If you’re wondering how companies can use t-shirts to grow their users and build a community, then you need to check out ClickFunnels. It’s a service to help you build any kind of marketing funnel for your website. They’ve clearly thought about it a huge amount, and baked t-shirts into this part of their customer acquisition process from the very start. They’re very smart in using t-shirts to get more users.
t-shirts are a huge part of how they have built a great community around their 48,000 users.
I caught up with Dave Woodward, ClickFunnels’ Chief Business Development Officer, to find a little bit more about their super-smart incentive, and how it works for them.
Last summer, we were invited to take part in a week-long programme at Google Campus where, along with several other startups, we were given access to some of Google’s finest minds and insights.
It was a brilliant week that helped us refine a lot of the thinking we’d been doing over the previous months. And I’m only being slightly facetious when I say that one of the highlights was the free Google swag. Being the mighty world-beating behemoth that they are, they don’t do things by halves. And what we were given helped me crystalise my thinking around the benefits of promotional merchandise.
Keen IO are a San Francisco startup that makes it easy to create real-time data applications through the use of their API. What this means in non-tech terms is that 60,000 people use Keen IO APIs to capture, analyze, and embed data analytics into their products. It allows them to use all this data and present it in a usable way, through graphs, charts, tables etc.
Because they’re a technical product, their primary users tend to be developers. And to engage their audience they’ve hidden* a brilliant free t-shirt Easter egg in their API documentation – for our non-technical readers, this is the “manual” that their users must consult to know how to implement Keen IO’s code properly.
We all approve of motivated, engaged teams, right? Like this lovely bunch of humans from Bold.
Whether you’re a team member or someone who’s managing a team, having a group of people who enjoy working together in concerted way is absolutely critical to success. If your team isn’t harmonious and effective, you hugely limit your chance of achieving the team’s aims.
Or, to put it in another way:
“When you’re growing..[….]..the biggest challenge is getting the founders to understand that the team is the product”.
Thankfully there’s been a huge amount of research into how to improve performance, motivation, and job satisfaction in teams and organisations. There’s certainly not a one-size-fits-all approach, but there are some simple things that you can do in a quick and cost-effective way make your team’s life a little bit more fun and efficient.
One such way is through having a team uniform. And in our case, team t-shirts.
Firstly, we’re not saying you should provide a compulsory uniform of daily t-shirts for your team. While that certainly is a good potential approach in some sectors (e.g. catering and hospitality), many types of team will prefer to save the t-shirts for optional wear, or for special occasions like team-building or conferences.
But whether it’s every day, or once a year, there’s plenty of evidence that a uniform or a great t-shirt can bond your team, make everyone feel more valued. And make them better at their job!
Are branded t-shirts a justified marketing expense and one of the best best adwords alternative? There’s an endless stream of other things you could spend that money on – Facebook advertising, PPC, print, direct mail, you name it.
Now, I’ve never seen anybody dressed in a Google Adwords campaign, but a well-designed and well thought out company t-shirt can be a devastatingly effective and versatile business tool.
But here’s the big question – are t-shirts just a vanity thing, or are they actually worth investing money in? And are they really a better advertising medium than Facebook or Google?