Let the train take the strain
Using its HP Scitex TJ8350 Industrial Press, Aura Graphics (formerly SSDM) produced the graphics applied to two First Great Western power trains. These run daily on some of the country’s most popular business routes and are part of a major experiential promotional campaign for the new HP ElitePad 900.
The six-month campaign is aimed primarily at business travellers who account for the majority of First Great Western customers. In addition to the train graphics, the campaign also included social media activity and direct customer engagement, with live demonstrations of the HP ElitePad 900 on board the wrapped trains.
The train wraps, which were printed and installed by Aura Graphics in just three days and formed the centrepiece of the campaign, will be seen by passengers and bystanders as the power cars traverse First Great Western’s rail network, running from Paddington Station to South Wales via large parts of southern England and the West Country.
Regional Business Manager for HP Scitex Greater Western Europe, the UK and Ireland, Mark Rowland commented: “The campaign has many different elements but the train wraps create the first big impression on the target audience. Although the wraps were required on a fast turnaround, there could be no compromise on print quality. With the two wrapped trains operating an average of three routes a day, that equates to 12,000 people per day who will be exposed to the graphics..
“This initial impact is key to creating an immediate ‘buzz’ around the new product, helping the HP ElitePad 900 teams to then start direct communication with passengers during the journey. This campaign demonstrates perfectly how high-quality print can play a crucial role in the success of an integrated campaign.”
Key Accounts Manager at Aura Graphics, Andrew Pritchett added: “There are often many challenges when producing graphics for high-profile brands and print quality and turnaround time are among them. We have two HP Scitex TJ8350 Industrial Presses and their speed, reliability and print quality make them ideal to meet these challenges. The graphics for this particular project were printed in just one hour and installed over three days.”
The graphics were printed on an opaque white vinyl and laminated with a clear second film. For jobs such as the First Great Western train wraps, Aura Graphics carefully measures the train units, digitising these and creating templates specific for the train cars that were designated First Great Western’s Class 43 HST power cars.
Andrew Pritchett concluded: “With First Great Western’s distinctive rich blue livery, it was essential that the wraps were completely opaque, as the design of the graphics was predominantly white. The TJ8350 prints from roll-to-sheet and the wraps were assembled from panels comprising a total area of around 75 square metres for each wrap. The excellent coverage and colour reproduction achieved and the quality of the substrate used ensured that the white background was sufficiently dense and the end result met the expectations of First Great Western and the HP ElitePad team.
“In addition to the requirement for opacity, the ink and media had to be capable of withstanding environmental effects, such as wind, rain and sunlight, as well as adherence to the train at high speeds. Print quality was of equal importance, as the text and imagery would be viewed not only from station platforms but also from distant horizons”