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The great creative minds in our blog are here to make your big ideas possible

04Aug

How to Clean and Care for Your Vehicle Wrap

Once you have made the great investment in vehicle wrap, the last thing you want to do is see it turn all dried, cracked or faded. Fortunately, if you abide by some easy do’s and don’ts, you can keep your vehicle wrap looking fresh and new for longer. It’s actually very easy to care for vehicle wrap and is well worth the effort (and saved money) in the long run. Having the right tools is the key to completing any job successfully and this is, of course, the same with your wrap. There are specially designed products for vinyl care so be sure to use only these high quality items.

19Jan

You Should Have Had Your Car Wrapped Yesterday

We hate to tell you this but…you should have had your car wrapped yesterday. Well, actually you probably should have done it long before that…but we aren’t judging! In all seriousness though, if your business isn’t utilizing vehicle wrap as a form of advertising you are truly missing out.

How do we know this? Check out this statistic. One car wrap can get between 30,000 and 70,000 views in a day! That’s one heck of a big audience that you are missing out on. Business owners spend hours a day trying to brainstorm new ways to get additional eyes on their brands and really, it’s as simple as getting a vehicle wrap. Still not convinced? That’s okay, here are six reasons that will get you pretty excited about the idea.

1. Vehicle Wrap Yields the Lowest Form of CPM than any Other Outdoor Advertising Method

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Wrapping your vehicle allows you to create a mobile billboard for a fraction of the cost of most advertising campaigns. As humans, we are attracted to moving objects rather than stationary ones so, knowing this, more and more people are utilizing this great method of advertisement. The ROI (return on investment) potential is endless.

2. Add Professionalism to Your Small Business

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If you have a small business, you understand the struggle of a smaller budget. Fortunately vehicle wrap is affordable and as we already mentioned, the ROI is higher than any other form of outdoor advertising. Vehicle wraps add that extra bit of professionalism that will not only spread the word about your business but also make your company look organized and well assembled.

This is especially true if you are in an industry that requires home visits like a delivery or service operation. Homeowners will feel more comfortable when a person from your company pulls into their driveway with a branded vehicle wrap as opposed to simply a personal vehicle. Think of it as a business suit. If you have a big meeting you don’t arrive in sweatpants right? The same can be said for your ride. Get ready to make a great first impression.

3. Reach a Wide Audience

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There are many types of advertising these days and as a result, consumers often block out this extra “noise” before it can disrupt them from what they are doing. Vehicle wraps however have the upper hand in this department. This is one great advertising technique that doesn’t interrupt the viewer. How do you feel stuck in rush hour traffic or when you are waiting for that seemingly endless light to turn green? We are visual creatures and in times of boredom, we are constantly looking for something to entertain us. This is where your vehicle wrap comes in. People will notice your cool logo, image or tag line and (if you’ve don’t it right) they will remember you!

By using vehicle wrap, you are reaching out to a much larger audience than you could in virtually any other sector of advertising. When consumers don’t feel trapped in some type of marketing message they are much more inclined to learn about your product or service with an open mind.

4. Increase Brand Recognition

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No matter whether you are a mom-and-pop store or a large corporation, the importance of branding can’t be overlooked. Studies have shown that consumers will begin to recognize your brand when you create images, taglines and logos. Brand recognition is essential for getting your targeted customers to do business with you. By decking out your fleet of vehicles in branded wrap you are inevitably raising your brand awareness and recognition. This means that even customers who are not yet ready to buy or use your service will have a better chance remembering your company when they are ready to pull the trigger on their purchase.

5. Your Employees Tend to Act More Professional

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This may be one benefit you never even considered! If your employees are driving their company wrapped vehicle, studies have shown their behavior will remain more in line with your company’s code of ethics. If you were driving a company car that had all your business and contact info on it would you flip off the person in front of you who just cut you off? Probably not. This is just one possible scenario, think of the many times we act out as drivers of anonymous vehicles. Once our company (and essentially management) could be contacted about our behavior during work hours, we might rethink many of those behaviors.

