Small Business Brief


Do Branded Bumper Stickers Work? 8 Things You Should Know

Picture this: your happy customers advertising for you all over your community

What if you could spread the word about your small business to potential customers at a minimum cost and effort to you?

That’s a huge relief to small automotive businesses everywhere.

Promotional bumper stickers are a great resource for free advertising that travels around by itself.

The great thing about car decals is they are not only an appreciative gift for your current customers, but they are also an ongoing advertisement for you.

Plus, your customers will be spreading the word by simply going through their daily routine.

Bumper stickers can be an eye-catching hook for potential customers, and they are also more meaningful than other forms of advertisement. The reason is that they are essentially peer-reviewed recommendations in sticker form.

Just like any marketing campaign, your bumper stickers should offer clear imagery and text that tells a story.

Do they work? Here are some helpful tips for making effective bumper stickers for your brand.

1. How to Promote with Bumper Stickers

If you’re interested in trying out bumper stickers for your business, then there are a few things you should consider first.

How will you distribute your bumper stickers and who will receive them? Maybe you plan to mail the bumper sticker to past customers who purchased a vehicle.

If so, you may want to further segment your bumper sticker and have different images depending on the vehicle purchased or the demographic.

Maybe you want to hand out promotional bumper stickers at your business. If you have a social media presence, you may want to build hype around the design by having followers vote on the final look.

This will invite customers to be involved and build traffic to your pages. You can even offer a giveaway as part of a contest. This way, your bumper sticker will become part of a larger marketing plan and fit in seamlessly with your other promotions.

Be Sure to Customize the Design

Take this opportunity to rethink your brand or logo design and messaging to fit the bumper sticker specifically.

It may seem easy to just slap your regular old logo onto a bumper sticker, but logos and designs don’t always translate well for all mediums. 

Think about what important information must go on the logo. For example, a name, website, phone number, etc. You may have to limit the messaging because of the bumper sticker’s small size.

Then begin to brainstorm the purpose of the bumper sticker and who you’re trying to engage.

What text or colors would be eye-catching to someone driving from a distance. Also, what colors would complement a customer’s vehicle as opposed to blending in or clashing? 

2. Why Word of Mouth Is Effective

Customers tend to trust their peers when it comes to making large purchases. A bumper sticker can speak volumes about your company.

Since the customer made a choice to voluntarily advertise your company on their personal vehicle, that instantly tells other potential customers in the area that you are a trusted business.

Bumper stickers can be a more effective form of advertisement than others because it is coming directly from your happy customers. 

92% of people trust word-of-mouth recommendations from people they know. This is especially proven in online forums but can work in real life too. A bumper sticker might spark a conversation with a friend or relative that leads to a purchase

3. All Shapes and Sizes

Say goodbye to the boring rectangle bumper stickers of the past. Now, car decals come in all shapes and sizes, which will help your automotive business stand out from the crowd.

Take advantage of these options by working the shape of the bumper sticker into your overall design. Sticking to a simple square or rectangle might cause your bumper sticker to blend in with others and get lost.

4. Showcase Your Events and Awards

Is there a big sale coming up? Or a special discount to veterans that you would like to promote? Find what makes your business special and showcase it.

These could become great design elements for your bumper sticker.

Maybe your business received an award for customer service or you are the largest dealership in the area. You can use the bumper sticker as further hype for your event or sale.

Keep in mind you should avoid dating your bumper sticker too much. You want your customers to keep it on their cars for years to come.

5. Who Is Your Audience?

Knowing who your bumper sticker is supposed to attract is important to the success of your campaign. The age, lifestyle, and location of your demographic will all play a role in the design elements.

Are you targeting a specific audience who likes a particular car? What are their interests? What images would most likely appeal to them?

Since there is limited space on a bumper sticker, you will want the language to draw your audience in right away. What will be the best selling points?

Is it prestige? Cost? Or maybe reliability?

These are all questions to ask and brainstorm with your marketing or design team. 

6. Car Window Decals for Company-Owned Vehicles

If you haven’t already, you should also make large decals for your company-owned vehicles to display. This could simply be a larger version of your bumper sticker. 

Since you can use the entire company car as an advertisement, you can expand on your brand messaging and display it on the windows and sides of the vehicle.

This is another easy way to advertise your business in your local community.

7. What to Avoid 

Bumper stickers can have a great reach in your business’ community and beyond for a relatively low cost. However, there are a few negatives.

For example, you can’t guarantee that every bumper sticker you purchase and distribute will be put on someone’s car. It’d be difficult to pinpoint how many are actually being used from the total purchased.

Also, tracking the results of your bumper sticker’s effectiveness can be difficult. Unlike web advertisements that can provide analytics so you can watch the results of a campaign live, advertising through bumper stickers is trickier.

You can try to track its effectiveness by putting a promotional code on the sticker or asking people to tell you how they heard about your business. But not everyone will share this information. 

8. Other Uses for Branded Stickers

Stickers aren’t just used on cars. They get around in a lot of other ways too.

Once you’ve gone through all the work of creating the perfect logo for your bumper sticker, you may want to share that design in more ways.

Turn your design into a wall or floor decal to draw attention and excitement about your brand.

You can also use stickers on surfaces within your company that are visible to customers, such as laptops, computers, desks, and windows.

Stick with Your Brand

Repetition is key in any marketing plan, and bumper stickers are just one piece of that puzzle. 

No matter what design, marketing sticker, or strategy you choose, make sure you stay true to your brand. That’s who your customers know and love. So don’t stray too far from who you are.

Want to learn more ways to promote your small business? Check out some of our helpful business advice articles. Or subscribe to our Small Business Brief and receive new information directly to your inbox.