Do You Have a Winning Lineup for Outdoor Graphics?

Now more than any other time of year, outdoor signage and graphics are front and center and in demand. We hold outdoor graphics to higher expectations in terms of durability and longevity, but also in photo and color reproduction and overall strength and visual appeal. We gathered some of our customers’ favorite outdoor products for a variety of applications. Check out this list to find your tried-and-true choices, as well as some new products that you’ve yet to discover:

Although it’s not technically specified for outdoor use, our customers have found that LexJet TOUGHcoat ThriftyBanner can take the heat … and the rain. Photographer Carl Caylor reproduced football player images, shown above, and displayed them on the field in frames attached with BannerUps for an entire football season. “We had a few games with really nasty weather, and they really held up great,” he says. “The ThriftyBanner got wet, but after the game we hung them up to dry, and everything was fine. It was amazing for a product that’s not really rated for outdoor longevity.”

LexJet Simple Adhesive Vinyl SUV is a tried-and-true outdoor self-adhesive option. It can be used to cover up eyesores, like Spectra Imaging achieved quite stylishly by covering a generator and finishing it with a film laminate for extra outdoor protection, pictured here. Another self-adhesive favorite is LexJet TOUGHcoat AquaVinyl PSA, a go-to choice for durable outdoor signs, like those used for election season yard signs when paired with Coroplast or foam boards. And don’t forget that LexJet now carries a full line of Avery Dennison films and laminates made specifically for long-term outdoor use for vehicles, transit and marine graphics, as well as floors, windows and walls.

Need a lasting window option? We’ve got dozens of window graphics choices, but if it’s a retail space and you want to see through the graphic, a favorite option is LexJet Simple Perforated Window Vinyl (70/30). Because 70% of the surface area is printable, you get great graphic reproduction and color punch with the added benefit of not obstructing the visibility through the window. Compatible with solvent, eco-solvent, UV-curable and latex inks, it’s designed to mount on the exterior of the window and will cleanly remove from the glass within the first year of installation.

Try LexJet Production Display Film SUV for banner stands. If you’ve got a customer request for banner stands that’ll be used outdoors, this is an ideal option for you. Our Production Display Films were a huge success when they launched, and it’s not hard to see why — this true lay-flat option won’t curl on the sides the way some material will, especially when they’ve been displayed for some time. The solvent option means you don’t have to apply a laminate top coat, and it’s super versatile. LexJet Production Display Film SUV is ideal for trade shows when you don’t need it to stand up to the outdoor elements.

If you’ve got dye-sublimation capabilities in your facility, a high-end, durable solution is ChromaLuxe EXT, made specifically to be used outdoors and guaranteed to last up to and beyond three years. These metal panels create stunning, high-end signage or décor with the vivid color reproduction we expect from dye-sub transfers. Stay tuned to our blog for more information and real-life examples featuring ChromaLuxe EXT!

How to Start Marketing Your Décor Print Services

Deciding to add services like custom-printed wallcoverings and canvas wraps to your business is the easy part. Getting the word out and bringing in potential customers is where the challenge lies. Here are 5 tips to help you get started with marketing décor print services:

  1. Fix your identity. If your operation has always been called a “sign shop,” consider adjusting your business name or adding a new business unit specifically for décor services. Target which services you want to offer (start with one or two) and determine which products you want to print to. Once these are nailed down, the business name and focus will start to fall into place.
  2. Practice and promote. If you’ve decided to add customized digitally printed wallcoverings as your new offering, find a project you can work on as a beta site. Perhaps a restaurant that a friend owns or a business you regularly frequent that could use an update. Offer to print wallcovering for a room for free so you can get real-world experience in terms of the work flow, installation and product performance. When you’ve successfully completed a project, use before, during and after photos on social media and email campaigns to show off your new expertise.
  3. Connect with others. Get to know local interior designers who could capitalize on your new services. Attend networking events and learn about community projects that could allow you an opportunity to show off your work and get free publicity. Focus on collaborating with other professionals who may need the talents of your graphics team to create artwork for canvas wraps or customized patterns for wallcovering — and charge them reasonably for this niche service.
  4. Upsell to current customers. Opportunities are everywhere. If you’ve been creating backlit displays for a retail outlet, ask them if they’re interested in a wall mural to liven up their store. Same goes for restaurants, hotels or corporate accounts that you print signage for. Could they use a fresh accent wall or canvas wraps to add ambiance or elegance to their spaces?
  5. Get your content together. Create a sample book (or web page) of the types of work you can do. Photos with finished applications will go a long way in helping your customers to visualize what you can customize for them.

