That’s a wrap

Vehicle wrap companies such as Smartwrap OK and Monster Graphx say more people are catching on to the idea of creating a personal advertising campaign at a fraction of the cost.

Guerilla marketing: That’s what Landon Ramm, co-founder of Monster Graphx in Edmond, calls vehicle wraps.

The former Fastsigns franchisee decided to specialize in vehicle wraps five years ago when he and partner Darren Gossett opened shop at 701 S. Kelley.

“There are endless things you can do with it as far as budget,” Ramm says. “You don’t have to do a full wrap; you can do a partial or a quarter.”

A full-size van wrap runs around $3,000, but smaller graphics can be as little as a few hundred.

“It’s a mobile billboard,” he says. Monster’s clients run the gamut from single-owner, lawn-care services to companies that wrap entire fleets.

The startup Smartwrap OK has wrapped vehicles for nutrition companies, excavating operations, roofing firms and a remodeler.

JD Merryweather, co-founder of COOP Ale Works, says a vehicle wrap worked perfectly through a reciprocal marketing agreement he has with Fowler Volkswagen.

Fowler provided the wrapped COOPmobile, and Merryweather uses it to pull the company’s trailer to cycling, running and other events. It promotes both companies.

“It just stemmed from a conversation about traditional marketing being dead,” Merryweather says.

He says locals soon will see wrapped, themed VW vehicles, each promoting COOP’s six brews.

Josh Close, sales manager for Smartwrap OK, the company his mother, Kathleen, owns, says he wrapped his mother’s SUV, which advertises her new GPS rental business, myspousecheats.com, and saw instant results.

Kathleen
Close says the wrap, promoting GPS rental units to track cheating
spouses, has resulted in several phone calls and satisfied customers.

“[One customer] caught her husband cheating less than 24 hours after renting the GPS,” she says.

Realtor Micah Mruwat was happy with the results of having her vehicle wrapped.

“Seems like it has created a buzz,” Mruwat says.

And that’s the idea. In today’s world of instant information and social media, the point of advertising is to create activity.

That’s
one reason Mruwat made sure she included a QR code on the back of her
Escalade. So even when she’s at a stoplight, her business still can be
in front of potential customers.

“I’ve
been doing new branding and a new website center on social media,” she
says. “I just thought my car would be a good way to advertise it.”

There
was a hiccup in the early going, Mruwat says: The initial wrap wasn’t
installed properly, and her phone number came out crooked.

But once that was fixed, all she had to do was avoid car washes with lots of brushes, and she’ll be fine for the next few years.

Josh
Close says he and his mother spent more than two years researching the
ins and outs of the wrap business. A trip to a 3M convention in Las
Vegas sold them on the idea even more.

“We wanted to cover it A to Z: How to market it, what was the profit margin, and how big of a shop we would need,” he says.

Mruwat says she doesn’t really have a clear expectation of what her business will get out of having her vehicle wrapped.

“At least it will remind people in my neighborhood or places I go of what I do, without having to throw it in their face.”

Well, sort of.

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