Lowen Corporation wraps AGCO's combines to increase brand awareness.
Crop harvesting has come a long way since the days of the earliest combines, first patented in the US back in 1835. Today, combines have shifted from being horse-drawn to being mechanically horse-powered, and they’re equipped with technology such as data collection, yield-mapping, and hands-free, auto-steering.
Now, with the help of vehicle wraps, the harvester combine is also adding “marketing engine” to its growing list of capabilities.
The idea to use harvesters as a means of branding sprung from airplane small talk. On a plane back home to Kansas, Lowen Corporation senior account manager Jim Pool couldn’t help but notice his seatmate’s photos of combine harvesters displayed on his laptop.
“Have you thought about wrapping those in graphics?” Pool asked Kevin Cobb, product marketing manager of AGCO Corporation, a crop-harvest equipment company. “You could really increase your brand awareness.”
The informal chitchat led to a couple of phone calls and then a face-to-face meeting. From there, AGCO decided that, with the help of Lowen Corporation, it would spruce up its combine harvesters to be better represented at tradeshows.
“AGCO came up with the first design – flags. We tweaked the design to make it appear as though the flags were waving,” says Pool. Once the graphics were laid out to size in the design, AGCO opted to not have the flags carry over to the rear of the combines – but instead, to have the text read, ‘Your Country, Your Combine.’ “This worked out well, and we made the stripes from the flag fade out going to the rear of the combines.”
The shop output the wraps onto 3M Controltac IJ180-CV3 vinyl with 3M Scotchcal 8519 Luster laminate, using an HP Turbojet printer. Two in-house Lowen and 3M-certified installers took a trip to AGCO in Hesston, Kansas, to wrap the combines. “Wrapping combines isn’t much different than wrapping a vehicle. We utilized the same techniques as if we were wrapping an HHR (heritage high roof) at our own facility,” says Ray Carlson, installer for Lowen.
The combine’s height did pose some problems during installation – the team’s ladders simply were not tall enough. The solution: The installers took to the combine’s giant wheels and were able to successfully wrap the vehicle in its entirety.