I haven’t blogged for sometime now. I took a very much needed break over Christmas, but now I need to get back at it. I’ll write more about my break and the envisioning I’ve been doing over the past few weeks, but for now, I just need to write!
While cleaning out my email in-box, I spotted a request for customer testimonials from the company that printed my campaign signs. As the testimonial started to creep up on 400 words, I thought to myself, “Why the heck don’t I just blog about this?” After all, what I have to say may be useful to more folks than just me.
This past fall, I ran in BC’s local government elections. This was the first time I’ve ever been involved with a political campaign. Since my campaign was 100% self-funded, and my budget was just $500.00, I had to make very cautious spending decisions. I decided to invest the bulk of my merger funds in professional signs.
I had left things a bit late, so I needed to get the signs printed quickly. I researched signage options available locally first because it’s always great to buy local and because I thought that they could produce the signs the fastest. When I found out just how long the process was going to take, I decided to look a bit farther, and I did some searching for Canadian political sign producers. At this point, I was still looking for plastic bag-type signs because I thought that they would be the least expensive option. When I discovered that I could get 100 corrugated plastic signs online for the same price (shipping included) as 50 plastic bag signs locally, the choice was obvious. I received quotes from two online printers (very promptly, I might add), one in Ontario and one in Manitoba. They were within $20 of one another, and I decided to go with the Manitoba producer, Canada Lawn Signs, because I thought that they could get it to me a little bit quicker and because their website was just so much more visually appealing. There’s something to be said about a clean, crisp website from a business offering marketing materials!
Staff member Rachel provided me with all the information I needed by email and telephone. I prepared the graphic myself and emailed it to Canada Lawn Signs at the end of the day on October 14th. My simple graphic was reproduced clearly, and the design helped to make them stand out at all times of day (even in the dark). A very few signs (maybe 5) must have been wet when they were stacked, so they stuck together, which created a bit of a problem with the image when I pulled them apart. This wasn’t an issue for me at all because all the signs were double-sided, but many locations where I was putting them up only needed a sign-sided sign, so I just turned the “bad” side to the back.
Tip: If you’re staking your signs in gravely or rocky areas (like the sides of the roads in Errington & Coombs), I highly recommend the single straight spikes for double-sided signs. They can be individually hammered into the ground (literally with a hammer). They’re versatile for uneven ground because you pound them in separately, and you can push your sign onto them all the way to down to the ground to create stability in windy areas. I found one of my opponent’s signs down, but I couldn’t put it back up for her because we couldn’t hammer the “H” style signpost back into the ground well enough because you need to hammer both stakes in at once. That said, for single-sided signs, I recommend wooden stakes, as they are VERY durable. A lot of my signs were vandalized/driven over, and some were dislodged from wind. If I ever run again, next time I would order more than 2 stakes / sign… perhaps 2.5 / sign. No one locally carried the stakes, and for some reason, we didn’t have enough of them for all the signs. I’m not sure if that’s because I was short-shipped stakes or if I was over-shipped signs, though. Also, hammering bent stakes into the ground is very difficult, so it is very useful to have extras on hand. I’d say that only a few of my stakes are still usable, but I still think that they’re more usable and versatile than the “H” style stakes and WAY better than plastic stakes, which are pretty useless in any terrain other than lawns.
If you’d like to take a look at some photos I took when we planted the first signs in the ground, you can check out my blog post here. Right now, my signs are just piled up outside of my house. I still haven’t decided if I’ll save them for some future run or if they’ll be used as roofing tiles for a loafing shed.
Disclosure: I purchased goods from this company and donated those goods to my campaign. I was contacted by the company after our transaction and asked to provide comments or a testimonial. In exchange, the company offered an entry into a draw for future custom printing. Possible compensation had absolutely no influence whatsoever over the content of my review. I was not asked to post my review publically, nor was that a requirement of the draw.