Okay, now that you know just a small sampling of the benefits, can you understand why we are saying you should have already invested in commercial vehicle wrap? It’s alright! It’s not too late to jump aboard this mobile marketing venture.

Tim Hilcove
Google

21Nov

Vehicle Wrap Designs – Inconsistent or Confusing Data

When you only have a few moments to grab the attention of those behind you or that you are passing by in your vehicle, you need to make that limited window of time count. Vehicle wraps can be a fantastic way to spread the word about your business…but only if you employ the proper strategy.

One common mistake many companies make is including inconsistent or confusing information on their vehicle wrap. This also includes inappropriate or nonsensical tag lines. If you are representing a mortuary, for example, going with any humorous or jovial tagline would be far from appropriate and would of course be offensive. If you are including a tagline, always be certain it matches the mood of your company, product and services.

Confusing data can also take the form of web addresses on the vehicle. We are all familiar with the Internet these days so including the http or WWW in your company’s URL is a bit overkill. It’s far easier for a potential customer to see and remember your web address if it isn’t hidden among these unnecessary characters. While on the topic of web addresses, be certain that your own makes sense for your businesses name. Of course in some cases the most appropriate URL may no longer be available but in most cases you may either be able to purchase it from the domain holder or come up with something still consistent (perhaps an abbreviation of the name). Remember, your goal is to present the information in an effective and easy-to-remember layout. Often we become so familiar with our brand and products that we can’t catch these confusing messages ourselves. When working on your vehicle wrap design, a professional can help point these out for you.  If it is possible to Google your business name and your website to come up at the top of the list it is unnecessary to have your website on your vehicle wrap.

Think about all the vehicle wrap designs you have seen recently. If you had to instantly recall one thing about one, what would it be? If it’s not the company’s name, they are clearly not doing something right! The most important design element you can have is a legible and dominant company logo. While you may want to include your contact information, if a person remembers nothing but your company name, they will still be able to find you, your location and phone number with a few clicks of the mouse. As a society, we have grown accustomed to Google searches for everything so if someone knows your business name and the product or services you offer, they are nearly certain to find you.

This all seems pretty basic right? Well if we add confusing or inconsistent messaging to this bold logo or company name, suddenly it becomes buried and lost. By keeping your logo as the center focal point on your wrap, a single web search will then direct them to all the other information, photos, accreditation and various other details you may be tempted to add to your wrap design. In this case, less is more! What do you want them to remember? Your name of course! So don’t get so wrapped up in the miscellaneous information about your business that you forget to make this the focal point.

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Protection Termite, keeping it simple = easy to remember!

Another mistake often made by businesses hoping to cut advertising costs is to allow more than one business to be included on a vehicle wrap. This is a massive mistake. Just like renting a few rooms out in your giant house to save money on the mortgage, some businesses may ‘rent out’ space on a vehicle wrap to cut advertising costs. You may think that you are in the clear so long as you are obviously not advertising your competitors brand but by including two different business types, let’s just say an attorney and a restaurant for example, you are sending a muddled, confused message. People may be so busy trying to make the connection between the two for instance (“if I eat at this restaurant, will I need an attorney to represent me when I suffer severe food poisoning?”) that your logo or company name may be all but lost. Suddenly saving a buck or two has now resulted in nothing more than throwing money out the window.

Along the same lines, if your company sells a variety of different brand name products, avoid sprinkling the vehicle in these logos. This will result in confusion and your audience will be researching those products in their Google search rather than your business.

 

Click Here To View All Of Our Vehicle Design Tips!

Tim Hilcove
Google

28Oct

How Too Much Information on Your Vehicle Wrap Could Hurt Business

Advertising is constantly evolving and we now have more and more ways to reach our customers. Vehicle wraps are a great way to get potential customers familiar with your brand but what if you are inadvertently turning them off before they have even seen your message?

