When the automobile was invented the use of gas stations were non-existent. As cars became more popular, and easier to obtain, gas stations started to bloom. At first gasoline had no reason not to stay a unified product, however, in the late 1910s and early 1920s gas stations started sweeping the nation and because of this competition spiked in the gasoline industry. As the onslaught in car owners continued to skyrocket, gasoline companies wanted a way to stand out in the fresh new market. Thus imaging was created.
Imaging is a way that gasoline (or petroleum) companies can standardize their stations. Companies such as Mobil/Exxon, Shell, Gulf, Citgo (and many others) have used Corporate imaging programs as a way to ensure that customers can recognize their stations. Before gas station canopies, these company used color schemes, logos and even specific styles to make sure that a customer could tell it was their station. Around 1915 signs started to be placed by the roadside to clearly identify the station. In the 1950s the use of an overhead canopy became an indispensable component to gas stations. These canopies became a place that a company could clearly and very largely display the company logo, name and signature colors.
With time all things change, this is no different in the world of gas stations and branding today. Many companies that had stations in 1920 still have stations today, but the image has conformed to the current trend. Now petroleum companies are one of the top buyers for overhead canopies but in the infancy of gas stations that was not the case. What images have changed from when you were a kid?
If you have questions on imaging or are interested in a custom image for your stations please contact us we look forward to helping assist with your corporate image branding or unbranded station details.