Now that you have your Specialty Vehicle ordered; it’s time to start thinking about your exterior graphic design. Don’t put this off until the vehicle is almost complete. The exterior graphic design process can take months to complete, so start now!

The size of the Specialty Vehicle makes for a great marketing or advertising space that will be seen by many people. It’s a big moving billboard, so take advantage of all the space this vehicle has to offer.

1. Gather Information:

If you have a logo, you will want to display it prominently. Because the vehicle is so large, the logo will need to be in high resolution. Do you want to include your website, phone number, services, or any other information that applies to your company? If so, decide where you want it and how many times you want it repeated in the design. Do you want to carry on your program’s marketing theme? Some customers prefer to keep a consistent look to that of their fixed sites.

If you have donors, or grant providers that funded the vehicle, do you want to acknowledge them? If so, you will need to determine where in the design they will be positioned. Keep in mind that your donors may want their input on the overall graphic design for the vehicle. Having multiple agencies decide on one graphic layout can be time consuming so make sure you start early. It is highly recommended that the various agencies meet to review all requirements. Other items to gather include: color theme (pantone codes) requirements, pictures, art, a message, slogan and/or tag line.

2. Get Inspired:

This is a great opportunity to showcase your company! Look around at other Specialty Vehicles, or search the web to get inspired. What look do you prefer? Some customers prefer to design a kid friendly graphic layout that is animated and includes characters. Other customers prefer a more professional look with stock photography. The age group you will service has a huge determining factor in the type of design you will implement.

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3. Select the graphic package that meets your budget and requirements:mobile graphics example 4 2

Universal Specialty Vehicles, Inc. offers a few different design packages. Our basic “Silver” package includes large area coverage, basic design, and high performance 3M cut vinyl.

mobile graphics example 5 2Our “Gold” package includes a large format design, high performance 3M cut vinyl with an option of combining full color 3M UV laminate vinyl graphics.


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Our “Platinum” package includes a large format custom design. This can be done by using a full color wrap, or a wrap and paint combination.

Specialty 3M vinyl is used to give a unique look or quality to the finished product.

4. Decide if you need a graphic designer:

Universal Specialty Vehicles, Inc. can assist you with some initial designs, but if you need more graphic design assistance and have a marketing theme, then I suggest hiring a graphic designer. I recommend you find someone with experience with large vehicle design. The graphic designer will develop a concept for you, and work closely with USV and our graphic vendor to install the final design.

5. Finalize the design:

Now that you finally have the design you love; the designer will need to provide USV with the graphic files. There are numerous ways to submit your files. Typically, we prefer to receive files via Dropbox or a similar form of third party file sharing system. Our graphic vendor prefers to work with large high resolution files to make the installed design look sharp and clean. Low resolution files tend to show up blurry and pixelated when blown up for print/installation.

After we receive the graphic files, our graphic vendor will apply the design to actual pictures of your vehicle. (both sides, and front and rear views) The design template will be emailed to you for your approval. In addition, an actual full color print will be sent to you to make sure all the colors meet with your satisfaction. If you are not sure about your pantone color requirements, our graphics vendor can match colors both on vinyl print and paint. We work hand in hand with our customers to make sure the correct color scheme and design is installed on their new Specialty Vehicle. After you give us final approval, the vehicle will be sent to our graphic company for the installation. Depending on the type of design being installed, the installation can take up to two weeks.

Wow, that was a process! A vehicle graphic design project can be challenging, but the outcome is extremely rewarding. Just imagine your design on a big, moving, high profile Specialty Vehicle.