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With the Advertising market constantly changing and refreshing it pays to keep up to date with trends.
These trends when combined with published data can be a guide to effective methods and tools that small business can harness to help build Brand impact and to connect to as many prospective clients as possible.

Sure there are plenty of ways to spend your advertising dollar online and through other platforms but where to start?
For a bit of background knowledge last year in Australia the spend on traditional print advertising (newspapers & Magazines) was down slightly, whilst this softening has been happening over recent years this type of Media still works very well for certain advertisers and overall the spend in this area is still strong.

One of the area’s that growth has been coming from is “Out of Home” (OOH)  advertising platforms. The OOH segment was around 7% up last year- to approximately 1 Billion dollars (AU)
So what exactly is “Out of Home” advertising?

OHH Advertising covers advertising that is found outside a consumers home. The interest in this area has been consistently strong and generally covers platforms like Billboards, public spaces, and transit areas like Buses, trams and transport. With the market being hot even new Phone booths are springing up in the major cities, one would expect that its not just so consumers can make more calls but so the owners can sell advertising space on them!

The data in this area is showing healthy return on investment as the results are showing that by taking the message out to meet the public there is an effective cut through to the consumer.

So can small business use this knowledge to their own advantage?
Well, yes.
One way is through MOBILE BILLBOARD ADVERTISING. This little Gem works out to be one of the most cost effective forms of OOH Advertising there is.
The returns are calculated by taking the initial cost of Vehicle Signage divided by the amount of consumer views or “impressions” of the brand – costing as little as $4.00 per day  (the same as buying a cup of Coffee!).

TAKE YOUR BRAND TO THE STREET – using a vehicle as a mobile billboard – brand awareness and company recognition are the result. Heading out to where prospective buyers can see your Brand works especially well.
Whilst your are delivering stock, heading to meetings or appointments your Branded Vehicle supports you.
It can also have great impact at your locality in which you live and shop.

Your mobile billboard is hard at work for you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Thousands of views a day if you are mobile – this combined with an average 3-5 year lease becomes very attractive. The cost of the lease is already being allocated within the business – why not make the Vehicle help pay for itself?

Sounds too good? Well, read on to get more information on Vehicle Graphics with our 10 point guide.


1). What Design should we use?
Depending on Budget, layouts can vary greatly. Do your research, save images of things you like , or just ask – your Signwriter will assist.
Layouts with a clear message work best. Tests have shown on average the reader will only have 2.5 Seconds to read the message (unless they are stuck in traffic behind you!).
This means keep the contact details to a minimum for example you can usually get away with just a Web address and maybe a phone number. Once your brand is seen most people will just google your name anyway.
Savings can be made by using less film in a layout – but can that still be effective?
Yes – one tip is to use the colour of the Vehicle in the design. This clever choice not only saves money by using less film but if designed well can have just as much impact as a full wrap!
Also its worth noting that using photos in a wrap can sometimes lessen the overall design impact.

2). How long will a wrap last?
Depending on film placement somewhere between 3-5 years of serviceable life.
Why should placement change anything? Generally film placed on a Bonnet or roof will deteriorate faster as these areas get more Sun and general weathering. Some films will show signs of fading and degradation in about 2-3 years, but usually film applied to vertical surfaces will last longer. Most installs will last a lot longer than this but these expectations point to optimum life.
This is why quality High performance films work best, brands like Avery and 3M have quite well known quality films, but others like Arlon, Hexis and Orocal have great products in this market as well.

3). Will my new Wrap damage the paint?
NO – usually OEM paint (original from factory) will not be damaged – in fact the paint under the film will to a certain extent will be protected.
If there is any noticeable ghosting left on duco – (sometimes where text was on a door) this is usually removed by a cut and polish.

4). How much will it cost?
Basically the more film you put on the vehicle the more it will cost. Simple but effective door signs can be around $100 per door – up to a full wrap on say a Hiace Van could set you back $4 – 5K.
There will be Artwork costs in your quote – good things do take time. Money spent in this area will benefit you in the long run.
Be organised and get any copies of your logos and Artwork together with colours ready to hand onto your Signwriter. Sometimes even previous Art approval emails from suppliers of your business cards will be helpful.  
5). Will a deposit be required?
Yes  – generally a deposit will be required upon booking.

6). How long does it take to install a Wrap?
 Full Wraps are labour intensive but should be completed within 1-2 working days whereas smaller door signs can be whilst you wait.
Other critical things which can effect the time the vehicle is off the road is how clean it is upon delivery (don’t wash it on the way to getting a wrap!) Wash it in the days prior. Wet cars cannot be wrapped until dry!
Wrappers may also disassemble some components, like door handles and taillights – this all takes time.
For removal – it is usually quite straight forward – but speak to your supplier.

7). How do I choose the right Sign shop?
Go and visit the company, ask for photos of previous work, ask around for recommendations.
Does the Signage need to be installed at the Wrappers workshop? Generally YES – Wrappers usually have a controlled environment where their work is completed.
Things like temperature , Wet or Dirty environments, dust, wind need to be controlled to obtain best results.

8). Does the vehicle paint need to be in good condition?
YES Paint needs to be smooth and have gloss to get the best adhesion for film – factory finish Duco is the best. Undercoated vehicles can work but are risky.

9). Will the wrap hide dints or panel damage?
NO – In fact film installed over damage usually will highlight any dints or scratches. GET IT FIXED FIRST! 

10). What happens if our Wrapped Vehicle is involved in an accident?
Your Signwriter will work with your panel beater to organise replacement graphics. (though it Prob pays to inform your insurance company of your vehicle signage in the first place).
If you have any queries, or if I can help further please drop me a line @

About the Author – Craig Farquharson is nearing 40 year’s in the Industry. Starting off Screenprinting OEM Automotive decals for manufacturers like Holden and Nissan – and decals for the Defence force. He worked at Spandex Asia Pacific (one of the worlds biggest film supplier’s ) for nearly 10 years in Manufacturing, Sales and marketing – He has run and assisted in running many Wrap workshops and Trade events in Melbourne and Sydney for major Signage film distributors and Manufacturers.
Since the late 90’s he has his own company EXO Signs and graphics.
A company that was setup primarily to service the Fleet application and retail market.