There are 3 things that a sign is:
A sign is an image or message used to represent a more complex notion. The sign is simple; but, what you do is complex. The simple (sign) has to help explain the complex (business). For example: The word “Restaurant” conveys the idea of food being prepared, offered for sale, and served in an environment conducive to eating. The word “Luxury” connotes extravagant decor, higher pricing, extraordinary service and an air of very proper decorum. When the two words are put together, then the phrase “Luxury Restaurant” paints a whole new and very vivid picture for the mind.
A sign is a display designed to attract attention and influence human behavior. It’s as if a voice is shouting out the words, “Look at me! Do what I say and it’ll be good for you.” Good signs make use of WORDS, reinforced by color, lines, borders, fonts, logos, and pictures to grab our attention and suggest a clear offer or payoff. Any logo or picture must build on, not disrupt the ideas painted by your words.
A sign is a symbol that stands for or suggests something else. The voice is now saying, “Here’s a logo or picture that I am going to use over and over until it comes to represent me in your mind, and sorts me out from the clutter.”