This is one common mistake that well-meaning marketers make. While they believe so strongly in their brand that they want to list all the benefits, there is such a thing as too much information when it comes to your vehicle wrap.

Think about it this way – when you see a car with vehicle wrap, you are likely driving or even if you are not, the other car is probably in motion. How much can you possibly read in such a short period of time?

The answer is, not a whole lot. This is why it’s best to keep messaging short and sweet so that it does not distract from the logo or main point. Vehicle wrap should be placed in the same category as a billboard. After all, add some wheels to it and your ad becomes essentially that. Consider how much you can actually see and retain from the billboards you drive past each and every day. Do you remember a billboard with a few simple words and a logo or one that makes you squint or slow down to try and figure what it is all about?

The answer is clear – we typically follow the less-is-more approach when it comes to reading ads. This is intensified when we are distracted by other tasks, like driving in this case. One benefit that vehicle wraps have over billboards is that we have become so numb to many marketing messages we see on billboard signs that they often go unnoticed. While vehicle wrap has been around for some time now, we are often more apt to tune into these messages and admire the neat colors and interesting designs since we naturally notice moving objects over stationary ones.

Often images appeal to us as well. The old adage “a picture is worth a thousand words” really does ring true when it comes to ads. If we, as consumers, can relate to an ad based on an image alone, we are more likely to remember the brand.

So what happens when you clutter this with TMI?

In a nutshell, money is thrown out the window. If you list each and every service your brand offers then your message is lost, your customers don’t even see your logo or business name and there goes a potentially great campaign.

So how can you make your vehicle wrap a success?

Well, now that you recognize the importance of a short and sweet message also remember to use large, bold writing so that your message is legible. You can also use interesting graphics or colors to catch the eye of potential customers on the road. Adding contact information like a web address or a phone number can also be helpful. You never know when you are reaching a customer at just the right time in the sales funnel that they will want to call and make the purchase right away.

Also, stick to merely one or two messages. Assume that you will only capture the attention of nearby drivers for 5 seconds max. If you want to test the effectiveness of your design, have others (with no knowledge of your company) glance at the wrap for only 5 seconds and see what is retained. People tend to scan, especially when it comes to advertising messages so use this knowledge to your benefit.

The location of your images and text on your vehicle also must be strategized. Randomly placing these things were you find them aesthetically appealing may not be the most productive use of space. Consider that people tend to look at images first and then read left to right. With this knowledge, design a wrap that follows this natural pattern of the eye. If you were to place the image on the right, for instance, the eye may travel directly to the image and completely miss the text.

Tim Hilcove
Google

17Sep

How to Win Super Bowl Tickets

Business Connect ChallengeConsumer Final-2

29May

Vehicle Wrap Design | What You Need To Know

Choosing the right vehicle wrap company is an important decision for you and your business.  It can be a difficult choice with so many different companies jumping into the “wrap business” these days.  Many business owners fail to understand that vehicle wrap design is as important as any of a business’s other marketing and branding efforts.  Failing to understand that the days of simply lettering vehicles are gone, and continuing on with less than effective vehicle wrap designs will harm your business.

When people ignore your business name and message because it is visually boring or even worse unprofessional looking, that is a lost opportunity.  Add up all the lost opportunities, all the times when a potential client was looking at one of your service vehicles and they ended up not remembering your name, not remembering what you do – that is a huge lost opportunity to connect with a customer.   And making a negative impression through poorly designed or unprofessional looking design is even worse because a potential customer might actually remember who you are and feel so poorly about the way your vehicle looked that they will remember and actually AVOID calling you.  Properly branded companies are worth so much more than “no name” brands.  Not only when it comes time to sell the business and retire, but also while still in business.

