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How to design the right advertising parasol for your business.

Pierre Christiaens | Biography

Delen: Verspreid de boodschap, niet het virus.

35 tips for POS marketing that really bring in the money

Advertising parasols are now a permanent fixture in the street scene of any town or city. They can attract existing fans of the brand to your terrace or point of sale, but they can also tempt wavering customers to buy your products on impulse.

So how do you choose the right advertising parasol for your brand?

  • What shapes and what kinds of printed message work best?
  • What are the consequences of different types of material for the promotion of your products?
  • Is illuminated advertising an option?
  • How do you use co-branding strategically as part of your marketing plan?
  • What printing techniques are suitable for your objectives?

In his book “Create the right advertising parasol”, parasol coach Denis Potier brings together the fruits of 25 years of experience with point-of-sales marketing parasols. We’d like to share a few of the practical tips for marketeers from this book.

Deceptively simple

Parasols may seem like simplicity itself, but anyone who makes strategic use of them for marketing purposes knows that appearances can be deceptive. The success or failure of branding depends on making careful choices in terms of the size, shape, material, colour and printing of the parasols.

Parasols offer far more possibilities than you would expect at first glance. So how do you choose the right materials, the ideal size and location for your logo, and the most effective advertising strategy, if you don’t know about all the alternatives?

Form follows function: round or rectangular?

Parasols generally come in two basic shapes, round or rectangular. Round shapes can feel more playful and summery, rectangles are sleeker and more efficient.

There are many advantages to a rectangular parasol. They look good set out parallel to the frontage of a building. To transform an entire terrace into an attractively shady spot, place large rectangular parasols close together. It’s not so easy to protect an entire table from the sun with a round parasol.

Keeping everything dry

Guttering between the parasols can keep the whole terrace dry. This is vital for operators in the hotel, restaurant and catering industry, as they don’t then need to reserve space indoors for customers who will otherwise rush inside when it rains. Over the course of a year, this can result in substantially increased revenue.

And rectangular parasols aren’t just the ideal shape to provide optimal cover for your terrace: printing a brand logo on a rectangular parasol immediately adds a feel of efficiency and a sleek, contemporary style.

Symmetry and freedom

Round parasols are perhaps more exuberant, they can give a terrace a cheerful effect. A round parasol symbolises summer and holidays. Unlike the rectangular version, they can be freely rotated, and they look the same from any viewpoint. No matter how the end user sets them out, they display the same symmetry, regardless of the viewpoint of a passer-by viewing the terrace.

If your aim is for customers to eat and drink without disturbance under your parasols, the round versions are perhaps less ideal, particularly if you need to take account of the position of the sun.

Co-branding in the long term

Imagine a market square with dozens of cafés and restaurants. The terraces are packed with people enjoying the sunny weather from the shade of parasols. Among the drinks logos on the parasols, we also spot the name of a restaurant or café here and there: useful as well as looking more professional.


Catering establishments do like to see the name of the business on parasols lined up in front of their premises. This helps the customers to find the terrace they are looking for, while the logo or name becomes a highly visible element in the street scene. So your customers in the hospitality sector will appreciate it if you print the name of their businesses on their parasols alongside your own branding.

This creates a win-win feel, something your clients will be willing to pay for. If you’re taking this route, consider supplying premium parasols with a frame and fabric offering a service life of 5 to 10 years. This approach means that the client’s investment in beautiful parasols is at the same time a means of negotiating long-term contracts.


Print the name of the catering business on the protective sleeve provided with the parasol. This means that the name of the establishment is always visible, but it also ensures that the owners will actually use the protective sleeve, increasing the service life of the parasol. Another win-win situation!

Where to place your logos on a parasol.

The popularity of parasols is due in large part to their universal power to attract and the virtually unlimited opportunities for personalisation. But where is the best place to put a logo on a parasol? And what is the ideal size for such a logo? How many logos and slogans do you print on each parasol?

Hot and colourful, or cool and restrained?

As a starting point, follow the house style and character of the brand in question. Are you going for loud and proud, or discreet and refined? There’s little value in a logo nobody sees. On the other hand, an over-large logo looks tasteless and over-the-top.

Account should also be taken of the operator of the premises where the parasols will be used. They won’t want to shell out for parasols where their own messages are drowned out by shouty logos and images. Passers-by will also very quickly make associations with your brand, so you need to help them make the right choice.

Big, bigger, biggest

The ideal size for a stylish but still easily visible logo is around 30% of the width of a triangular segment of the parasol fabric.

The position of the logo on the parasol is also important. Avoid printing the logo too close to the edge of a triangle. Depending on the logo, work out a minimum edge around the imprint which is just visible enough at a distance, without looking ugly from close up. Also avoid placing the logo too high.

You can also play around with the number of logos on each parasol. If you can find the courage to rein yourself in, you will often deliver a visually stronger message. In this case, less can very definitely be more. Take the time to compare different designs. Sometimes a single small or medium-sized logo on a neutral background looks better than multiple repeated logos.

Think about the end result

When assessing a printed logo, think about the actual situation: how does the terrace look for example with four parasols set out side by side? Is the overall look balanced and tasteful? Is the logo striking enough without disturbing the visual line of the terrace?

A book full of parasol advice

These three tips are based on the practical advice Denis sets out in detail in his book “Create the right advertising parasol – 35 Tips For Marketeers”. Has this whetted your appetite for the other 32 tips in this standard work for POS marketing?

Send me the book “Create the right advertising parasol”:

In this book, Denis “Mr Parasol” Potier shares the fruits of his 25 years of experience to help you select the right parasol for you. He will act as your guide on a journey to find the parasol that’s a perfect fit for your brand. His ability to bring this search to a successful conclusion is based not only on his exhaustive knowledge of advertising parasols, but also on a thorough understanding of brand marketing.

Delen: Verspreid de boodschap, niet het virus.

Pierre Christiaens
Contact me: christiaens @ symoparasols.com https://symoparasols.com