The t-shirt business is one of the most popular businesses of choice of young entrepreneurs who are still trying to find out if entrepreneurship is right for them. Their initial notion of the t-shirt business is that it’s fun and relatively easy to run. The actual t-shirt printing could be easy in itself but what most new t-shirt entrepreneurs are not prepared for are the 101 things that are essential for running a successful t-shirt business. These include in-depth research, defining your brand, marketing online, marketing offline, and creating systems for good workflow, good order flow, and the most important one of all: managing business finances. You might suddenly have a headache just thinking about all the other non-shirt related things you have to do but let’s take this one step at a time.
In order for you to become successful in the t-shirt business, you have to do what the big guys are doing: Being totally nuts about t-shirts until they’re on the verge of lunacy! This is not an exaggeration, folks. Starting a t-shirt business is not as easy as 1,2,3. It is as hard as 1 to 1,000. The idea or concept for a t-shirt store is just step 0. When you are planning to actually turn your dream of having a t-shirt business into reality, your first step is planning and research.
You need to be meticulous and obsessive about this step before even diving into creating t-shirt designs. In this step, treat it as if it’s a thesis in college. Before anything, read as many t-shirt business books and listen to as many t-shirt business podcasts as you can because these are the tools that will prepare you for battle. Once you’re confident about your knowledge in the t-shirt business and business management in general, it’s time for the actual nitty-gritty planning and research of your t-shirt business. Some newbies do not obsess in this step and that’s probably the reason why they close even before they reach their first anniversary. If you want to be successful in the t-shirt business, don’t act like a newbie, act (and think) like you’re one of the big guys!
Here are the things the big guys work on before they start their t-shirt business.