Graphic, colorful wide-format print rages on urban and suburban streets and highways, screaming past at 35, 45, 55+ miles per hour. You can pimp your ride and have your rims, but what your customers' commercial passenger vehicles really may need is some vinyl—of the vibrantly printed variety. If...
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Graphic, colorful wide-format print rages on urban and suburban streets and highways, screaming past at 35, 45, 55+ miles per hour. You can pimp your ride and have your rims, but what your customers' commercial passenger vehicles really may need is some vinyl—of the vibrantly printed variety. If it's bling they want on their cars, trucks, buses, vans, RVs, and/or trailers, today there are chrome-simulated options. Specialty media include Avery Dennison's new Conform Chrome, an accent film that was applied at the ISA International Sign Expo 2012 and began shipping on March 30. Similarly, Metro Chrome Mirror Vinyl films from online supplier Metro Restyling are designed to give a brilliant, chrome-polished, finished look; plus they feature an outdoor rating of up to five years. 3M Scotchprint 1080 vinyl car wraps are available in aluminum, metal, and brushed metal finishes, depending on the desired look and branding.
These days, it is not that difficult or costly to compete in the custom, decked-out car-wrap game. Lower printer pricing has broken down entry barriers, making wrap production less cost-prohibitive than in the past. If a print firm has or invests in a large-format solvent printer, it can do short runs of vehicle wraps, explained Gary Schellerer, Sr. His Signs By Tomorrow retail shop in Bloomingdale, IL, 20 miles west of Chicago, has been designing, printing, and installing wraps for about a decade. The mobile graphics revenue stream accounted for more than 20 percent of his firm's 2011 sales of around $4 million, he said. Printing is the easy part, according to Schellerer. Design and application, on the other hand, can be quite challenging.
Creative marketers were deploying print on wheels long before 4G network-empowered mobile phones got so "smart." (Wraps can be found on pedicabs in Boston and floating on boats in the harbor.) Numerous studies rank mobile advertising as the most cost-effective and efficient form of major media, reaching more consumers at the absolute lowest cost per thousand (CPM) impressions—at well under $1.00 per thousand. In high-traffic areas, mobile is less than one-fourth the expense of billboards. An ad client might pay as much as $45,000 for a billboard on say, California's Santa Monica (405) Freeway, but a truck with a wrap costs maybe $10,000 for the same time span, according to the Traffic Audit Bureau (TAB) for Media Measurement. By comparison, average CPM impressions for other media are around $3.50 for billboards; $5.00 for a 30-second radio spot; $20.00 for a 30-second TV spot; and $27.00 for a full-page, color magazine ad. (Source: Truck Ads) As most printers are aware, CPM for static direct mail can approach ten times those figures, exceeding $200 per thousand impressions.
Power to Impress
Statistics show that eight of 10 Americans walk in a town, city, or downtown area an average of six miles per week. (See "Pimp My Print") Pedestrian and automotive traffic represents a significant reach opportunity for advertisers. TAB reported that vehicle advertising can generate from 30,000 to 70,000 sightings per day, while an Arbitron Outdoor Study stated that an intra-city truck with graphics can generate as many as 16 million visual impressions annually. Separate research, conducted by 3M Commercial Graphics on behalf of Cadbury-Schweppes' Snapple brand, used GPS units to track 10 trucks through two major metropolitan areas, including San Francisco. These fleet graphics generated the equivalent average of six million Prime Daily Effective Circulation per truck (annualized). That's what wrapping printers call getting extra bang for your 4+ bucks per gallon of gasoline this summer.
Mobile printed graphics also are an extremely influential ad medium. More than nine out of 10 people notice words and pictures when displayed on 40×12-foot trucks, reported the American Trucking Association. Research conducted by agency RYP & Becker Group found that 97 percent of survey respondents recalled the ad on a truck; 98 percent thought the ads created a positive image of the advertiser; and 96 percent thought fleet graphics had more impact than printed or electronic billboards.