Innovation & Risk-taking
The augmentation of technology into the yard sign has arrived. While others have chosen to innovate by going vertical, Compass has gone round. Of all the signs on this list, this is the only one truly willing to risk change on a large scale -- and it works. This round aesthetic features a digitally printed sign panel that is mounted within a built-in lighting system which is very eye-catching (to say the least) while still preserving the ability to read from a distance and at night, accomplishing something the typical sign has never been able to achieve. It also features a built-in QR Code to prompt consumers to download the Compass App.
Unveiled at Inman, the big reveal of the reimagined yard sign has stirred up the real estate community. The sleek design, plus the buzz surrounding it, make it our clear #1 Real Estate Sign of 2018.
#2 Keller Williams Luxury
Eye-Catching and High Class
The most unique features about the yard sign for KW Luxury International sign is Golden, eye-catching lettering made possible by its digital/screen hybrid printing process. Equally, and perhaps arguably more notable, is the clear coat application. This process seals and encapsulates the printed ink with a high impact resistant, ultra-gloss protection, resulting in a sign that looks better, longer.
The aesthetic design remains steadfast in their agent-centric model, by allowing Luxury Associates to brand themselves within their templates. Photographs are no longer on the sign and the approach is now more about the consumer, giving them pride in the fact that their home is a “Luxury” property, represented by a Luxury Associate. It's an impressive use of negative space while combining potentially three separate logos and Associate contact information that doesn't look too crowded, busy, or hard to read. There is no additional fluff on this sign and that leads to the potential buyer having no confusion about what information is most important.
#3 North Group
Balanced and Minimal
The North Group's minimal and strong branding really shines in their sign. Great use of white and negative space, not only that, but a preponderance of it. While many are losing the large headshot for more modern and simple information only, Amy Youngren has found a way to marry the two in a really nice balance. As the face of this luxury brand she still gets the facial recognition without overpowering the information that matters the most. The overall sign design represents how and why the graphics don't need to be bigger. Smaller graphics, with the use of balanced negative space, draws your eyes to where you want them to go. Without thinking about it. That's what "simple" means.'
Furthermore, simple is safe. Simple design relies on the integrity of the brand. Not vice versa. Your brand (what other people say of you) is represented through your logo. In other words, when people see your logo, they think of your brand. The goal is to have reciprocity, to invoke pleasant and calming emotions, which in turn, are attributed to your business. This sign has embraced simple, minimalist design.
#4 Live Love Homes
Simple and Creative
Live Love Homes stands out from the crowd in a big way by cutting through the noise of traditional yard signs, accomplishing multiple goals at once. Consistency in yard signs for all expansion locations? Check. KWRI compliant? Check. Local REC compliant? Check. Lead Capture? Check! Aesthetically disruptive design? Check! Check! Check! With a simple text to an easy number, you get just as much from an agent as you would with conflated URLs, phone numbers, and emails.
This is strong thinking outside the box and I would be surprised if it didn't have a positive impact on their business and connectivity. Kudos to the Ben Kinney Team on developing the now synonymous hand-holding-phone image to “text-to-lead”.
#5 Century 21
Bold and Full Of Character
Century 21's rebrand was one of the very best from this year. Deciding to start from scratch instead of just refreshing their brand was a bold move and it paid off for them in a big way. The use of minimal, flat design in their yard sign, as well as incorporating the new C21 logo mark into patterns, borders and abstract marks, is reminiscent of luxury brands like Gucci or Tiffany.
Keeping consistent with a "gold" color palette, the most refreshing feature is the two variants to better suit their teams. One featuring a darker palette as well as the beautiful new mark they designed this year, and the other a clean and modern lighter palette that accentuates the Century 21 gold.
Personal and Generous
Similar to Amy Youngren and North Group, eXp has found a way to keep the large headshot for agent recognition while not completely overpowering or ignoring the key reason these signs exist: information. Associates coming to eXp from other brokerages are bringing their brand with them and are polishing up their image on their way. Compared to other national real estate brokerages, eXp’s agent-centric model has loosened the chains on standards and identity requirements for yard signs significantly. eXp allows more latitude for agents to customize their yard signs, without the constraints of color use, how much, how little, size of brokerage logo (given local REC rules), etc…
Rather, the popular sign design trends for eXp (in addition to flat, minimalist design), are tending toward larger-than-life photos, prominent abstract logo marks, and less contact information. These designs are a good representation of just that.
Modern and Easy To Understand
Another change to the norm this year was RE/MAX ditching the 3d elements and shadows for a flat, modern aesthetic, and while it's not a shock or big change, it is a welcome one. The most significant upgrade to their yard sign is two-fold: Flat design and vertical orientation. Understandably, vertical signs are, in general, easier to read. The clean design elements ensure the information is clear and hyper-focused. Notably, RE/MAX is the only other company on our list that incorporates it's 'For Sale' within the actual sign itself (Compass being the other). There's very little confusion about what each element is or how to get in contact with the agent.
#8 Villa Real Estate
Eye-Catching and High Class
There are definite challenges to striking it out on your own and creating a brokerage but it does have its advantages - especially when it means you have the freedom to display whatever you want, or think is the most important, on your yard sign. Villa Real Estate really goes above and beyond to deliver a minimal, pleasant to look at sign without the often cramped, additional compliance information. By having a short and sweet company name and a well designed logo, they can really display their brand to the world and ensure readability is never a problem.