Our Work: Great Northern Heating & Air Vehicle Graphics

by Cassandra Moffitt on

Vehicle graphics have presented us with some of our favorite in-office moments. We congregate in groups, we talk to ourselves, we act out scenarios, and we measure each other. All in a days work!

Great Northern Heating & Air, an up and coming business in the HVAC industry, turned to us for our expertise in vehicle graphics and wraps. They had recently purchased several Ford Transit 250’s to serve as their daily operations vehicles, and while they had poured a lot of time and effort into setting up the inside of the van to work for their needs, they were relying on us to make the outside of the van work just as hard.

We began our work by scouring the internet for photos of the right year, make and model of the vehicle. We wanted top views, side views, rear views, and even photos of the under body if we could find them (which we couldn’t, in this case). We needed to evaluate every piece of trim (is that metal, or plastic?), the functionality of the side mirrors (do those extend?), the way the side doors open (are there rollers that touch the body paint?), and how far the extension of the rear doors when opened (is it 90 degrees or a full 180?). When we couldn’t find all of the answers we needed, we took a field trip to the local Ford dealership to get answers to our few remaining questions.

Back at the office we physically re-enacted every way we could envision the Great Northern Heating & Air team could possibly interact with the vehicle. What space did we have to work with if the side door and passenger door were open? What did it look like if the left rear door was open, and someone was standing at the side of the van? You may be wondering why all of this was important – simple, we had to find any opportunity in which we could break a potential design.

For example, if we have important information showing on one panel of the truck, but 75% of the time a door will be open and blocking that panel, then our design has failed. Or, if we have a graphic that runs onto a window, what will it look like if the window is rolled down? Where are the vehicle handles or other parts of the vehicle trim that may introduce unintended meaning into a graphic laid over top?

These are NOT good looks for your brand.
These are NOT good looks for your brand.

After we had given careful consideration into all of the ways that a design could be broken, we settled on a simple, clean design that highlighted the most important takeaways for someone who saw the van: the brand, the website url, the phone number, and a brief list of the most common type of work they performed. The simplicity of the design gave our chosen graphics much more weight and importance, without things like the phone number being lost in a sea of unnecessary background swirls or landscapes. Overall, it added to the important traits of their brand – transparency and honesty in the work they do.

The finalized design, side and rear.
The finalized design, side and rear.

We were happy to work with Great Northern Heating & Air on this, and other, marketing campaigns!