A car magnet can be a very cost effective method of advertising, especially for small businesses. These small, mobile billboards can be placed on any vehicle and effectively market services everywhere it goes. In a lot of ways, this makes it more effective than stationary billboards. However, in order for them to be most successful, people need to avoid these common mistakes when creating a car magnet.

Example of a sign with too much text.

Example of a sign with too much text.

  1. Don’t put on too much information – One of the most frequent mistakes that people make when getting a car magnet designed is trying to put too much information on it. Car magnets are often seen and read while vehicles are on the move. So unless you are waiting at a red light or parked, people won’t have the time to read your business name, mission statement, services, price list, website, and phone number as you zip along at 35 mph (or faster). When creating car magnets, it is best to keep it simple; your business name, your service, and contact information (for example: Best Fit Gloves – custom gloves for all – www.bestfitgloves.com). These details can normally be read at a glance and provides all of the pertinent information.
  1. Excellent example of bold, readable text

    Excellent example of bold, readable text

    Make sure that the lettering is large enough – Continuing on the theme above, the text on car magnets should be large enough to be easily read from a distance. Although a cursive font may look beautiful, is it easy to read as a car is zipping by? If the answer is “no,” then it should be avoided. Bold, sans-serif fonts (font without the “feet” on) normally work best for viewing at a distance and are quite legible even when just being glanced at. Some great examples would be: Arial Black, Arial Bold, Impact, or Helvetica.

  1. Use contrasting color combinations – One major item to also take into consideration is color. Although color can be a great way to draw attention and help your magnet stand out, certain color combinations are very difficult to read, especially when you don’t have to time to decipher them. The main issue to consider is the amount of contrast between the colors that you are using. Black text on a white background reads well because of the amount of contrast between the colors black (dark color) and white
    The red text on an orange background is difficult to read

    The red text on an orange background is difficult to read

    (light color). However, yellow text on a white background has less contrast, and as a result, is much more difficult to read. Put that same yellow text and put it on a black background and it is much more readable because of the contrast between black (dark color) and yellow (light color). The other thing to consider when choosing colors is the time of day the car magnet will be displayed. Certain colors do not display well at night. If you will be driving and doing work in the evening, you may want to consider utilizing colors that display better in low light.

  1. Make sure the sign size is large enough for your vehicle – I know that smaller signs are less expensive. However, it is worth the extra money to make sure that your car magnet is large enough to be seen on your vehicle. If you are driving and SUV, you should opt for a larger sign size than someone that is driving a compact car. Also, the more sign real estate you have on the magnet, the more room you have to make the text as large as possible, allowing it to have more visual impact.
  1. Use the correct imagery for your business – They say that a picture is worth a thousand words. Well since you are limited on the amount of words with car magnets, using the correct imagery can make a huge difference in the effectiveness of your sign. Is your business name too long for the magnet? Perhaps you can say it using an image instead. A picture can even be used in place of spelling out your services. There is no need to burden down your magnet with a ton of imagery though. One, well thought out, impactful image or piece of clipart can easily suffice.

Car magnets are absolutely an inexpensive and highly effective marketing tool allowing you exposure to a large volume of people. By following these tips, you can be sure that you will get a high rate of return for your investment.