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GreenSigns Chicago

Rebrand and remain familiar: a case study on a decade-old website.

Founded in 2012, GreenSigns is Chicago's first and only sustainable billboard company. GreenSigns purchases renewable energy to power ten digital billboards around Chicagoland and uses 100% recyclable, non-toxic polyethylene vinyl for its four non-digital signs. 


GreenSigns' sustainability commitment is completely unique in the billboard industry. However, you wouldn't know that by looking at their original website. Its founder, a pro-bono mayor and environmental activist, spent the last decade juggling business with influencing laws to protect wildlife and wetlands. So after publishing GreenSigns' website ten years ago, it was time for a facelift.

GreenSigns was ahead of the curve with its clean, contemporary design. But its messaging didn't compel advertisers to take action.

GreenSigns casestudy.png

GreenSigns leadership is bold and gutsy, which was evident in the original website. Phrases like "you want testimonials? We don't need no stinking testimonials." sprawled across the home page. 


(Dear reader, we both know your website needs testimonials.)


Though the site utilized strong language, it wasn't fashioned in a way that would compel an advertiser to make a move. No call to action was immediately visible above the fold, and the messaging centered GreenSigns rather than its customers. By fixating on GreenSigns as the sustainability champion, it inadvertently competed with businesses interested in working with them as a billboard partner. 

So we underwent rigorous branding exercises to clarify what sets GreenSigns apart in its industry. 

Most advertisers aren't aware that environmentally-friendly billboards are an option. This is a disserve to all businesses – especially those with green procurement clauses seeking to work exclusively with sustainable partners. 


With that in mind, we worked through multiple branding exercises to show businesses they can fulfill their green procurement responsibilities and advertise their products or services in a single stroke. 


Here's the one-liner I developed:


"We help your business reduce its carbon footprint with sustainable and affordable outdoor advertising."


This one-liner is straightforward, truthful, and positions GreenSigns as their customer's guide in their advertising journey. 

Original homepage text:

old gs.png

While everything said above is true, this language doesn't attract customers because it puts GreenSigns center-stage. Everyone's favorite subject is themselves, and customers want to be acknowledged when making a big purchase. 

New homepage(slideshow):

GreenSigns' old website did not have any facts or figures to represent its environmental impact, so we built out messaging that illustrates its various sustainability initiatives, both internal and client-facing.

Finally, I rewrote their about page and team bios, shot a video with the CEO, and gathered testimonials from long-standing clients as social proof of their excellent service. 

Then it was time to enhance the site design and update SEO.

GreenSigns wanted to refresh the sleek design of the original website without straying too far from its original concept. So I tapped in web designer and SEO wizard Drew Jensen, Founder of Fun House Entertainment, to bring our ideas to life. By performing in-depth research into out-of-home advertising, we targeted niche phrases with lower competition and a higher search volume to own more market share. By bidding on these keywords, it is much easier for GreenSigns to appear on the first page of Google. 

As a result, GreenSigns is ranking on the first page for their niche, significantly increasing organic traffic.

Within the first month of GreenSigns' new site being live, organic traffic grew by 30%, with more than 300 unique visitors. By using elements like custom videos, interactive graphics, and a better map, visitors are also remaining on the site longer. While previous sessions lasted just three minutes, visitors are now clicking through for an average of 12 minutes. And most importantly, GreenSigns is now receiving qualified leads thanks to the new contact form that is prominent on every page. 


The new site perfectly embodies the same fiery spirit that's been there since the beginning, but frames it in a way that puts GreenSigns' customers first. Now, GreenSigns is easier to identify as the clear choice for advertisers interested in shopping their values.

Does your branding need a makeover? Or maybe just a fresh coat of paint? Get in touch to schedule your free consultation now. 

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