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Sean Tomlin

Finding FOCUS!

By Services

Via our article written for GraphicsPro Magazine Feb 15, 2022.

One Sign Shop’s Journey to Finding a Focus

Sean Tomlin, Designer Wraps & Signs, says “I wanted to do it all, but I soon realized I couldn’t.”

 

As some of you may already know, it’s difficult to be the one-stop shop for everyone. Hence the old saying “Jack of all trades, master of none.” Stop trying to make everyone happy by being all things to all people — that’ll be your road to failure.

How can you physically (and fairly) split 100% of your focus/time on more than one thing at a time? Just saying that out loud makes no sense, and in my opinion, multitasking is a myth. How can one actually and efficiently multitask? It’s just not possible. If I’m working on Project A and Project B simultaneously, which one gets the most focus? You’re task-switching, not multitasking, and there’s a big difference.

Even computers that “multitask” are sacrificing memory and CPU power to do more than one task at the same time. Instead, focus on one task/project at a time; complete it and move to the next task, and so on. Keep a list; check things off as you complete them.

Focus is a superpower

The ability to focus on the most important task at hand is the superpower of high achievers and very successful people. I’m not saying I’m there. I struggle with this day-to-day; the whirlwinds of daily life always seem to get in the way. Whether it be phone calls, emails, walk-ins, questions, putting out fires, and so on, if we create an environment that allows that to happen, guess what? It will continue to happen.

So, what can we do to change or control our whirlwind?

First, close your door! No more open-door policy. I know you want to be “open and available” to your employees, but when do you have time to do your own work? When do you have time to focus on what you should be doing? What are you the best at? When do you make time to run your sign company, and not be run by your company? When do you make time to work on your business? I’m not just talking about tasks only here; I’m talking about the deeper, more important “direction of your company” stuff.

  • Pro tip: Check out “The 4 Disciplines of Execution” — it’s a great read.

Choosing a focus for Designer Wraps & Signs

A quick personal story. Back in 2006, when I started Designer Wraps, I wanted to offer all things to everyone. I wasn’t very clear on what I wanted to do. I wanted to make signs, banners, and stickers; I wanted to letter trucks, wrap cars, and do PPF and tint. I wanted to do it all, but I soon realized I couldn’t. So I began to focus without actually making a strategic plan to do so.

I said to myself, “I don’t want to make signs; I only want to wrap cars. Actually, I only want to wrap race cars and exotic vehicles.” And so, that’s what I did. We began to create a name for ourselves in that space, and by 2008-2010, we had a pretty decent following for just that — race car liveries and exotic vehicle wraps (color changes and chrome wraps). That was our focus.

Then, fast-forward a couple of years later. I realized that color change wraps were not what I wanted to do, and it wasn’t making sense financially. The residual income for us was in commercial graphics, specifically fleet wraps. So I began to change our focus to that market. We were offering commercial wraps all along; we just weren’t promoting them too heavily on social media. When we did, the responses were rather unexciting and didn’t get a lot of likes. Well, guess what? Likes don’t pay the bills (unless you’re an influencer).

Commercial wraps, color changes, race cars, interior wraps, signs, and banners. I thought to myself, “Nope, still not doing enough.” I wanted more. So in 2015, I acquired a commercial printing and apparel business. I thought, “Man, so many of our customers also need apparel and business cards and brochures for their businesses, so we should be offering those to them as well. We’ll be a one-stop shop for them.”

The idea is wonderful. It makes so much sense. For some companies out there, it does. I believe they are doing it successfully. For our company and myself, something was being sacrificed out of the three divisions: wraps, printing, or apparel. Only one got all of my attention at a time, and for a while there, it was rather chaotic.

It wasn’t until a few years later that I finally realized something had to go. So I began to sell off the divisions that didn’t fit our end goal. We said goodbye to offset printing first, then about two years later, we eliminated our apparel division, which included screen printing and dye-sublimation. Since doing so, we have not looked back. Although some were upset due to convenience, most of our customers understood and are now serviced better than ever on their vehicle graphics needs.

