When deciding what to put on your shirts, keep in mind your target audience. You want to ensure there is a big enough demand for your design.
Keep the following in mind about your target audience:
- They need to be passionate about the subject matter your shirt is related to.
- They need to be large enough in numbers for you to sell a decent amount of shirts.
- They need to have disposable income and a credit card for ordering.
Short Term Popularity
If you pick a topic that has a limited lifespan (e.g. related to a specific event) then you need to understand that your design will have a peak, and then die down until the point that very few (if any) people will be interested in it. However, if you are quick to capture something hot and fresh, you might be the first or only person with anything like it, and you could get a huge boost in sales.
An example of a short-term design would be a Graduates 2018 themed design. It would be very popular during the weeks surrounding graduation time this year, but would then become completely undesirable.
Alternatively, a long-term design is something that doesn’t date quickly or at all, and you could have consistent sales for some time. However, you might not have the surge that comes with short-term hot properties.
A shirt that says Taco Party for example, is not going to have a specific reason to be dated and lose popularity.
Inbetween these two, you have seasonal designs. These are tied to specific times, but ones that come around again (such as the literal seasons).
For example, a design inspired by a holiday like Christmas would be relevant for a short time, but will return to relevancy the following year.
Creating A Flexible Design
The other important factor to consider when settling on a design, is how flexible it is.
- Does your design look good on a number of different coloured shirts?
- Does your design work on other clothing styles, such as Hoodies?
- Can your design be easily adapted into alternative designs? (E.g. does it mention a sports team or a person’s name, that could easily be swapped out to create a different variant?).
All of these factors will make it much easier for you to expand your offering, and potentially earn more money from the original design effort.
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