Professional Pest Controller Magazine Issue 90

27 February 2018

Branding your pest control van

Feature promotion | PPC90 March 2018

Marketing and Communications Manager, Ben Massey, looks at the top tips for using your pest control van as a canvas for marketing and promoting your business.

Look at that Van Gogh

Speed read
  • Keep info to a minimum – company name, logo, phone and website
  • Wraps are best for complex or high impact designs
  • Repetition is recognition, you may be seen a lot in a given area. Keep branding consistent with everything else (website, print etc)

You don't have to be a French impressionist painter to have a beautiful looking work vehicle. Whether you’re looking at getting a couple of vinyl stickers or you’re going all out on a van wrap, choosing your vehicle’s livery is a big decision.

Not all tradespeople like to have their vans branded, and this can be of particular concern for pest management companies, especially if you have some clients that feel uncomfortable with a pest control van parked next to their premises.

That being said, according to the 3M study on the power of vehicle advertising, up to 3,000 people an hour could see your van, making it an incredibly useful advertising platform for your business. Can you afford not to be seen by all these people every day?

More than this, your van is your first impression. A professionally branded pest control van tells clients you’ve arrived and you mean business. If done right, a good looking vehicle can inspire trust, loyalty and create that perceived point of difference between you and your competitors. Just think how comforting it is when you see a bright red Royal Mail van parked on your road, or even the warm glow you get spotting an Eddie Stobart truck on the road (although, maybe that’s just me).

If you decide that vehicle branding is right for you, then you must be incredibly cautious of what you put on your van. As with any marketing material, you must be careful that your branding is saying what you want it to – ie you’re a professional tradesperson to be taken seriously and that you can command a fee that reflects your professionalism. A massive, cartoon mouse caught in a snapback trap might not give the impression you were hoping for.

Beautiful pest control vans

Signwriting or wraps

To begin, you need to choose what sort of branding you’re going to go for, as this will impact what you can or can’t do with your company van.

Signwriting isn’t just getting a bucket of paint and a brush from B&Q. Modern signwriting is more often than not achieved with stencilled adhesive vinyl lettering. You usually pick a couple of key places on your vehicles, such as the bonnet, doors or the side of your van and then get a graphic in a pre-defined sized made up.

Depending on the size of your van, the number of colours you want, and any design work you commission, you can expect to pay between £150-600 to get one van signwritten.

Obviously, the principal drawback is there’s only so much you can do to stand out from the crowd, but at least you can get some key information up on your van. These graphics can help add a professional feel to an otherwise brandless van.

A vehicle wrap is basically a large vinyl graphic that covers your whole vehicle, directly over the original paint.

Again, depending on the size of your van, quality of finish, design (and potentially installation) costs, expect to pay anything from £1,500-3,000. You can go for a partial wrap for a more modest fee, but you will lose the overall effect of having the whole vehicle branded.

A wrap is better for complex or high impact signs. It’s the best way to get a professional, sharp looking finished product.

Keep the design simple As with most design decisions, a beautiful simple design looks better than a poorly executed complicated design.

Keep the information on your van to a minimum. Your company name, logo, BPCA member logo, phone number and website is probably plenty. Writing all your many services down the side and lots of different slogans can make your van look busy and cluttered. How much of your van is someone likely to read?

Repetition is recognition, and if you work in a particular area, you’re going to be seen a lot. Keep your basic branding consistent with everything else you produce, eg website and print materials.

Take inspiration from other vehicles you’ve seen and like, then sit down with a professional designer. While business cards might be flat, your vehicle is not. Unless you’re doing a simple vinyl sticker for a flat section of your van, we recommend you find a professional to do your design work for your wrap. Every curve, bump and panel gap needs to be taken into consideration. Get it wrong, and you’ll end up with a shoddy looking van that hurts yours and your customer’s eyes.

Installing and applying your livery

You can install simple vinyl stickers yourself. A couple of logos, contact details and company name won’t take you long at all. Just make sure that you don’t apply any of the stickers in any of the creases or panel gaps of the vehicle.

If you go for a wrap, your van will potentially be out of action for a couple of days for the actual installation, so you’ll have to work out a time when you can be without your workhorse. But then again, good things take time.


Why not enter the PPC Live Van of the Year? All you need to do is bring yourself and your van to PPC Live 2018.Email us for more details.

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Ben-Massey-Staff-bubbleBen Massey
Marketing and Communications Manager

1 March 2018  |  PPC90

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