Today, we are a commercial vinyl wrapping company specializing in fleet graphics, corporate interior branding, and signage. Focusing on what we do best has allowed us to develop systems that have made us more efficient and further grow in those markets.

Source article: https://graphics-pro.com/feature/one-sign-shops-journey-to-finding-a-focus/

 

 

Top Tips for Running Your Sign or Wrap Shop in 2022

By Services

Sean Tomlin, Designer Wraps, poses some important questions and encourages shops to “inspect what you expect” in Graphics PRO Magazine

So it’s 2022; now what? Did you plan out your “new year” last year? If not, it’s not too late to start. I’m going to propose different questions here with the hopes of provoking some thoughts that you may have otherwise not have considered. So, here are some things to think about when planning your year.

What did you learn last year?

Is there anything you did last year that, if done differently, you could/would do better this year?

  • Pro tip: Track mistakes, misprints, waste, etc., in a spreadsheet and compare it month-to-month/year-to-year. You can’t change what you don’t know.

Financials

Is all of your end-of-year booking cleaned up and ready to give to your accountant? How did your sales compare to the year before? What are your financial goals for 2022? How do you plan on accomplishing them?

  • Pro tip: It’s easy when you’re using good software like QuickBooks or Freshbooks (not to be confused with estimating/invoicing, job-tracking software like shopVOX or CoreBridge).

How’s your org chart?

Are all the right “butts” in the right seats? Does everyone know what they are accountable for? How do they know? Who is tracking it?

  • Pro tip: I know the market is tough right now, but try to focus on hiring people that align with your core values first, not just on emotion and a “good interview.” Remember to train, set expectations, and measure results! You’ve got to inspect what you expect in all areas of your business.

What about systems?

Is your process simple and easy to understand by your customers AND your employees? If not, what can you do this week to make it so?

  • Pro tip: Write out your process step-by-step on a whiteboard or paper. Start with a heading for each step or icon. Look at it and try to run through it with a fresh set of eyes. Make any adjustments needed here, then start adding the sub-components that make each “gear” turn as efficiently as possible, so the “machine” runs as smoothly as it can.

Organization (as-in not disorganized) 

How does your showroom look? Is it cluttered? Does it need updating? What about material samples? How’s your conference room look? Is it branded? Is it set up for Zoom calls with customers? How’s your production room/space look? Need better material storage/handling? How’s your fab and installation look? Better lighting? Tools? Equipment?

  • Pro tip: Sometimes, a simple, fresh coat of paint goes a long way, or a nice new wall wrap to spice things up. You may also consider a floor scrubber to control dirt and dust in your production/install areas.

Let’s talk expansion

Are you prepared to grow? Are your budgets done? Will you be buying any new equipment this year? If so, what? When? How will you pay for it (cash, lease, finance)? Do you have enough space; the personnel to run the equipment? What about new markets? Is this the year to start looking outside of your current base? Or is your niche just right?

  • Pro tip: You don’t want to grow a broken business. Make certain all of your “ducks are in a row,” your systems are bulletproof, your people are trained and accountable, and your financials are solid enough for growth. Remember, you’ve got to inspect what you expect!

Marketing

Is your marketing plan ready for 2022? Have you thought about social media? Don’t forget about LinkedIn. Are you using all the platforms as efficiently as you can? Is your messaging the same across all platforms? How do potential customers reach you on those platforms? Is your CRM in place? How does your website look? Is it mobile-friendly? Stats show that over 80% of today’s traffic is from mobile devices. It may be time to update and upgrade your site. Otherwise, it may not be the most user-friendly on a mobile device.

What do you mean you don’t have a website? No, you can’t use Facebook or Yellow Pages as your website.

  • Pro tip: Use Wix if you have to, but make sure it’s your unique domain name and not wix.com/yourcompany1. Hire a professional. Stop trying to do it all yourself. Either outsource or, if it’s in your budget, hire a part-time or full-time person in-house to handle this along with your other marketing efforts.

