Whatever the consideration advertisement will always be expensive – be it on print media, billboards or even flyers. The traditional form of advertisement continues to be relevant even with the cost. However, a shift in preference is noticeable as several mediums had seen rapid rise in popularity. One of which is car decal stickers found cheap, effective and a reliable advertising option.
Car decal stickers are mobile advertisements literally taped over cars and vehicles. This is vehicle graphics a form of advertisement started on delivery vans, on public transport like buses, monorail, and train coaches. Manual painting was the earliest form of vehicle graphics. With the coming of new technology, printers and special media found practical application.
Car Decal Printing Business Overview
Car decal printing is the fastest growing segment of the car aesthetics industry. Since more and more business organizations had realized the potential of mobile advertisement, turning their vehicles into mobile billboards effectively get the message across about products and services. Some organizations rely on (1) spot graphics, (2) others allow partial vehicle wrap or (3) even full vehicle wraps.
The Industry: Recent innovation in technology had not only improved wrap printing but lowered the cost as well. It pertains to the advances made on the large format printers, the media materials and ink. This and some other breakthroughs allowed the car decal printing industry to thrive.
Basically, vehicle graphics is the application of a vinyl sticker to a vehicle. It can be as small as a decal or as large as a full wrap. In a full wrap the vehicle is entirely covered with vinyl, of course with the exception of the windshield and the front windows for legal reasons.
The target market: Vehicle graphics really work, it has unsurpassed value. The primary reason behind vehicle graphics popularity is recognition and visibility. When used in public vehicles like ambulances and fire trucks, the public can easily recognize them in emergencies. With vehicle graphics, persons waiting in sheds can easily recognize incoming buses that take their routes. In business, properly designed vehicle graphics allow people instant recall of products and services. It offers impressive results and awe customers at how fast their business had been noticed.
The vehicle graphics industry has quadrupled in popularity as shown by the many technicians offering support and services. It is now convenient for businesses to hire technicians and do the graphics on their vehicles. Not just vehicles, because the same set-up found its way into walls, trashcans, and elevators. You name it. The application for this service has become unlimited.
Car vinyl decal printing process: To start, a special printer is used to copy and cut designs/decals out. The material of choice is vinyl or mylar if intended for race cars. Special paper can also be used just like contact paper or bumper sticker. Installation for this kind is hard because of the air bubbles that could likely develop under it. Besides bumper sticker for inkjets is not waterproof, a clear vinyl finish has to be sprayed over so the decal can last longer.
Two types of vinyl are used in vehicle graphics. One is cast vinyl manufactured not to stretch, shrink or deform once installed. The other type is calendared vinyl popular for sign shops. This type is best installed on flat surfaces. It is very much cheaper compared to cast vinyl.
Cast vinyl is the choice for vehicle graphics because it has properties that can be made to conform to the shape of the vehicle. Cast vinyl is also easier to install and remove without damaging the car paint.
Vinyl for vehicle graphics has adhesive backing on the underside, to ease installation over the body of the vehicle. It is stretched and laid over contours and crevices of the body of the car. A squeegee and a heat gun are used during the installation. The installation must be perfectly done for vinyl to appear like it was sprayed on.
Wide format printers are usually used to print on cast vinyl. This printer use rolls of print materials instead of individual sheets. Some types are built with hot-air dryers to allow instantaneous drying during printing reducing the risk of prints sticking together. Although for home office use, specially designed small inkjet printers can also be relied upon.
Difference between decal and sticker: According to the dictionary, a decal is €œa design prepared on special paper for transfer into another surface such as glass, porcelain or metal.€ Other than that if it does not fall under the definition is a sticker or a label. Besides most decals are devised for outdoor use, so it never fades, deform or twist and last so much longer.
Decals and sticker printing for cars is a new and robust industry. No DIY (do it yourself) printer is yet available for this application, unless the job is small. For large decal application, they are better handled by commercial printers.
Remember when your business is operating on a tight string budget, the use of the traditional form of advertisement is not advisable. Try instead mobile advertisement, easy to handle and install cheap, effective and probably your most reliable advertising option.