If you have questions about marketing décor services or success stories to share, tell us about it in the comments below.

Buy 1 Roll of HP Opaque Scrim, Get 1 Roll Free

For a sturdier indoor or outdoor banner option, stock up now on HP Opaque Scrim. For a limited time, you can buy one roll of 36-in or 24-in wide HP Opaque Scrim and get another roll of the same product (matching SKU) for FREE!*

This water- and tear-resistant material has full 100% opacity for no show-through. HP Opaque Scrim produces long-lasting, sharp image quality perfect for a wide range of graphic needs. Plus, it’s environmentally sound and certified flame resistant, and can stand up to all sorts of demanding spaces, making it ideal for busy, high-traffic indoor or outdoor displays.

Product Highlights:

  • Durable, tear-resistant polyester fabric
  • REACH compliant
  • Perfect for long-lasting indoor and demanding outdoor conditions
  • Brilliant image quality
  • Flame resistant with approved fire certifications

To purchase online, add the product in multiples of two (2, 4, 6, etc.) and use coupon code BOGO in your cart, or call your LexJet representative to order by phone.

*While supplies last

Choosing HEYtex for High-end Outdoor Signage

In the competitive world of business, it’s no surprise that large enterprises demand that their signage applications and designs be top-notch and eye-catching. For visual communications company Tone LLC, creating mesmerizing signage is its forte.

Focusing on large-format decorative printing and wall coverings, Tone’s work can be seen across the country, specializing in grand, large, and wide format graphics for construction, event and retail solutions. For Tone’s managing partner Steven Thompson, HEYtex 15 oz. Topaz DS and HEYtex 13 oz. TopazFLX Matte are his go-to option for dazzling and durable outdoor applications.

Tone’s work for French trunk and leather goods manufacturer, Goyard Paris (shown above), is one of its most recent applications featuring HEYtex products. In order to draw attention to Goyard’s new stores opening in San Francisco, Beverly Hills and Miami, Tone created storefront barricades to kick-start the brand’s awareness in the community.

The barricades were designed to feature Goyard’s logo, history excerpts, the grand opening date and even old photos of Goyard’s vintage storefronts from the past. The San Francisco application is designed to look like a high-fashion trunk, which quickly captures the attention of a passersby.

HEYtex offers gloss and matte finish materials with high tensile strength, ideal for the outdoor signage Tone creates. “It’s a nice, thick media,” Thompson says. “The denier count is really high compared to the different vinyl substrates, which is crucial for outdoor signage.”

Combined with an HP Latex 560 printer, the graphics are beautifully finished and scratch resistant – ready for Tone’s various high-end outdoor applications.

Now Available: EnduraFab™ Textiles, Exclusively at LexJet

You’ve asked for a latex-compatible, reliable and durable fabric. Now you’ve got it. LexJet has partnered with Green Textile to introduce EnduraFab™ Textiles, 100% polyester warp knit fabrics that have been finished with a proprietary chemistry specifically designed to adhere third-generation latex inks to the fabric.

“Over the past few years, we’ve witnessed the growing trend and subsequent demand for inkjet printable fabrics, specifically those that are compatible with latex inks,” says Jaimie Mask, product specialist. “With EnduraFab™, we’re answering that call with an excellent line of textiles from our partners at Green Textile. These six new products are changing the game for wide format printing.”

Epson’s S60600 a “Well Thought-Out Machine” for New FASTSIGNS Shop

When Liz Allen’s entrepreneurial spirit kicked in, and she decided to open up a FASTSIGNS franchise in Oviedo, Fla., she had a number of items on her to-do list, but perhaps few as important as purchasing a wide-format printer for the shop. When attending the ISA Sign Expo in Orlando earlier this year, she jumped on a discount offered in a show special, and purchased an Epson SureColor S60600 64-inch solvent printer from LexJet.

The Epson SureColor S60600 at FASTSIGNS Store 2106 in Oviedo, Fla.
The Epson SureColor S60600 at FASTSIGNS Store 2106 in Oviedo, Fla.

“FASTSIGNS did recommend the Epson,” Allen says. “We chose it because of its speed. It was three times faster than the other printer we looked at.”

Allen opened her new FASTSIGNS store in July, and because she’s new to wide-format printing, she hired Mike Howell, a seasoned sign shop printer, to manage production of banners, floor graphics, magnets and more of the shop’s offerings.

“I’ve been in the sign business for 30 years,” Howell says. “I saw the Epson printer when I was at FASTSIGNS corporate office, so I was able to get my hands on the printer. It’s very quick — a lot faster than a lot of the other machines I’ve used.”