Georges Claude of France developed the first Neon Lamp in 1902 and he introduced Neon to America as a marketing tool in 1923 when a Packard Automobile dealership in Los Angeles purchased two neon signs for an amazing price of $24,000. Outdoor exposed Neon advertising gained popular appeal with businesses and their customers throughout the 1940’s and reached its heyday during the 1950’s with elaborate artistic designs and unique animated displays.
Neon lost its place as the primary outdoor advertising tool in the mid 1960’s as state and local governments created stricter regulations on outdoor signage and cheaper alternatives became available. These changes ushered in the boxy cabinet type of outdoor streetlyte signs that still dot our landscape. Although these big box cabinet style Florescent signs were less expensive and lacked unique style, for the next three decades these cabinet type signs became the outdoor advertising signage of choice and Neon was relegated to small window signs, clocks and inside displays.
Starting in the late 1990’s many high profile projects such as the 1999, RT 66 Restoration Act, helped to preserve many of the iconic retro Neon signs of the past. Today, Neon has again gained popularity with a new generation as art, architectural enhancements and in business advertising clocks and signs that help business stand out and build their brand. Neon’s main competition in the sign and clock advertising venue are colored plastic tube Florissant’s and the newer LED lighted displays. However, neither can compare with the true color and visual appeal of genuine Neon and they lack the unique retro appearance and the artwork found in a custom made neon sign or clock.
Neon’s retro appeal, large color palette, artistic qualities, attention drawing visibility and that Neon is not as commonly used as some other forms of illuminated signage, Neon offers businesses a unique advertising tool and brand building opportunities. In particular Neon Clocks may be one of the best and affordable business advertising and branding tool available. In general if there is a clock available people are compelled to look to see the time, and the Neon Light helps to draw their attention. When the Neon Clocks face is adorned with your business name, logo, product or the service you provide potential customers will remember you. The artistic quality associated with this form of advertising and branding helps to instill a sense of pride in your service or product with your employees and customers that they will talk about. As an example, a Neon Clock in your store front window facing the street becomes a landmark, shoppers and passerby’s alike will appreciate the convenience of seeing what time it is and will associate the Neon clock with your business and brand helping to increase sales.