Just think about Starbucks for a minute.  How is it that they can charge $3 or $4 for a cup of coffee and be lined up out the door every morning?!  Especially when McDonald’s sells coffee for $1 or less.  Speaking of McDonald’s, how is it that they are the #1 fast food restaurant every year?  In 2012 McDonald’s sales were 3 times that of the #2 restaurant chain, Subway.  In fact, McDonald’s sales were over 4 billion dollars more than Subway, Starbucks and Wendy’s combined!  A little side note:  At SmartWrap we are huge fans of McDonald’s and the systems they’ve developed.  Our ownership and management staff have over 30 years franchise experience with McDonald’s and we’ve often recalled our experiences there to improve SmartWrap’s systems.

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So how is it that some companies are so different from others?  How is it that some companies are so much more valuable than others, that some companies charge more and earn more and completely dominate the market?  The answer: Effective Branding.

So what is effective when it comes to vehicle wrap design?
We will get to the nuts and bolts later in this article, but for now the answer is: That depends on what the goal is.  Where do you want to be in a year?  Where do you want to be in 3 or 5 years?  What are you doing to meet those goals.  What type of customer are you trying to attract?  What type of customer are you not trying to attract? Some clients have been surprised that we ask about these sorts of things.

“What does this have to do with my vehicle graphics?”  they ask.  Or “Just design me something, you don’t need to know all about my business”  At first we found these types of statements stunning.  But instead of just leaving it at that and “just designing something”  we do what comes natural to us.  Ask more questions.  We take the approach that people have hired us to design not to be yes men who lead a customer right off a branding cliff.  In asking more questions we’ve discovered that the apprehension or confusion a client feels is because they don’t actually have specific business plans.  It’s difficult enough for a lot of small businesses to service the clients they have and try to make a living without having to write up lofty business plans.  And have them bound at office max with a great title page as if they were going to present them to the board of directors in a down town office.  In fact, nobody is going to read those plans.  But that doesn’t make having a plan unimportant.  Even if you as the business owner are the only one that ever reads it, having a plan – a road map of where you want to go is absolutely crucial.  Without this map, it will be much more difficult to reach your destination.  Without this map it will be confusing trying to decide what your logo should look like, what services you should or shouldn’t offer, who your ideal customers are and which marketing messages to go with in order to attract those ideal customers.  And the company you choose and trust to create your vehicle graphics better understand all of this otherwise you are going to waste a lot more money than just the amount you spent on the wraps.

Before we dig deep into elements of great vehicle wrap design its critical that we meet two of the greatest marketing and branding experts that have ever lived.  The wealth of knowledge and experience that these two gentleman has been invaluable to me personally as well as to SmartWrap and it’s design processes.  Reading up on Al Reis and David Ogilvy will give any business owner some valuable insight and direction.

Last time, what is effective vehicle wrap design?  While vehicle wrap design uses many of the elements of other marketing media, there are some crucial differences that can’t be ignored.  So in talking about what makes great design lets talk about pitfalls to avoid

Pitfalls-to-avoid

1: too much information

The vehicle is a moving.  Unlike print, internet or television, the person looking at the vehicle has a limited ability to digest the information.  Think of it as a billboard as you drive by.

Think of all the billboards you’ve seen.  What are they about?  What are the visual aspects and what are the words you see?  Invariably billboards are about the brand.  Not about the features and benefits of a product or service.  Think of a Budweiser billboard.  You don’t see the nutritional content up on the billboard.  All you see are the things that Budweiser hopes will elicit a favorable impression from someone who is likely to drink beer.  Think of a McDonald’s billboard:  A big picture of one or two food items and several words of copy.

