Signs of the Times - April 2014 - (Page 20)

V in y l A pp s By Sergio DeSoto Avoiding Landmines Sergio summarizes many shops' common mistakes. P eople unfamiliar with the vehicle-wrap market might think designing, producing and installing a wrap is as simple as uploading customer-supplied graphics into Adobe® software, pushing a few buttons on a printer, collecting the output, slapping it on, cutting off the excess and bam, you're done. Well, for some in the industry, unfortunately, it is that simple: the lowball, bottom-feeder shops that promise cheap jobs, and make good on their word - and give those of us serious about our work a bad name. Murphy's Law applies to vehicle-wrap shops as much, if not more, than any other profession. If you don't consistently monitor every phase of your wrap processes, anything that can go wrong, will. Sales and estimating The vehicle-wrap sales process is quite simple, really: Identify companies that use vehicles as part of their job - building contractors, plumbers, etc. - and market your services to them. Keep in touch with existing customers to see if opportunities exist to wrap a larger fleet. Consider how many work vans or box trucks are still decorated with deteriorating or sloppy, handcut vinyl. Each one represents an opportunity; jot down whatever contact information you can still read on the vehicle, and follow up. Sales should be separated from design functions. Often, a salesperson will delve into the details of a wrap's content or purpose, but not understand the design and production steps needed to make a wrap effective. For instance, he may promise to fulfill the client's wish for a textheavy design that will create poor legibility. Disconnects like this create confusion and delay approvals. A salesperson should enhance the project by providing an accurate This food truck plies its trade in the Minneapolis area during spring and summer, and offers such fare as crab cakes Benedict and bread pudding French toast. The owner hired Creative Color (Burnsville, MN) to create a visual wake-up that matches its cuisine. Creative Color co-owner Brent Luther designed the wrap with Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop software, and printed it on a Mimaki JV33 solvent-ink machine with 3M Controltac IJ180Cv3-10 air-release vinyl, and installers Blaine Erickson, Steve Herrig and Kyle Willemssen applied it with 3M Gold and Wrap Guys squeegees, and Milwaukee Tool heat guns. 20 SIGNS OF THE TIMES April 2014 Sergio DeSoto developed The Bad Wrap vehicle-wrap template, has served as a wrap-shop consultant, and currently owns The Dezynery, a Phoenix-based, wholesale, vehiclewrap provider. quote and promptly collecting such assets as logos, vehicle photos and proper measurements for the creative team, which allows them to move efficiently. Also, a salesperson should manage expectations from the beginning about turnaround time, the approval process and ROI. Estimating is complex; it should represent more than just a vehicle's square footage as it appears on a screen or sheet of paper. Unless you're wrapping the rear of a box truck, the vehicle wrap's square footage will often vary by several feet. Account for mistakes in your estimates; build into the cost the chance that you'll have to eat a panel or two, while taking the time to ensure a quality finished product. Many shops estimate by simply multiplying the cost of goods sold. It sounds easy, but don't do it. You have overhead, insurance, payroll and other expenses. Even if your competitor sells on a simple formula,

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Signs of the Times - April 2014

Signs of the Times - April 2014
Columns & Departments
ST Update
Technology Update
ISA Sign Expo 2014 – Making the most of it
Vinyl Apps
Strictly Electric
LED Update
Software Update
Technology Review: Roland’s SOLJET Pro 4 XF-640 printer
Technology Review: EFI’s VUTEk GS2000/3250 digital-hybrid printers
Sign Museum News
New Products
The 2014 Intl. Sign Contest
2nd Annual Readers’ Choice Award
For the Record
ISA Expo Adds SEGD Component
Surprising Evidence about Neon’s History
Editorially speaking
Advertising index

Signs of the Times - April 2014