We had a birthday! Or rather, Tees For Your Head had a birthday.
And our cake had one candle on it.
We opened for business on June 22, 2012. Since then, we’ve gone from 18 designs available to 48. We had our first international sale, to England. (France, you flirted with us, and we’re still hoping to date you.) We had our first day of selling multiple shirts. We had our first day of selling multiple shirts to more than one customer.
We still cheer when we get an order. It’s exciting! I love to see which designs people choose, and if I have the chance, I ask how they found us.
Since I’m the marketing department, I need to know what’s working to let our geeky tribe know we exist. Natural search (when someone goes online looking for a geeky t-shirt for a gift or for themselves) seemed like the best moment to catch people’s eye, and it turns out that is when we are getting their attention. Our images are all labeled for SEO (search engine optimization–hey, I started out talking about birthdays and now I’m talking SEO, hmmm) and the images are doing very well in search results.
As a new business, you have to decide where to spend your money. We had two main areas where we spent during this first year: we did a photo shoot for the website, and we paid for press release placement: two releases per month for a year. The photo shoot, done by Ariel Lieberman has been a fantastic investment. I highly recommend her–she’s organized, calm, knowledgeable, and did a great job. arielliebermanphoto.com
An early contact I made with a tee reviewer said we had one of the ugliest websites he’d ever seen, and if he hadn’t seen the photos of our tees on models, he’d never have realized that they were any good. Okay, then! (We opened with product images on drawings of t-shirts.)
I actually like to get really blunt feedback, since one’s friends tend to be nice and supportive and don’t tell you the hard stuff. (Tell us if you think we’re doing something wrong! Please!) So thanks for saving us from complete disgrace with that tee reviewer, Ariel.
The photos also tie in with the press releases, which have become a vehicle for geeky t-shirt photos. Poifect. The press releases let us tie our keywords to our tees, like “physics t-shirt,” which help people find us, and the releases will live for quite awhile on the web. “Indefinitely,” in fact, which I am taking to mean at least a few years.
Now if I could just figure out how to reach the non-computer-using grandmas-of-engineers, because they need to buy birthday and Christmas presents for those perplexing grandchildren who are studying what?, that would make for a good Year Two for us.