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Signs and Smartphones

JimNeumeiersmMy friend Amir Eylon (Longwoods International) shared this newspaper article with me last week...and I honestly could go a couple different ways with the positions on both sides of the argument.

The most egregious comment first: A City Council member, in voting against his town's Tourism Committee's informed recommendations, said these words: Lodging tax revenues have paid for a lot of advertising, while this (wayfinding signage) is actually something useful for the city. 

He obviously hasn't been briefed on The Halo Effect, which clearly indicates that tourism advertising increases the likelihood of entrepreneurial investment in a community (something one would think he would support).

The same article, however, has this same city council member saying wayfinding signs are important because he doesn't own a smartphone.

It's always a problem when elected leaders believe their life experience is shared by their constituents...because it often isn't. Just as members of the Tourism Committee erred by thinking everyone does own a smartphone, as they rejected a proposal to fund wayfinding signage.

Smartphones have nothing to do with the question of wayfinding signage. The real question is whether you have more than one attraction in your community (and Wapakoneta does). Thus, if I'm coming for the Neil Armstrong Air & Space Museum...GPS won't tell me that there is also the Bicycle Museum of America or the Temple of Tolerance. Wayfinding signage does. 

Virtually every comment in the article is wrong...but, in the end, the City Council likely did right.

Amazing.

Bill Geist

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