Your T-Shirt!

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Custom Printed T-Shirts Business Plan

Market Analysis Summary

Your T-Shirt! has segmented the market into two groups, organized by the type of product that they purchase. The first group is customers that desire an already created graphic image to be placed on the their shirt. The second group are those that prefer custom artwork to be placed on their shirt. Your T-Shirt! has decided to divide the market by the products that they purchase because it offers an intuitive, easy method of targeting the two different groups. An additional reason for segmenting the market based on the two products is because the demographics for the buyers of the two products are distinct enough to group them separately.

4.1 Market Segmentation

Your T-Shirt! has segmented their market into two distinct groups. As mentioned previously, the two segments are grouped by the type of product they chose. Although Your T-Shirt! is dividing the market by product type, it is effectively dividing the market by age as well since the customers who purchase the custom artwork shirts tend to be older than the group preferring the ready-made graphics. While this is not a hard and fast rule, it is a fairly accurate generalization.

Graphics -- This is group purchases a shirt and has an existing graphic placed on the shirt. This is the less expensive option and lends itself to low production numbers, as low as one, since there is not the inherent expense of artwork creation.

  • Ages 14-25
  • 69% are students
  • Median individual income is $26,000
  • Go out to eat 3.4 times a week
  • Listen to 3.6 hours of music a week

Artwork -- This segment prefers having custom artwork created and placed on their shirt. They generally have the image or style in mind and will direct the artist to create it. Occassionally when the customer will not have an exact image in mind but will rely on the artist's skills to help shape the work. Some of these customers will use Your T-Shirt!'s partner artist, others will have a friend or other service provider develop the art.

  • Ages 24-43
  • Median individual income is $42,000
  • Go out to eat 2.7 times a week
  • Listen to 3.3 hours of music a week
  • 18% are using the shirt as a form of communication for a cause or a message
Market Analysis
Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5
Potential Customers Growth CAGR
Graphics 7% 7,879,664 8,431,240 9,021,427 9,652,927 10,328,632 7.00%
Artwork 8% 5,969,854 6,447,442 6,963,237 7,520,296 8,121,920 8.00%
Total 7.43% 13,849,518 14,878,682 15,984,664 17,173,223 18,450,552 7.43%

4.2 Target Market Segment Strategy

Your T-Shirt! has chosen these two market segments because their demographics (reasonably young) have the highest likelihood of purchasing a custom shirt. Both of these segments are reasonably young. This is important because most of Your T-Shirt!'s products are T-shirts and younger people tend to wear them frequently.

Music is also an important interest for the target markets since both segments listen to and watch more than average amount of music. T-shirts are particularly popular at music events. This phenomenon may be explained in part by the expressive nature of both music and T-shirt graphics. Your T-Shirt! will provide a form of expression, allowing each customer to choose what aesthetic or idea they want to communicate.

Lastly, the business will be located in Seattle which has a young, hip scene. There are many music and other venues that cater to Your T-Shirt!'s demographic and these will be useful in developing awareness of Your T-Shirt!

4.3 Service Business Analysis

The T-shirt design industry is a primarily brick and mortar based industry. Most companies offer either silk-screening or sublimation services to typically local customers. While most of the products are T-shirts, there is a niche of companies that offer these printing services for uniforms, team jerseys, etc. Most of the participants in the industry fall into two categories, those that sell to individuals and those that sell in multi-unit production runs. The companies that sell to individuals are almost always silk-screeners who have a limited number of silk-screens already developed. The customer chooses which one they want and a T-shirt is made. This type of vendor is often the typical T-shirt maker that you see at fairs. The second type of sells most of their products in larger production lots. This can be explained by the fact that for custom work, whether silk-screens or sublimations, it is not cost effective to produce in small lots.

Recently, a number of companies began offering computer-based sublimation enabling them to offer low production runs. The technology the various companies are using, with Your T-Shirt! being an exception, are is in its infancy an is of low resolution. While the new technology allow companies to offer sublimation using computers, the image quality is average at best. Your T-Shirt! is able to leverage proprietary technology as a competitive edge to produce a much higher quality computer sublimation.

4.3.1 Competition and Buying Patterns

Your T-Shirt! has identified three competitors, two are local companies, the third is an Internet-based shirt designer.

  • T-shirt World -- This local competitor specializes in silk-screening. 70% of their business is silk-screening with the remaining 30% sublimation. They require a minimum order of 10 with a 2-3 week lead time. This company only uses pre-existing designs for their silk-screening and for sublimations you must use their artist.
  • Shirt Shack -- This local retailer is geared toward organizations or teams with production runs of 20 or more. They do fairly good work but are rigid regarding custom work.
  • Design House -- This is an Internet-based retailer that primarily offers computer sublimations. Design House has a catalog of approximately 200 images for the customer to choose from. They do allow customers to use their own graphic. The quality of the sublimations is mediocre at best because they can only use off the shelf technology.

Another minor source of competition comes from home kits that turn your ink jet printer into a T-shirt making machine. While these kits do offer some competition, the image quality is not good, therefore this will only appeal to children or the home hobbyist, someone not very concerned with image quality.