Customer Sign Projects

Sea Dog Boating Solutions Uses Magnetics & Vehicle Graphics to Market Their Business

Recently, we completed a fun project for Steven Charlebois,. He wanted to market his business—Sea Dog Boating Solutions, and wanted to do it in as cost-effective a way as possible. Steven came to us for a marketing solution.

Because he doesn’t own a brick and mortar store, but instead consults with boat owners in person and sells products online, he didn’t need a permanent retail identification sign. The logical options were magnetic signs and vehicle graphics. While talking about his business with him, we became fascinated with the services and products he sells. A conversation ensued and this is what we found out:

Steve is the quintessential sailor. He discovered sail boats and sailing 13 years ago when he switched over from wind surSea Dog Boating Solutions Magnetic Signfing.  Steve is the kind of guy who would live on his boat if Vermont’s winters weren’t so darn cold. Instead, he started his business so he could help other sailors who are as enthusiastic about the water as he is, and it’s given him an excuse to talk “boating” year round.

He’s smart, too, and loves to consult with boat owners about gear and accessories. He noticed that some items serve the “aging community” well—folks into middle age who have just started to sail, or still love their boat now as much as they did when they started earlier in life, but perhaps need a little assistance.

For instance, if a boat owner has a dinghy that has to be bailed out and it’s a struggle, Steven suggests the Sea Joule Solar Bilge Pump, which does the bailing automatically. When railing is needed to get in or out of a boat, boat owners go to Steve for boarding bars.

What other kinds of consulting does he do? “I help people figure out what kind of boat they should purchase based upon a discussion with them and how they plan on using the boat,” he said. “I can help them find a mooring or dock on the lake, and help them determine which will meet their needs.” He also educates owners on storing and launching their boats. 

“If I am not qualified or can't help them, I will inform them of that or recommend someone who could help them out,” Steve said. “You can think of me as a resource to point people in the right direction.

Here are the products he sells from his website:

• Mariner 500 Headset System
• Eartec Simultalk 24G communication system
• Sea Joule Solar Bilge Pump with built-in solar panel
• Sea Joule Solar Bilge Pump with a remote solar panel
• Aquapac MP3 Player Waterproof Case
• Bison Water Bottles
• Bison Bottle Bandit
• Bison Cleap Cleat
• Canvas Tote Bags (small and medium sizes)
• Ding-EZ dinghy boarding line of products
• a Microphone Adapter to add voice capability to any headset
• Gift Certificates for consulting services or retail products

Three reasons why vehicle graphics are a better choice than magnetic signs

Both vehicle graphics (vinyl that is applied directly to the vehicle) and magnetic signs (graphics that are magnetically held to the side of the vehicle) are great ways to advertise your business as you drive from here to there during the course of your business day. Vehicle graphics stay on your truck or van permanently (or until you peel them off), whereas magnetic signs come on and off as you like.

Magnetic signs allow you to conduct business during the day, and not when it's after hours. They are obviously easy to change, so your business can be a pet sitting business in the morning, and switch to computer sales and service by the afternoon. That's the convenience of magnetics.

Here are three reasons why you may just go ahead and opt for vehicle graphics:

*More grown up and professional in appearance, vehicle graphics say "I've arrived" to your business prospects and existing clients.

* You have greater size options for your lettering. Magnetic sign material is restricted in one direction to 24" maximum. Vehicle graphics can cover just a small part, or all of your vehicle, turning it into a giant Truck Graphicsbillboard.

*Vehicle graphics are easier to maintain. In fact, all you have to do is wash your car occasionally (be careful with the pressure washer) and the graphics will clean up nicely. Magnetic signs need to be cleaned more carefully (in a sink of soapy water is good) or else road sand, salt and dirt collects behind them, damaging the paint on your vehicle, and potentially lifting them from the car (which means you can lose them as you drive down the highway).

Not to malign magnetic signs--they have their place on vehicles, but maybe you should give vehicle graphics greater consideration.

What are your thoughts?

An RV sporting a K-9 vehicle graphic? Yup, and it’s Elmo, a Cavalier Spaniel!

Elmo vehicle graphics on the back of his RV

When owners John and Lisa Marcus of Sanflorian Cavaliers in Jericho, Vermont, sent us a photo of their beloved Elmo competing in an agility event, we knew this vehicle graphic installation was going to be fun, and novel.

Elmo didn’t disappoint us. We blew him up to mega-size—his owners having captured him in mid-flight: his furry ears behind his head like wings, his soft brown eyes looking forward to the next jump, his paws rising over the bar of the jump.

Apparently, Elmo’s likeness on the Marcus’ RV has made a splash at dog and agility shows they’ve attended. And the initial reason for installing Elmo on the rear of their traveling kennel is that this is part of the Marcus’ advertising budget. What John and Lisa didn’t expect was all the buzz they received after posting Elmo pix on Facebook, and from the conversations they listened to on agility-related email lists.

It’s all proof, however, of the WOW factor vehicle graphics offer. For little relative money, your vehicle—whether it’s a truck, van, or RV—offers advertising value, and just sheer fun.

“I knew it would be advertising dollars well spent,” said Lisa. “But I never expected this.  Unbelievable.”





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