When done right, an ad placement made through a vehicle wrap can be a powerful means to promote your business to a wider market. Creatively executed wraps not only help build brand identity and establish a positive image, it also helps generate buzz that could end up going viral on social media. However, getting a vehicle wrap done can be tricky. Here are 5 do’s and don’ts of an effective vehicle wrap design.
- Do see the vehicle first before making a digital template.
Sure, cars have a general design and most wraps are based on a template based on your specific model, anyway. However, it’s still smarter to first have a look at the actual car and note kinks and irregularities first before printing the design. A template only has the general information about the vehicle but it will not alert you of any possible problems that might make the installation process difficult. Pay particularly close attention to customizations, protrusions, body breaks, rivets and other parts that may have been altered from the stock model.
Take photos of the car first and note key measurements of all sides, and then scale the photos accordingly on the software. Take direct shots. There’s no room for angling here because you need to come up with an exact match when you finally get to print. Photos are crucial when designing and quoting for a vehicle wrap. It also lets your client know beforehand what you can and cannot do for the vehicle so all expectations are ironed out before the project start.
- Do know your client.
Vehicle wrapping is a creative endeavor as much as it is a business decision. Thus, it is your duty as the designer to understand what the client’s branding is all about and to ask about his or her vision for the design before you get cracking. More likely, the client will present some designs they’ve seen and like, so you have a benchmark from where yours can take off. Bring all of this information in a brief or a job summary to make sure you and the customer have agreed on what you will do before you begin.
- Do communicate with your customer.
Some vehicle wrap jobs fall apart because the finished product is far from what the client has imagined in his or her head. As the designer, it is very important to create a mock-up of your design. While it’s very exciting to start designing right away, remember that some wrap jobs carry a brand with them. Communicate with your client and find out exactly what he or she wants out of the design. Create a draft of your concepts and the show these to your client first for any modifications.
- Do place your client’s brand and company message at the core of your design.
Remember that the client wants his or her vehicle wrapped because he or she wants to advertise a product or service. Make sure that the design does just that. Vehicles move, so it takes only a few seconds for fellow drivers and passers-by to view and digest the design. Make the brand and message instantly recognizable, readable and memorable. You will want to create a vehicle wrap that people will continue talking about for weeks or months. Better yet, a wrap that people will want to take pictures of to show off to friends online.
- Don’t overcrowd the vehicle.
It’s tempting to put all of the client’s services on the vehicle, but that’s not what wrapping is all about. The real goal is to get people curious enough to want to look for the brand and find out more. The ad should have the basics, of course, such as the company name, logo, phone number or website URL, social media handle or slogan. Overcrowding the design with too much information defeats the purpose of a good design.
In addition, because it’s a mobile space, you can’t really expect people to take all of the information within just a few seconds. Worse, an overcrowded ad might create a wrong first impression on your client’s target market, making them look messy and all-over-the-place.