Picture Decals

Written by Nicholas Kamuda
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Vehicle-borne advertising has come a long way since the days of simple, self-adhesive picture decals. Modern printing and adhesive techniques allow advertisers and graphics shops the freedom to design over the entire vehicle, incorporating the vehicles size and shape into the advertisement. This creates eye-catching, functional, instantly memorable images in the minds of commuters and pedestrians.

These new advertising picture decals are collectively referred to as vehicle wraps. The wraps are printed on large, thin, slightly stretchable sheets of vinyl and applied over the entire vehicle, occasionally including the windows. In many cases, since the wrap graphic is specially designed for the form of the car, it requires customized design from the ground up.

Vinyl Picture Decals vs. Wrapping

Normal, adhesive vinyl decals are still a booming business. Among other demographics, the custom car market has contributed to the popularity of picture decals, as drivers often wish to customize the look of their cars beyond simply the paint job. Small businesses and fleets also use vinyl decals liberally, as they offer a cost-effective and straightforward alternative to wrapping.

For larger applications, however, and large-scale advertising campaigns, vehicle wrapping is quickly becoming one of the most popular forms of outdoor advertising. One of the strengths of the technology is that it can be applied to any vehicle, from the small Volkswagen Beetle (popular with hip companies) to city buses and even light rail. Wrapping reaches a much larger audience that other comparable forms of advertising, such as billboards, and also enables the vehicles to promote brand awareness during specific promotions such as coupon or sample distribution.

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