase the visibility and readability from a distance. The increased use of black and dark gray within the logo gave the green aspects a darker and richer look to them. This is important, as dark greens are often associated with higher quality, thus why everyone wants a lush dark-green lawn.
One factor that is not apparent until a background is added is that the old logos do not have a transparent background. This becomes important in integrating the logo into advertising pieces.
Selecting fonts is a process that involves myself and one of the managers. I put together a design, including the text used in that piece. The manager who is very selective about font usage then selects the appropriate fonts.
Q: What type of information are you putting on your signs?
Nelson: Our staff member that takes care of signage pulls information related to the plant from a specific set of internet resources, as well as books. When the information is not easily found through those resources, the staff member consults with our nursery manager or other knowledgeable staff.
Q: How are your sneak-peak signs made?
Nelson: I design the signs, and then they are printed by a local print shop. The signs are designed using Adobe InDesign and printed on foam board to reduce the cost of producing them.
Q: What type of information is on them, and how do they offer a “sneak peek”?
Nelson: We have just started experimenting with this type of signage and will hopefully be expanding our use of it to get customers excited about what products are coming down the pipeline. Our current goal is to show off our growing facility, as this is relatively new. We want to get customers used to the idea of Garden Barn Grown products. Our sign offers information about the growing facility, along with pictures of the space. We try to use all of our own photos for our material. Overall, we are using the signage to provide customers with a preview of the products soon to be available to them.
Q: How do you determine which pictures to use, and is there any sort of video component?
Nelson: Pictures are selected by management and myself as the business development coordinator. Videos are currently being developed for sneak peek and informational purpose. Some of our preliminary videos can be found at GardenBarn.com/content/videos.
Q: What’s been the feedback from your customers?
Nelson: Customers are excited to see what is coming up. They love seeing behind-the-scenes processes and how the final product comes about. They love looking at a new perspective from our photographs.
As soon as we reopen in February, we begin to build anticipation. To start this early and show all of the stages of growth, we use a variety that was sold in one of the previous years and the current year.