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Correctly Setting Expectations

(October 2010) posted on Thu Oct 07, 2010

Best practices for handling client expectations for vehicle wrapping


By Jared Smith, vehicle wrapping

Now, it’s time to perform the true magic that customers come to us for: the install. I am still amazed daily at what our install crew is able to accomplish on a three-dimensional vehicle with a roll of two-dimensional vinyl. But even our own award winning install crew has its limitations, and it’s our duty to let the client know about those limitations. One example is setting the client’s expectations to how well a graphic element will line up across the hood and front fender of a 1963 VW Beetle. Other examples include explaining that we recommend removing most manufacturer badges, or how the vinyl will perform or fail if we wrap over them or cut around them. Many clients would incorrectly assume that every square inch of visible painted surfaces can be wrapped. There are many instances where this is just not the case, and if the client is expecting one thing and gets another, it becomes difficult to explain these items away after the fact.

Be up front when explaining that the door gaps on H1 Hummers are so wide and deep you will see the factory paint color when the install is completed. Let the client know ahead of time that you cannot wrap between the bed and the cab of most pickup trucks. Inform the client that they can expect to see some damage if they take their cut-vinyl vehicle graphics through an aggressive car wash with spinning brushes. Let them know they need to contact you if they see any vinyl lifting or any fading or cracking. Explain to them, or better yet, publish and hand to them the correct use and care procedures for their new wrap. If your client is upset in six years when their hood is faded, it might be possible that you did not correctly set their expectations.

Over deliver
My primary point here is that as the expert you cannot forget that what is common sense to you may not be common sense to your customer. You should constantly be setting their expectations through the process. Tell them how it works, what they can expect, and then over-deliver on those expectations. You want a client who, at the absolute least, gets exactly what they were promised. That is a client that will leave your shop with a satisfied feeling that they made a good purchase from a great vendor.
 


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