Spirit signs might be the most basic tactic I write about in this book and potentially the one with the biggest return on investment (ROI). When I say spirit signs, I’m talking about the simple cardboard signs that are slightly larger than a standard piece of notebook paper and are usually passed out just before major sports seasons. They say things like, “Go Blue” or “Go Bullodogs.” These are cost-effective branding tools that create an additional point of contact between fans, potential fans, and recruits with your university. Print as many as you can afford, or better yet, enlist a sponsor to help you pay for printing in exchange for their logo being placed somewhere on the sign. Pass them out to your fans at games and send them to your alumni, along with a number on the back that fans can call to order more for their friends and family. Encourage people to put these in their home windows just as they would do to signify their loyalty to a potential presidential candidate during campaign season. Imagine one of your coaches driving a high school athlete around town during a recruiting visit and in every window that athlete sees a sign supporting your university. How do you think that kid is going to feel about your school and community? College towns are attractive. It’s the little tactics like these that can go a long way in creating the college town atmosphere recruits and parents love. And the point to remember about the little things is that when executed on a large scale, they’re not little anymore.