Earlier this month I headed to Phoenix, Arizona to join FASTSIGNS International, Inc. at their annual convention. This year was quite a special one, particularly because the company is celebrating its 35th anniversary. To no one’s surprise – the theme was all about the celebration! And the entire city of Phoenix got to join in on the fun with FASTSIGNS celebratory signs making their mark across the downtown area. Every sidewalk, window, elevator door, etc., en route to the conference hall had FASTSIGNS branding to showcase the incredible milestone and convention – a prime example of their ability to help clients and businesses generate awareness and communicate to their customers through utilizing FASTSIGNS’ expertise. A few examples:
For some more background on the company, FASTSIGNS locations provide comprehensive signage and visual graphic solutions to help companies of all sizes and across all industries attract more attention, communicate their message, promote their products, help visitors find their way and extend their branding across all of their customer touch points. The brand is known as the leading sign and visual communications franchisor in North America, having been ranked the #1 franchise opportunity in its category in Entrepreneur magazine’s Franchise 500 for the past four years, and is the worldwide franchisor of more than 700 independently owned and operated centers in 9 countries including the United States, Canada, Chile, England, Grand Cayman, Puerto Rico, the United Arab Emirates, Malta, and Australia (where centers operate as SIGNWAVE®).
The annual convention brought together the FASTSIGNS corporate team, vendors, industry experts and hundreds of franchisees from across the world. Franchisees had the opportunity to interact with CEO, Catherine Monson, and fellow leaders of the company, learn key insights for 2020, speak with vendors about the latest signage options and technology for their businesses and exchange experiences and best practices with each other about various topics. Additionally, attendees sat – most in tears – and listened as the keynote speaker Chris Gardner, whose autobiography, “Pursuit of Happyness” inspired the critically acclaimed, iconic film starring Will Smith, gave an emotional and motivating speech about perseverance and perfecting your talent, no matter how big or small.
Beyond attending the insightful general sessions, I had the opportunity to interface with the top-performing FASTSIGNS franchisees to learn more about their professional backgrounds, business goals, success with the brand, and so on, to help fuel our public relations media strategy for 2020. As a brand with international reach and domestic dominance, Fish serves as its public relations agency tasked with supporting their franchise development. We’ve found our most successful approach to securing quality media placements is to highlight the individuals who contribute to the greater good. The ones who uphold what it means to be part of a brand as impressive as FASTSIGNS, and those who are passionate about the businesses they’ve been able to build with the support of FASTSIGNS’ proven business model, resources and tools.
This strategy helped us land feature stories with Forbes and Entrepreneur in 2019, along with many other national, local and trade media placements. After spending a few days with the FASTSIGNS marketing team and immersing myself in the company’s 35 years of history along with its future plans, we’re equipped to dive into 2020 for another exciting year!