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Offering More Than Just ‘Full Color’

(June 2011) posted on Tue Jun 07, 2011

New wrap films offer new opportunities.

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By Jared Smith, president of bluemedia

I can remember a time in the 1990s where our focus was on subjects like: “Will this material have bubbles in it?” “Will it hold up to car washes?” “Will we be able to install it without wrinkles?” And, “Is this high-end vinyl really worth it?”

That was, by digital print standards, a very long time ago. Now, we all have our favorite wrap vinyl. We have profiles built to print great color. And our installers can wrap just about any shape a vehicle can throw at us. Yes, adding reflective was always a cool way to make a wrap stand out, but beyond that and brilliant design there really wasn’t much in the way of material options.

Until now, that is.

An entrée to the custom market
Now is a great time to be in the vehicle-wrap business. Many new materials are entering the marketplace that can challenge us all again. Importantly, I don’t mean “challenge us” when it comes to the actual production or installation. Rather, I mean challenge us in finding creative ways to enhance the final results and make for happier, more-likely-to-return customers.

Quite a few manufacturers have recently come to market with these specialty films. These films include a wide assortment of textured and colored vinyls previously not available for the vehicle-wrap market. And with some creative thinking and pre-planning, you can make some amazing looking vehicles using films like these.

I see these types of films serving two purposes in my company’s product lines. The first is a new market for us, one that we’re calling the “custom automotive market.”

In the past, we would shy away from a wrap job that was for a personal vehicle for a variety of reasons. These jobs seemed tough to make a profit on; the client was always a extra picky; and the final sale total was usually very little. In short, these jobs had a high risk and a low reward – not the kind of combination you’re looking for.

With the new films out there, however, we can now do a custom “paint” job that requires no printing and sometimes may not even require design. This is something that used to be unheard of in the vehicle-wrap market.