You can use T-shirts to help build your brand. And raise funds for a good cause. Many small businesses, especially restaurants and boutique stores, find that loyal customers enjoy representing their brand. In fact, according to the Advertising Specialty Institue, ASI, custom t-shirts rank as the top promotional item overall.
It’s always great to see the progress our Stahls’ Family Small Business Fund Scholarship winners are making building their brands. Peggy Elliott recently checked in with Eddie Vargas and his family. They run a program called Keep Kids Off the Street. Here’s what she had to report.
About Keep Kids Off the Street
The KKOTS program provides opportunities to teach kids how to skateboard. It gives them an outlet for fun and community involvement. According to founder Eddie Vargas, “We offer free skate camps every summer, as well as provide skateboarding gear.”
In addition, KKOTS funds year-round trips to many outdoor skateparks and indoor during the winter. Plans for the future include developing an indoor space where the community can skate.
Fundraising with Merch
After winning the Stahls’ Heat Press Scholarship, KKOTS can make their own fundraising merchandise using the heat press and transfers. The transfers are made by Stahls’ Transfer Express and then pressed on shirts to sell and raise money to support the program. The proceeds allow them to purchase skateboards and sneakers for kids in need.
The next step is finding great art that represents the brand that people want to buy. Eddie had some ideas but wanted to develop the art a bit more. He turned to Great Dane Graphics for help.
Help from Great Dane Graphics
Dane Clement and Missy Marino of Great Dane Graphics met with Eddie and his son Eddie Jr. to discuss ideas. Both father and son had their own ideas on what they wanted, so it was important to come up with something that would appeal to both.
It Starts with an Idea
Ideas were provided for both a brand logo as well as generic designs to print on various garments. When Eddie saw the bulldog design Great Dane Graphics created, he gave two thumbs up. Eddie happily said, “You brought my dog to life!”
Eddie and Eddie Jr. chose designs for their brand as well as a few of the generic designs to get started. Feedback from the community was needed.
According to Eddie, “I’m in Boston right now, at least ten people wanted the dog t-shirt, l couldn’t believe it! I didn’t come prepared, I only brought a couple to show them but I will be prepared next weekend.”
Use T-Shirts to Help Build Your Brand
Overall, the reaction has been very positive. They have requests for sales.
Dane Clement was happy to help. “It was great being able to come up with designs that helped bridge the gap on what father and son were looking for and give them something that everyone was excited about,” says Dane.
The gang at Keep Kids Off the Street is very grateful. Finding the right art makes all the difference when selling shirts.
Last but not least, “Thank you to everyone involved,” from Eddie Vargas Sr.
Good luck with your fundraising! You can check out their Instagram if you want to see more.