The problem that most service based businesses who want to do vehicle wraps run into is too much information.  The business owner has a difficult time limiting what it is they do.  For example a home repair company will want to list all of the different kinds of home repairs they do from bathrooms, kitchens, living rooms, plumbing, windows, electrical, tile, cabinets, windows, pool repair.   By the time their list of services is complete their vehicle wrap resembles a renaissance era proclamation on a giant scroll.  There is no way anyone is going to digest all that information.  And worse, they will be distracted from the company name.  This means wasting money.  This means losing potential clients.  Another common mistake is made by contractors who list  “commercial” and “residential” on their vehicles.  So that means you work for everyone right?  It’s unnecessary.  It similar to Christmas lights in China that have a little warning attached “For indoor or outdoor use only”.  If you only do one or the other it will be important to let potential clients know, but if you do both, it’s just one more thing for people to have to read.

2. Inconsistent or confusing information

Inconsistent information can be a result of a tagline that doesn’t make sense for the type of business.  For example, you would never suggest a Mortuary have a tag line like “Happiest place on earth!”.   Inconsistent information can also be when a company name and their website name are different.  For example:  ABC Plumbing…visit us on the web at http//www.Arizonasbestchoiceforbplumbingandheatingandcool.com.  While we’re on the subject it is unnecessary to include http or WWW with a web address these days.  The internet has been around long enough that people know how to find websites.    To avoid the clutter of having the same information in different places consider making a simple switch on your vehicle wraps:   include .COM right after you business name.  For example ABC Plumbing .com

People search for millions of things every day on search engines.  People type in the search bar as much information as they can remember about what ever it is they are looking for.  Let’s say they saw your company vehicle on the road, what is the single biggest design feature you should include, above all else?  Your business name in the form of a readable logo.  If people can remember just that one single thing until they are able to type your company name into the search bar then they’ll find your website and therefore, they’ll find your phone number.  They’ll also learn about all of the other services you do, and can see photos of your work and read your mission statement.   But if you clutter your vehicle up with even just one word of information too much you will run the risk of them not remembering your name.  And when they’ll be googling someone else’s name that they did remember instead.

Sometimes people will try to save money on a vehicle wrap by getting more than one business on the wrap.  I’ve seen a restaurant and a personal injury lawyer on the same wrap.  Are you saying I might need to call Goldberg and Osborne after I eat at your establishment?  Sometimes companies will try to get advertising dollars from the product lines they carry.  And they end up with everyone else’s logo on their vehicle and no one remembers what all of this is for.

3: Photography

Photographic images can be a major problem.  First, if the images themselves are not extremely high resolution,  (See our photographic guidelines HERE)  then they’ll look terrible and will do harm to your public image.  Photographic images that aren’t of a high enough resolution will be “grainy” and pixellated, in other words they’ll look blurry when they’re blown up to the size of a vehicle wrap.  Secondly, even if the resolution is acceptable, if the photos are not at a certain level of professionalism they will not represent your brand well.  Reflections, bad lighting and bad angles will make the imagery look cheap, not how you want to be thought of right?

Even more important than these two points is the fact that photographic imagery is extremely difficult to incorporate across all of your marketing efforts.  Consistency of imagery is extremely important for a business/brand when shaping the impression a potential client might have.  If a pool company has generic pictures of water splashes on their business cards, a home owners pool on their brochures, and another image on their vehicles it makes it difficult for the consumer to identify the company quickly.

Another huge mistake companies make is having photographs of the products they sell on their vehicle wraps.  This is common in the Air Conditioning field.  Their wraps look like random pictures of grey cubes with vents on them, air-conditioners.  The simple fact is most people don’t care what the air conditioning unit looks like.  The most pressing concern in the mind of a person who needs to choose an Air Conditioning company is “Can I trust this company”  A vehicle wrap with pictures of machines and technology most people outside the A/C field don’t recognize is a huge wasted opportunity.  Having the logos of all the different brands you carry or service is irrelevant.  CAN I TRUST YOU TO FIX MY A/C??  Can I trust you in my house?  For women this is HUGE!  Studies have shown that 90% of the time it is the woman of the house that has to arrange for contractors to come to the house, and she needs to be there to let them in.  She wants to know “Can I trust this company inside my home, with my kids?”   They could care less what an A/C unit looks like.