Sales

As billionaire Mark Cuban always says, “Sales fixes everything!” Be experts at selling because those are the companies that win, as opposed to the companies that may be great at what they do, but they don’t know how to sell. What does your sales process look like? It should be part of your system mentioned earlier. Are your salespeople adequately trained? Are they asking the right questions and explaining clear expectations? Back to marketing — how do you get your leads? How are you tracking the leads? Is your CRM in place and being used properly?

  • Pro tip: Be sure to present what makes you unique and different at the forefront of your sales and marketing process.

Business success

This could be an article all to itself. Are your goals set? Are you an owner? If so, are you working on your business, not in your business? Are all of your staff members on the same page as your leadership team? Is your vision clear to the entire organization?

  • Pro tip: Print out a large poster or vinyl lettering of your core values on a very visible wall in your shop (or in the breakroom). Track successes and wins and celebrate them (and your employees) publicly during your staff meetings.

Personal success

What books are you reading right now? What books are next?

  • Pro tip: Be sure to always take time for yourself to continue learning each day. You’re never too old to learn something new, the minute you think you already know everything is when you stop growing. I always try to better myself every day. I want to be a better person, a smarter person than I was yesterday. Ask yourself, what can I do today to make my tomorrow better?

It’s hard to think of everything when planning out the year ahead, but you can start by asking yourself some questions. Add those questions to a spreadsheet or list, then do your best to answer them honestly with your leadership team. As you think of new questions to ask yourself, add them to the list, then use the same list of questions for the following year. Rinse and repeat.

Designer Wraps signmaking

Designer Wraps is rebranding!

By Designer Wraps News, Wrap News

Since 2006, Designer Wraps has been on a mission to deliver outstanding creativity and unprecedented customer service to our clients.

A lot has changed over the years – we’ve opened two new locations, shifted our focus to commercial vehicle wraps and interior signage & graphics, and invested in state-of-the-art technology – but that mission has remained our guiding force.

We’re excited to share with you that we are rebranding our company to align with our re-focused vision: striving to service our clients even more personally and effectively.

At Designer Wraps & Signs, we are committed to ensuring your brand gets the attention it deserves.

Watch this message from Designer Wraps CEO, Sean Tomlin, to hear more!

Designer_Wraps_Award

Designer Wraps Named Top Wrap Shop in Philadelphia Area

By Designer Wraps News, Wrap News

Designer Wraps is proud to be recognized as a top shop in the Philadelphia area!

Expertise.com – a site which specializes in finding tried and true industry professionals across more than 200 industries, recently reviewed 358 vehicle wrap shops in the Philadelphia area and selected the top nine.

The shops were evaluated on five criteria:

  1. Availability – including approachability and responsiveness
  2. Qualifications – including licensing, awards and accreditations
  3. Reputation – a proven track record of happy customers and over the top service
  4. Experience – industry mastery based on education and years in the trade
  5. Professionalism – conducting business with integrity and respect

Check out our write up here.

We’re proud to offer our expertise, authority and trust – learn more about our other awards

3 Easy Tips for Winter Wrap Care

By Wrap Maintenance

Winter is here – and, with it, a need to customize your vehicle’s wrap care routine. Regular care is the best way to keep your vehicle’s wrap safe from the wrath of Jack Frost.

 

Step away from the ice scraper:

Remove snow and ice from your vehicle by using a gentle broom or soft cloth instead of an ice scraper. Traditional ice scrapers can damage your vehicle’s wrap.

Defrost, don’t scrape:

If your wrap extends to your windows, use your vehicle’s defroster to remove snow and ice.

Keep it clean:

Remove road salt from your vehicle as quickly as possible. Salt build-up can be corrosive to vinyl and paint. Of course, the best way to clean your vehicle is by hand washing it, but if that’s not possible (because of your aversion to becoming a human ice-cycle, perhaps), run it through a touch-less or brush-less automatic car wash, but skip the wax option.

