Yard Sign Case Study: Henry Howell For City Council

Real estate broker Henry Howell recently ran for council in Montgomery, Alabama. Howell’s long-standing reputation as an honest and trustworthy businessman meant he had the potential to become a serious candidate for an open seat on the Montgomery Council. His biggest hurdle will be raising awareness and hype about his campaign because he was relatively new to politics.

Howell’s campaign manager, Brad Wutin, knew about the importance of branding for the campaign, so customers recognized Howell when voting. For the Howell brand, he chose two shades of blue (dark blue and airy) that convey a message of professionalism. These colors, along with the slogan “The Right Choice for Montgomery” were used in all campaign promotional materials.

Marketing investment

Wuten and Howell knew that the most effective way to get campaign recognition was to use political signs. During the campaign season, these signs on the lawns can be seen throughout the city. Wanting to stand out from the crowd, Henry decided to take a simpler approach. While his rivals decided to save money by ordering inexpensive corrugated cardboard signs that they randomly hung around the city, Howell took aim at the top voters who already supported his campaign. Using better aluminum panels placed in real estate frames, Howell promoted his campaign in well-connected backyards. Howell’s initial investment in this campaign to create high-quality garden signage was $10,000, and the company has placed them in more than 250 homes.

Expanding the campaign

When the townspeople began to see Howell’s signs in the backyards of his neighbors and learned about his campaign, the campaign office was flooded with phone calls asking for more. For example, Howell invested an additional $5,000 in additional bespoke garden panels to add more homes to the city. Even local companies joined in and expressed support for the new candidate.


On polling day, Howell defeated his opponents with an overwhelming majority of 68%. “I think what sets our campaign apart is that our board really stood out,” Brad Wutin said. “People saw that Henry was serious about it and responded with tremendous support.”


For ambitious political candidates, it is important that your name is a household name among your constituents. Visual recognition is very useful in polls, so use road signs to get voters’ attention.
You won’t be the only one who orders garden signs, so look for ways to make them unique and stand out. ‘Brand’ can be very useful for your campaign, such as colors, slogans, etc.
Large exposure is important, but quality is more important than quantity. Not everyone will vote, so look at your demographics to find the key areas where you should place tables.
Spend money on quality signs that show you’re serious about your campaign.
Michael Allen is Director of Marketing in Boston, Massachusetts. He has worked in large corporations and small local businesses for more than 20 years. His extensive experience in marketing makes him an expert in helping business development through marketing tactics.