Design Tips for Bus Wraps

Design Tips for Bus Wraps

APRIL 22, 2020| SpeedPro


Vehicle Graphics

Plastering your business name and image across the side of a bus can offer more than just a unique advertising medium. It also provides impressive levels of exposure, reaching as many as 30,000 to 70,000 impressions a day. Plus, it has one of the highest returns on investment (ROI) of any advertising type. Bus wraps and other vehicle business wraps are an excellent way to get your logo in front of more people.

Fleet wrap graphics are affordable and can be applied to a wide variety of vehicle types. When designing a wrap for a bus or other vehicle, you’ll have to keep a few unique characteristics in mind. Making a design for a moving vehicle is significantly different than designing a sign or a website. Here are some of our tips and tricks for making these unique wraps.

Tips for Designing Custom Vehicle Wraps

Whatever your work entails, creating vehicle business wraps can earn you a leg up in the advertising game. Bus wraps are an especially great place for marketing efforts due to their large design real estate. Here are some of our best tips for how to create an eye-catching bus wrap. Many of these apply to business car wraps as well.

1. Know Your Vehicle

Before starting any design process, look closely at the bus you’ll be covering. Take exact measurements and direct photos — that means no angles. Areas to measure include the:

  • Sides
  • Hood
  • Rear door
  • Bumpers

Don’t rely on general measurements from the manufacturer or another source. These numbers won’t always reflect the actual size of the individual vehicle and any modifications that the owner or previous owner may have had done. Maybe the bus has a new bumper or door style that is ever-so-slightly different from the manufacturer’s specifications. This modification can easily influence the finished result and could cost time and money to fix.

2. Use Bold Designs

Wrapping an entire bus is not the time to play it safe. Use bold graphics and large, legible text that passersby can read in an instant. Don’t overlook the value of negative space, and remember to use your most striking designs.

There are millions of cars on the road, so how do you get your vehicle to stand out? Well, if you’re working with a bus, that helps. A bus gives you much more design real estate, so don’t be afraid to use it. Stick with bold designs that grab your audience’s attention.

3. Use Bright Colors

In a similar vein, stick with bright colors. Again, you need to make your wrap pop. Subdued colors may blend into the background or get lost in the sea of cars. Using bright, high-contrast colors is an excellent way to get your bus to stick in someone’s mind. Plus, it makes your wrap more visible in low-visibility weather, so viewers can still get your message during a rainy day.

4. Go Big or Go Home

A bus is already large, so you need a design to match. People can see the vehicle from quite a distance, so they need to be able to read whatever you put on it. Use large text sizes and ensure it is legible.

If you’re going to use an image, remember that it needs to be from an incredibly high-quality photo. Without a high-quality picture, you run the risk of a pixelated or distorted wrap. No one wants the disappointment of seeing a completed wrap with a blurry mascot or spokesperson. If you’re unsure about the quality of your image, reach out to us. We can help you identify quality requirements for a SpeedPro vehicle wrap.

5. Match the Market

Even though it may be a new medium, your brand identity is still one of the most vital parts of your wrap. For many businesses, brand awareness is the sole purpose of vehicle wraps. Ensure that your design follows any messaging and marketing guidelines and uses your brand’s image to its full potential.

A bus is like a mobile billboard.

A bus wrap works a little bit like a billboard, except it’s mobile. It can reach different audiences based on its route and location, so keep that in mind when determining marketing goals. You may need to focus on various aspects based on the size of your business. For instance, a nationally recognized brand may be able to display a simplified logo and a catchy tagline, while a small business can’t do the same because viewers wouldn’t know their company. These smaller businesses would likely need to show their logo and name clearly, along with a website and phone number. Vehicle wrapping is an excellent step in improving brand recognition, so eventually, they, too, can play the minimalist game like the big national brands. It’s also friendlier to small businesses through its low cost per thousand impressions (CPM). Online advertising can cost up to $17.50 per thousand impressions, with magazines and broadcast even higher. Out-of-home advertising like vehicle wraps only cost $3.38 to $8.65 per thousand impressions. Wraps tend to be easy on the wallets of small and medium businesses.

6. Consider Your Angles

Since the vehicle is mobile and functional, it will frequently be seen from all angles and at different positions. Think about how the bus will look when it stops in traffic or when the doors are opened. Ask yourself questions like:

  • Will it make any unpleasant accidental messages when half of the image is covered, such as by an opened door or window?
  • Will the placement of vehicle features like lights or tires make any unintended effects on your images, such as covering up a face or an eye?
  • Will people be left wondering what your business even is if they only see one side of the bus?

Consider your vehicle from all angles and any other viewpoints that could affect the way that audiences perceive your final result.

7. Keep It Simple

It may be tempting to use that design real estate by packing in all sorts of information, but that could confuse audiences or ensure that they don’t retain any of it. Instead, opt for simplicity, with those bold and bright designs we mentioned.

  • Don’t overcrowd the design or get overly complicated.
  • Minimize copy and use large messaging where needed.

If your canvas is a bus, you get a little more room to play with than most vehicle wraps offer. Short lines of text that are to-the-point can get your message across without overwhelming people.

Remember that a bus operates like a billboard. People may only see it for short bursts of time, so you need to be direct and make your message memorable.

8. Follow the Law

Some states and counties have specific requirements for windows. You may not be allowed to have tinted, perforated or wrapped windows, and some mirror requirements could apply. Always check on this before you invest in a wrap that could earn you a ticket.

Quality Bus Wraps From SpeedPro

Once you’ve got a stellar design, let SpeedPro’s experts bring it to life. When you work with us, you work with a large nationwide network that has helped businesses across the country increase their exposure and brand recognition with the help of vibrant, high-quality vehicle wraps. You’ll get a variety of options, including full, partial and spot wraps, and a customized plan from one of our consultants.

A bus wrap offers a unique, sprawling landscape for your next advertisement, but it doesn’t stop there. You can also get wraps for cars, trucks and other vehicles and cover your whole fleet. For more information on custom vehicle wraps, find your nearest location, and contact your representative today.

Contact SpeedPro for Quality Bus Wraps

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