Are you fascinated by the mesmerizing glow of neon signs, the vibrant allure that adds character to streets and businesses alike? If so, then starting a neon sign business could be your ticket to turning your creative passion into a profitable venture.
This comprehensive guide will walk you through the essential steps and considerations to help you start your journey in the neon sign industry.
Drafting Your Neon Sign Business Plan
Every successful business venture begins with a well-thought-out plan. Your neon sign business plan will serve as your roadmap to success. Following are key steps to follow:
- Business Name & Entity: Choose a distinctive name that reflects your brand identity. Decide on the legal structure that suits your business, whether it’s a sole proprietorship, partnership, LLC or a corporation.
- Financing: Determine how you’ll finance your neon sign startup. Consider personal savings, loans or investors.
- Business Bank Account: Open a professional business bank account to manage your finances effectively.
- Accounts & Taxes: Set up an accounting system and stay in touch with your tax lawyer.
- Licensing: Make all the compulsory licenses to work according to the law.
- Equipment & Tools: Invest in the equipment, software and tools needed for neon sign production.
Estimating Startup Costs
Launching a neon sign business involves financial commitments, influenced by factors like location and operational expenses. An estimated starting cost is approximately $7000, hence, the costs may vary.
Keep in mind that not all expenses may apply to your specific situation.
Custom Neon Sign Creation
Understanding the process of creating custom neon signs is crucial to delivering high-quality products. There are two main types of neon signs: traditional and LED.
Here’s a breakdown of the LED neon sign creation process:
Step 1: Share Your Design Idea
Begin by emailing your design concept to a reputable neon sign manufacturer. You can provide sketches, digital artwork or even describe your vision. Be sure to specify size, colors and any special features.
Step 2: Consultation
Expect a phone call from the manufacturer to discuss your idea in detail. You’ll have the opportunity to refine your design and ask questions.
Step 3: Quote
Once your design is clear, the manufacturer’s graphics team will create artwork for a quote. The sales team will then provide you with a cost estimate.
Step 4: Proof Approval
Upon accepting the quote, a final proof of your neon sign will be generated. Hence, it will reviewed.
Step 5: Manufacturing
The manufacturing process typically involves seven stages:
- Machining the Backing: The sign’s backing is crafted from materials like acrylic, metal or wood.
- Preparing for Paint or Vinyl: Detailed designs may be painted rather than using vinyl.
- LED Installation: Low-voltage LEDs are embedded inside the acrylic tubing.
- Final Assembly: All components are assembled and mounted onto the backing board.
- Quality Control: A thorough testing process ensures your sign meets quality standards.
- Packaging: The sign is carefully packaged for delivery.
Step 6: Receiving Your Sign
Your neon sign will be delivered promptly and as LED neon signs are energy-efficient, you won’t need complex installation or specialized contractors.
Neon Sign Business Acquisition or Startup?
Consider whether to start your neon sign business from scratch or acquire an existing one.
Following are some advantages & disadvantages to consider:
Benefits of Acquisition:
- Acquired businesses often generate immediate profits.
- They may have a loyal customer base and established brand identity.
Drawbacks of Acquisition:
- Existing processes and systems may not align with your goals.
Don’t Rule Out Franchising
Franchising is another option to explore. It offers advantages like a higher survival rate compared to independent startups and access to established resources + knowledge.
Starting a neon sign business can be a lucrative venture for those with a creative flair and a passion for illumination. By following the steps outlined in this guide and understanding the custom neon sign creation process, you can turn your vision into a brilliant reality.