Gently dry the vehicle with a microfiber cloth. Make sure to include your vehicle’s undercarriage and wheel wells to make sure all of the salt is removed. If the salt is not removed, rust will develop in those areas. Vinyl will not adhere to rust, which could pose a problem in the future for your wrap.

 

Learn more about routine wrap maintenance here.

Ready to get your vehicle wrapped? We’re here to help! Contact us.

 

Winter tips from City Scoop.

Designer Wraps Opens Second Location

By Designer Wraps News

You might ask “Who expands and opens another location during a pandemic?” Well, we did, and we’re so glad we decided to so. Despite the global pandemic, Designer Wraps (aside from a very brief closure in NJ) has seen tremendous growth, along with an opportunity to expand our operations into another State (Mooresville, North Carolina).

Although Designer Wraps North Carolina technically opened back in June 2020, we held our official Grand Opening celebration on November 5th, 2020. During that event, we raffled-off one Free Full Wrap (or up to $2500 towards a wrap) to one lucky winner. The event featured a few of our new neighbors including Black Powder Coffee, Flex Fitness, live music by Elevate Rock School, and food provided by KO Food Truck.

(left to right) Aaron Bender, Sean TomlinThe new location is headed-up by Aaron Bender, GM, who is a previously long-time employee of Designer Wraps NJ and along with a degree in Art, is an Avery Certified Graphics Installer and, along with his team, knows how to get things done, on time and on budget.

The event, along with a brief history on Designer Wraps and its founder Sean Tomlin, were recently featured in the trade magazine GraphicsPro which can be read here.

Designer Wraps North Carolina is located at 131 Crosslake Park Drive, Unit 206, Mooresville, NJ 28117.

Are car wraps a good investment for your small business

Are vehicle wraps a good investment for your business?

By Wrap News

We recently came across a really good article on that specific question “Are car wraps a good investment for your (my) small business?” Of course we think so … and we think it’s worth the read which does a good job at explaining why.

As always, should you have any questions about wrapping your car, truck, van or trailer for your small business, please shoot drop us a line via our quick quote form here.

Note: The picture above is NOT our work. It’s sourced from the article with links below.

Now here’s the article:

Local Marketing article from Intuit QuickBooks

Are car wraps a good investment for your small business?

By Suzanne Kearns

Have you ever seen a car, truck, or van in your area wrapped in an advertisement? If so, you may have wondered whether these advertisements — known as vehicle wraps — are a worthwhile investment get your small business off the ground or propell it forward.

Below, you’ll find a complete breakdown of what vehicle wraps are and whether you should consider investing in them.

What is a car wrap?

A vehicle wrap is a digitally-printed mobile billboard. Professionals will work with you to craft your advertisement and then print it on vinyl. Professionals print vinyl wraps in full color with eye-catching graphics. After using graphic design software to design your wrap, the individual will then apply the vinyl film to your car.

You can select either a full wrap, which covers the entire vehicle including the windows, or a partial wrap. Even if the wraps cover windows, you won’t have a problem looking through them. A high-quality vinyl wrap typically lasts three to five years.

Are vehicle wraps effective?

When you think of marketing techniques, the use of vehicle graphics may not be the first thing that comes to mind. However, you may want to give car wrapping more consideration based on the following statistics:

  • In the US today, “individual vehicle advertising generates between 30,000-70,000 daily vehicular impressions,” according to ARD Ventures.
  • “Mobile advertising generates 2.5 times more attention than a static billboard,” says Perception Research.
  • “Messages on outdoor mobile billboards have a 97% recall rate,” RYP & Becker Group indicates.

Based on these metrics, it’s easy to see why small business owners would want to consider choosing vehicle wraps over more traditional forms of advertising.

Aren’t wraps meant for large companies with vehicle fleets?

There is a common misconception that vinyl car wraps are only for companies with large vehicle fleets. However, this is not the case. Even if you don’t own company vehicles, you can still rent a truck or van to advertise your company’s information.