Even if you think about this from a purely strategic stand point:  How are you going to differentiate your company from the dozens of other companies out there with pictures of grey cubed shaped machines on them?  certainly not by doing the same thing.

So you’re a pool supply or cleaning company.  Nothing says clean safe pool water and summer fun with the family like a bunch of pictures of round things, cylinders and domes with pipes and gauges right? wrong.  Or a picture of a high end luxury back yard when all you do is weekly pool service.  The wrap needs to be consistent with the service or products you supply

So you’re a caterer.  Nothing says “Wow I need to hire them”  like pictures of unrecognizable plates of food, glistening with grease and washed out under flourescent lights right?  Wrong again.  Or a picture of a massive catering event on a golf course with huge long tables and tents, when you’re actually a small caterer.  You won’t be getting calls for the types of jobs you can handle, and you’ll be spending your time fielding calls for jobs you can’t handle.

So you’re a painter, a remodeler.  Nothing says “That looks like a professional company I can trust”  Like a collection of photos of workers working on something in someones unfinished house.  Totally wrong, again.

Solutions:

Simple-Solutions

Too much information:

Carefully choose what information is critical and what information is nice to have.  Eliminate all information which is not critical.  Start with your logo/business name.  Next, choose the 1 service that you provide that you would absolutely love to have more customers calling about.  If you have several services, think of a word that sums all of them up.  Next, your tagline and lastly one way to contact you.  If you want a really great example of the kind of restraint and discipline I’m talking about take a look at Google’s homepage.  Take a look at the login pages of Facebook or any other social media site.  There’s an image, and you can login or create an account.  That’s it.  Transfer that to a vehicle wrap and you have:  A logo, minimal back ground or other non photographic design.  You have what you do, what your company is about.  And you have an option or two to connect, a phone number or a website.  For more detail on “Too Much Information”  see our article on it here.

Confusing or inconsistent information:

Stick to one company, one idea. Think about who you are and what you want to be known for and summarize that in a very short sentence.  If your website is different from your company name then consider changing the website.  At the very least leave that confusion off of your vehicle and go with your phone number instead.  Make sure your tag line is appropriate for the type of business you’re in.  Make sure it’s memorable and different.  “Your one stop shop”, “one call does it all”  are used by so many businesses out there that these tag lines are meaningless.  If you don’t have a good tagline, then don’t put it on your wrap.

Photography:

Limit images to professionally produced high resolution photographs.  (See our helpful photographic image guidelines here). At SmartWrap we prefer not to use photography. Why?  Photographs contain a lot of detail, which if you think about a moving target like a vehicle wrap –  will distract a potential client from remembering the most important details of all.  Your business name and what you do.  But if you insist on photographic images just make sure that they are of an advertising agency quality.  Badly lit, blurry and weird looking photography will lose you potential clients really fast.

 

 

Tim Hilcove
Google

 

 

 

 

22May

Quick Guide | Photographs for Vehicle Wraps

Quick Guide | Photographs for Vehicle Wraps

So you’re getting a vehicle wrap and want to include some photographs to help consumers understand what you do.  If you want to impress people instead of turn them away choosing the right images is really, really important.  Did we mention it’s important?  It’s really important!

Here are the rules when it comes to large format imagery (break these rules at your own peril)

1.  High Resolution.  300+ dpi.   As a general rule most images you find on a Google image search will not be good enough.  Anything with (k) next to it is way to small.  Anything taken with you cell phone is also too small.

2. The Camera.  If you plan on taking your own photographs or have a friend or nephew who has a camera you need to use a 10 megapixel camera or greater.  The camera should be a dSLR camera and the photos should be taken in the RAW format for best results.

 

Tim Hilcove
Google

22May

SmartWrap Wins AMA Spectrum Award

SmartWrap Wins American Marketing Association -Phoenix Spectrum Award for Design

AMA Bolg Post

PHOENIX, May 20th 2014.  The Phoenix chapter of the American Marketing Association held its annual Spectrum Awards at the Musical Instrument Museum (MIM) on Wednesday May 14th.

