Promotional Stickers Spell Small Business Success / Business Solutions / Last Modified: February 22, 2017

Let's go low-tech for a minute and talk stickers.  In general, stickers have been steadily shrinking for the past 20 years. Take it...

Let's go low-tech for a minute and talk stickers.  In general, stickers have been steadily shrinking for the past 20 years. Take it from sticker guru Jeff Nicholson, owner of But while sticker sizes have shrunk, "the power of stickers for promotional marketing has steadily increased," says Nicholson.

The key to using promotional stickers successfully is picking the perfect size, design and wording that encourages people to place them in visible locations.  This is why the big bumper stickers of old have all but disappeared.  Meanwhile, smaller promotional stickers now proliferate on helmets, bikes, skateboards, windows, water bottles, lockers and hundreds of other places.

Smaller stickers are more versatile and subtle. Exposure increases as people willingly spread a name, logo or statement into the public arena. "We've seen a steady increase in sticker hang tags, sticker postcards, sticker business cards, sticker sheets and other creative formats for delivering long-lasting, identity-building stickers and decals," says Nicholson.

Quite simply, the science of sticker marketing has soared.  They've become an economical and essential tool in many business promotions.  "What's important to remember about promotional stickers," says Nicholson, "is that although they are basically mini-billboards, they are not perceived as advertising.  Stickers applied in visible locations are personal recommendations - literal signs of support for your business."  Supplying the right type of sticker to customers and fans transforms them into a no-cost sales force and encourages word-of-mouth.

Here are seven things you should know about creating stickers, from

  1. Keep It Simple:  A sticker needs to convey a message quickly, clearly, and often from a distance. Beware of small details, intricate graphics, more than three colors, and more than one simple message/image. Stickers are not newspaper ads. View them as very small billboards. Stick with a clear logo or a headline.
  2. Bigger Isn't Better:  The bigger the sticker, the easier to see, right?  True, but a promotional sticker won't be seen by anyone if it is never applied. Put big stickers on your company vehicles but give the public a sticker that they are willing and apt to apply.
  3. Consider Die-Cutting:  Stickers in unusual shapes get more attention. Circles often have no added cost, and any custom shape is possible with the use of a die.
  4. Think In Reverse:  Just because you are printing on white vinyl doesn't mean the background of the sticker needs to be white. For a one-color sticker use a printed color as the background and leave the copy white for a more effective image.
  5. Consider Back Copy: Don't waste the white space on the back of the sticker. Use it for advertising, coupons, news, postcard copy, any information you want to get into the hands of your prospects.
  6. Make It Clear:  If you are designing a sticker on clear material for application to windows, it needs white ink! White reflects light (more visible) while darker colors are translucent and blend with the dark window background. White vinyl is usually more visually effective than clear polyester.
  7. Stick Varies:  Depending on your purposes, stickers can come with sticky-stickerultra-removable adhesive, super aggressive adhesive (impossible to remove) or anything in between.

While there are scores of companies that offer promotional stickers, is a quintessential example of a small business that focuses on doing basically one thing, and doing it very, very well.  The company has been at the vanguard of promotional stickers for 20 years, and willingly shares its vast expertise on a helpful website that includes design tips and ideas, a sticker blog and video.

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