How many people feel they really know what a banner is; that they could easily fall into a print procurement job at any corporation and understand what to order for what situations? Let’s make this easy:
If you have a red carpet event in NYC and need to have a back drop with sponsor logos for photo ops, what you want is a step and repeat banner. Most are set up in banner stands that require assembly. This is the same kind of banner stand that is often used to hold a back drop with a scene for photo days and school dances. Although, if you see someone standing in front of a back drop at a trade show, it’s, more likely than not, a pop up banner display, as opposed to a step and repeat banner stand, being used.
However, some, which will be used on multiple locations and will have to travel, or which will be used in tight spaces will most likely be set up as retractable banners. Retractable banners roll up the way a window shade does and simply have to be pulled open, stabilized with a rod in the back and roll up just as easily when the event is over. Retractable banner stands are great for travelling. Just remember, since these will be used for photo ops, it’s important they are on a matte vinyl so the flash photography will not be reflected in the photo.
When you see parades and the people in front of a group are holding an 8 person wide sign, that’s a banner. When you see a sign similar to the one just mentioned, which is hanging, maybe in Madison Square Garden or at a New York Yankees game, that’s a banner. Grand Opening signs are usually banners. These banners can be horizontal or vertical although it’s important to remember that vertical banners can also be referred to as kakemonos. These kinds of banners often have grommets in them so they can be strung up. They can also be made with pole pockets so they can be displayed more sturdily. If the banner is going to be used outside, it’s important to decide if they need wind slits or if they need to be mesh.
Speaking of pole pockets, when you see advertisements on lamp posts for the local zoo or art event which are attached to the pole but extruding from it, those are street pole banners. These usually need wind slits as well and are not usually mesh.
However, banners which are hanging on buildings with windows are made of mesh as to not obstruct tenant’s views. Whenever you see a building with a large advertisement on the side of it, which is clearly over windows, that too, is a banner. These are the same kinds of banners used when you see advertisements zip tied to fences.
If you ever walk into a store and they have hanging advertisements that seem to be framed, those are just hanging banner stands. When that same store has a funny fin or tear drop shaped sign outside (often seen at car dealerships as well) those are banners in tear drop frames.
Basically, banners are everywhere.