According to AMA-Phoenix Chapter President, Debi Lerkin, the Spectrum Awards are “…the Valley’s premier marketing awards event…to recognize the Valley of the Sun’s best and brightest marketers and their winning campaigns from 2013.”

Two of SmartWrap’s (SmartWrap.com) designs were finalists in the 2014 Spectrum Awards.  In order to be considered a finalist, a design needed to attain a score of 70 or higher on list of criterion adjudicated by a panel of six judges.  If the entrant did not attain 70 or higher they were not considered to be a finalist. The judging was rigorous and in some categories there was only one finalist scoring 70 or higher. This year’s judges included Darlene Latim, Senior Brand Director, Global Marketing for Revlon, Craig Yanagi, Marketing and Brand Strategy Manager, JVC Professional Video Products Company, Rob Fuggetta, Founder & CEO, Zuberance, Kim Steinmetz, Chief Marketing Officer, Arizona State University W.P. Carey School of Business, Sami Hero VP Global Customer Experience & Engagement Wolters Kluwer Health and Dan Tyre, Executive, HubSpot.

SmartWrap’s design for Lynda Bishop won the Spectrum Award in the Outdoor Category: Buildings/Wrap/Other   SmartWrap was the only vehicle wrap focused company to have entries reach the finalist stage and the only vehicle wrap company to win any award at the 2014 American Marketing Association Phoenix Chapter Spectrum Awards.

“We are extremely honored by this recognition”, said SmartWrap CEO, Malcolm Hilcove. “Producing great design is our passion.”

For more information on the AMA Phoenix Spectrum Awards, please visit: http://thespectrumawards.com/

 

04Apr

Vehicle Wrap Design | Too Much Information

Vehicle Wrap Design | Too Much Information

Think of all the billboards you see as you’re driving around town.  What are the images?  What are the graphics and words? Do you see companies listing all of the services that they perform? Do you see more than one tagline? Not often, and if you do it’s not nearly as effective and memorable as when the information is kept to a bare minimum.

Service based businesses often run into the “Too Much Information” problem when it comes to vehicle wraps.  We see it every day, a home services or home repair company will want to list all of the different kinds of home repairs they do from bathrooms, kitchens, living rooms, plumbing, windows, electrical, tile, cabinets, windows, pool repair.  And maintenance.  Another common mistake is made by contractors who list  “commercial” and “residential” on their vehicles.  So that means you work for everyone right?  It’s unnecessary.  It similar to Christmas lights made in China that have a little warning attached “For indoor or outdoor use only”.  If you only do one or the other it will be important to let potential clients know, but if you do both, it’s just one more thing for people to have to read.

With all this information the “vehicle wrap” ends up looking like a cluttered mess of random information that no one will ever read.  In fact all that jumble will succeed in doing is making potential clients look somewhere else at something they can understand.   To be brutally honest:  There is no way anyone is going to digest all that information.

The true cost of all this information is far more than just the money spent on the vehicle wrap design and installation.  Losing the opportunity to earn a customer and the potential revenue generated by that customer is huge!  Especially if you’re in the kind of business where you form long term relationships with your clients.   Think about how much money a home-owner will spend on maintaining their air conditioning system over the next 10-20 years.  Or how much will be spent on plumbing, renovating, or pool service or landscaping.  We’re talking tens of thousands of dollars if not more.  Think about this, really let that sink in.  You could be losing dozens of potential clients a month who could be spending tens of thousands of dollars if you go with the wrong vehicle wrap design.

So what can be done to eliminate all this information but still be able to let people know who you are and what you do?

