Many of us like our cars to be pristine. Unadorned with boot fair leaflets tucked under the windscreen wiper and free of parking tickets.
But if you’re keen to make a quick buck, having an advert splashed over your paintwork could bring in a tidy sum.
If you’re willing to have a slogan for a company pasted over your bonnet, your side doors or even wrapped all around your pride and joy, car advertising is one way you could make money from your car. Here’s what you need to know.
How do car advertising wraps work?
Advertising on to advertise on cars. Most of us use them to drive to the types of places the companies behind the slogans want to reach, be it a supermarket car park or just tootling along the high street.
Of course, there are some questions any car owner will want answering before agreeing to someone slapping a slogan around their bodywork. First, what’s the pay, and second, will there be any damage?
The first thing you need to know about car wraps or advertising posters is that they are temporary. They are applied on clean metal and can be peeled off when you are done with them.
The application is done at a professional garage and can take from 10 minutes to a whole day depending on the scale of the transfers being attached to your car.
Once your employment period is over the wrap can usually be peeled off at home, without any damage to the car.
Who pays for car advertisements?
Occasionally, a car advertising company will contact potential customers directly. Usually leaving their calling card through the front door, via email or even popping a leaflet under the windscreen.
However, in most cases it’ll be down to the motorist to source a company that is active in this market. This isn’t hard given that the active ones, by definition, are fairly visible.
What companies will pay to advertise on your car and how much can you get paid?
There is no shortage of firms who will pay to have their company logo or latest special deal plastered over your car, van or even motorcycle.
Note that payment will typically be made by BACS after completion of the contract term, which could be a month after the advertising is removed from the vehicle.
Alternatively, payment could be completed in stages, say 30 per cent of the total after one month, with the remainder paid after the second month of a two-month contract.
The process is simple. Drivers complete a form disclosing where they live, what car they drive, their lifestyle and their driving habits and the firm then marries them up with a suitable advertiser.
As for what you would be promoting, the range is wide. Recent campaigns have included everything from Burger King to Meatless Farm.
Be aware of car advertising cons
‘Caveat emptor’ is a common legal term, literally meaning ‘buyer beware’.
The Latin speakers of long ago did not have an equivalent term to cover on-car or chariot advertising. Although they probably did market goods with slogans on the sides of their carriages, if not horses and oxen.
Nowadays, it’s best to be aware of the potential to be ripped off by unscrupulous-minded individuals and firms who masquerade as legitimate service providers.
The internet is rife with examples of people being suckered into passing over sizable sums of cash. And in return, a promise of a windfall. Or even worse, handing over the keys to their car, never to see it again.
In short, do not respond to unsolicited emails. Do not hand over any cash or pass on your bank details, and only contact reliable companies.
It’s also worth taking note of what is advertised on your car. Don’t get fooled into promoting offensive content.
Not only could this lead to your vehicle being targeted by people who object, but it could place you in a tricky position with the authorities.
Who can have car advertising?
If the idea of turning your car into a mobile advert appeals, and you fit the profile, you can earn a pretty penny. However, there are some rules that are worth bearing in mind to avoid disappointment.
For a start, you can only permit advertising on a car you that you legally own. You’ll need to check with your provider if you have the car on a hire purchase agreement.
Young entrepreneurs should bear in mind that they invariably need to hold a full, clean licence and they must be the legal owner of their vehicle.
'Hands-on’ is the attribute that car wrap advertising companies look for in an advertising motorist.
If you tick their boxes, you stand a good chance of getting a contract provided you keep your car clean.
The last thing any advertising company wants is a dust-covered advertisement. And, chances are they’ll check that you’re driving in accordance with the details you provided when signing up.
The specifics of any agreement might vary between companies, but in general they might look for someone who:
- Legally owns the car they're using
- Has a full, clean driving licence
- Has adequate car insurance and a valid MOT
- Keeps the car in good condition.
Can I advertise my own business on my car?
Of course. Van owners already know the benefits of using signwriting to advertise their business. There’s nothing to stop a self-employed person from advertising their business on their own vehicle, providing a few sensible precautions are followed:
Don’t wrap around headlights, windows or the windscreen
Get a professional firm to attach the transfer. Or you may have the devil of a job removing it.
According to eHow.com it typically costs between £1,300 and £1,950 to wrap a small car. Window stickers and magnets start at less than £65, depending on size, colour and shape.
Car advertising and car insurance
Whether you’re paid to add a promotion to your car, van or bike, or are taking the initiative to invest in your own firm, don’t forget that any alteration to your vehicle could have ramifications on your car insurance status.
It may not seem as big a deal as popping on a spoiler or chrome wheel caps, but just by adding some advertising to your car, you could make it a target. This potentially increases the risk of car theft.
For this reason, it is essential to inform your insurance policy provider ahead of any contract.