You know when you're driving down the interstate, and there are those big blue signs that say "EXIT 40" followed by a bunch of gas stations, restaurants, hotels, or some kind of attraction.

We were talking this morning about those signs and wondered how they decide which businesses are advertised on them.

Google Maps
Google Maps
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After a few callers, and some good ol' fashioned Googling, we found that in the state of Iowa, you pay to advertise on those signs.

It makes sense because there's usually some sort of business that's closer than the one on the sign, but they don't pay to advertise. Probably because if you're pulling off to find a gas station, you're stopping at the one next to the off-ramp.

In Iowa, the DOT pushes the advertising opportunity to have your business on their website. They, of course, promise that your sign will have thousands of daily impressions.

For the cost, they say it costs about $2.50 a day.

IDOT
IDOT
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$2.50 x 365 days = 912.50 a year.

So, for about a grand, you can advertise your place like "FartFace McGillicudy's Bar & Grill," as one caller suggested.

As far as how the signs are made, we found this cool guy on TikTok who works at a sign shop that does custom orders for private businesses.

They use a cutout of the sign's print, which is like a giant sticker. For this video, he made a Do Not Enter sign.

Austinmollno via TikTok
Austinmollno via TikTok
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Next, he adds the white reflective backing that sits under the red to the sign by using a roller to make sure it's not bubbled.

@Austinmollno via TikTok
@Austinmollno via TikTok
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Then comes the colored red part with the letters cutout.

@AustinMollno via TikTok
@AustinMollno via TikTok
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And you can check out his full product here:

This Austin guy also makes the goofy ones you'd see in your friend's mancave, like this "Speed Limit 69" sign:

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