Choose what information is critical and what information is nice to have.  Eliminate all information which is not critical.  When you’re thinking of what you do think of one or two word answers.  Plumbing.  Air Conditioning and Heating.  Landscape Maintenance.  Pool service.   Think about McDonald’s   For the first several decades of their existence every one of the golden arches had the word “Hamburgers” on it.  They did not have hamburgers, fries, soft drinks, ice cream chicken sandwiches fish and nuggets and bagels…

Think about Starbucks.   The sign says “Starbucks Coffee”  that’s it.  Burger King – Home of the Whopper.    Wendy’s – Hamburgers.   If you think about your vehicle wrap design from a general branding perspective it will go a long way to focusing in on what the core of your business is.

So where should you start? Start with your logo.  Every highly effective vehicle wrap is centered around a great logo.  You may think your logo is great but are you certain that it is?  Is it completely obvious from your logo what kind of business you are?  Is the text in your logo readable or is it fancy and hard to read in 3 seconds.  What about the colors?  Watch this video on world renown branding expert Al Ries to find out more about logo design. *Note*  Although his visual presentation could use a little updating the main points he makes are time tested and true. [ youtube ]

Next, choose the one service that you provide that you would absolutely love to have more customers calling about.  If you have several services, think of a word that sums all of them up.  Next, your tagline.   If you don’t have a GREAT tagline then don’t us one on your wrap.  Tag lines like “one call does it all” and “for all your plumbing needs”  are not original and are a distraction.

Lastly you need one way for potential clients to get in contact with you.  This should be your phone number or website.  You should not have multiple phone numbers on your vehicle wrap.  If you have more than one phone number and location then you should promote your website where potential clients can find the location they need.   If you want people to contact you through your website the web address needs to be the same as your business name.  You will lose potential clients if your business name is ABC Air Conditioning and your website is coldasiceair. com.  Imagine a wrap with a company name, a different name for the website, 2 taglines, 2 phone numbers and lots of different services.  Plus a bunch of logos

A lot of air conditioning contractors will receive some advertising dollars from major manufacturers in return for plastering their vehicle with their logo.  This is a terrible idea.  You are diluting your brand and drastically reducing the effectiveness of your wrap by doing this.  Leave all of your suppliers logos off your wrap.  The little bit of money they may throw your way is hardly worth the loss of even one potential client, given the amount of money they might spend as a lifetime customer

If you want a really great example of the kind of restraint and discipline I’m talking about take a look at Google’s homepage.  Take a look at the login pages of Facebook or any other social media site.  There’s an image, and you can login or create an account.  That’s it.  Transfer that to a vehicle wrap and you have:  A logo and a graphic image which lets potential clients know you’re a real and reputable company, what you do and what your company is about.  And you have an option or two to connect, a phone number or a website.  That’s it.  If you want your vehicle wrap to be effective at creating brand awareness and cause people to contact you as a business owner you need to resist the overwhelming urge to put bullet points or a list of your services and multiple tag lines on your wrap.

Remember, your vehicle is a moving billboard.  Not a moving brochure and not a moving website.

 

Tim Hilcove
Google

28Feb

Fleet Clients Special Projects | Tow Meter

SmartWrap specializes in vehicle wrap and graphic designs for full size vehicles.  99% of what we do every day involves a full size car, pick up truck, van or bus.  We do not wrap motorcycles, ATV’s, UTV’s, Jet Ski’s and other smaller items because of the huge opportunity cost involved.  Meaning, that in order to wrap a smaller item we would have to stop doing the large jobs and therefore the costs involved would be astronomical.

There is one exception to this rule:  Our fleet clients.  One of the many benefits of doing business with SmartWrap as a fleet client is getting your smaller, more unusual pet projects taken care of.

This Kawasaki Mule turned “Tow Meter” is a special project for a very special fleet client.  To inquire about becoming a fleet client please use the contact form at the bottom of the page

Tow-Meter-2 Tow-Meter-3 Tow-Meter-5 Tow-Meter-6 Tow-Meter[gravityform id=”4″ name=”Fleet Client Contact”]

Tim Hilcove
Google

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