There are now companies that take advantage of the gig economy to provide wrap advertising services. For instance, sites such as Wrapify allow drivers to earn money by wrapping their cars on behalf of third-party companies, like yours.

Taking advantage of these mobile advertisements could legitimize your small business and introduce your brand and logo to customers in your area. When small business owners use vehicle wraps, it puts them on the same playing field as companies large enough to maintain vehicle fleets.

How much do car wraps cost?

The cost of vinyl wraps depends on the size of the vehicle you wish to cover … read more here…

Designer Wraps offers a full-line of custom car wraps, truck wraps, van wraps, trailer wraps for your small business. Whether you need a custom designed wrap, or have art ready to go for your fleet wrap, Designer Wraps is YOUR choice to get it done right! Remember Designer Wraps … we’ve got you covered! #designerwraps

Contact us today for a free consultation or price quote

1-856-265-0700

Designer Wraps Wins Avery Dennison Artists in Automotive Designer Competition

By Designer Wraps News

Designer Wraps lead designer Casey Guessford has won the first annual Avery Dennison Artists in Automotive: a competition for designers award. The challenge was to create a custom fully-wrapped design on a 2019 Lamborghini Urus.

The contest received over 40 entries and Casey received the most overall votes for his entry in the competition. Our design was featured at 2019 SEMA in Avery’s booth and wrapped live in front of an live audience of attendees on Wednesday, November 6th, 2019 but legendary wrappers Justin Pate, John Duever, and Chad Parrish.

There were two other winners in the contest that rounded out the top three.

We were excited to be a part of the first-ever contest held by Avery Dennison and very proud to have won.

Picture of our winning designer car wrap can be seen below:

Designer Wraps 2019 Wrap Like A King Entry – Continental Delinquent

By Designer Wraps News

PITMAN / GLASSBORO, NJ, September 4, 2019

Designer Wraps is proud announce its 2019 Avery Dennison Wrap Like A King Global Contest Entry … the Continental Delinquent.

Check out our “Making Of” Video on YouTube!

PROJECT DETAILS:

“I wasn’t planning on entering this year, but I was talked into it … we had to find the perfect canvas, and I believe did that. Next, I’ve had the idea of “weaving” brushed vinyl for over four years, just never had the right car to use it on.

I am fairly certain that the “weave” has NEVER BEEN DONE BEFORE with vinyl!

That was all I had for this project as for the concept and direction … everything was up to my team of super-crazy-talented designers, installers and helpers. It is with great honor we present to you … the Continental Delinquent.” ~ Sean

designer’s note: “One day I’m designing commercial fleets, prosthetics and casino walls, next day I have a continental boat on my plate! Our project was inspired by many thoughts, concepts, and hesitations. One design element we were going to show off our hidden technique; Weaved Vinyl. Our first direction we wanted to head towards a Lincoln/Presidential spin off and ended off not feeling quite right. With time running out I took my main inspiration towards the checkerboard pattern and creating a mad hatter, punk rock, and rebel approach. My personal experience of our work environment became these three nuances. Thus the creation of a Continental Delinquent.” ~ Casey

installer’s note: “One day he said I was a Leader and so, I started leading…. and well… Wrap Like A King… Here we are!!!! Avery’s world wide competition is an opportunity to showcase my profession, my craft and my passion. My goal is to not just wrap for fun but work on “a super cool project and Wrap Like A King was the perfect excuse”. We are taking the wrap game to another tier this time around and introducing to the world our new technique, Weaved Vinyl! Weaving strips of vinyl one by one over and under, over and under is enough to drive any installer insane. The only way to survive this journey was to call in help from my weaving expert of an alter ego, Samantha!” ~ Olga

Car owner: Rob at Forty 7 Motorsports

Video Edit: Zayna

Wrap Like A King 2019

#designerwraps

DesignerWraps.com

Official Website

Products used:

  • SWF Brushed Black
  • SWF Brushed Bronze
  • Conform Custom Purple Chrome
  • SWF Matte Black

1035 N. Main St. Pitman, NJ