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Hey all,

Attempting to construct a business plan for our t-shirt (and apparel) business (well, it's almost a business).

I am trying to justify reasons for why the t-shirts will sell. I know they can sell but what evidence can I gather to support my theory? We have sold t-shirts but not officially. How else can i convince funding sources that our t-sirts can and will sell?

Can I get sales forecasts from other companies etc?

Any ideas?

Thanks again!

theydnamix
 

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Yes, you can. But if you want good info, you're going to have to pay for it.

www.hoovers.com
www.infomat.com
www.apparelsearch.com (you're going to have to search on their site for it. I forgot exactly what section that put links to that stuff at.)
www.marketresearch.com

These are a few off the top of my head. I'm going to have to ask my beautiful Vice President/Director of Marketing for some more. She's great at this kind of stuff! She's also pretty smart (she married me didn't she?!):D
 

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Hehe, lucky guy! You're married to your very own company Vice president ;). I bet you're experiencing exciting times what with your business rallied to start v soon! I envy you! Wish I could fast forward to a latter stage and skip the prep. work. This planning stuff is really bothering me.

Back on topic.. I hate paying for things, though I appreciate your time in finding me those links. I'll check them out and consider the costs.

While we're here... Can anyone recommend any other ways I might be able to convince cash injection sources through my business plan?

Thank you as aways.
 

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Can anyone recommend any other ways I might be able to convince cash injection sources through my business plan?
You could try your local SBA (Small Business Association) office. And there's always Visa/Mastercard/American Express. They don't care about a business plan :D
 

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You should consentrate on the demographics of your area in that section of your business plan. Like if your shirts will be marketed towards college kids, then is your location near a college? How many other businesses are in the area selling tshirts? Are your tshirts different from all the others? Things like this will take you far in the bankers mind I think. Convince them that the college kids in that area need your store and your clothes because all the other guys are selling crappy designs that the kids arent interested in.
Something along this line may help you out, but I dont no really.
Im kinda in the same boat as you. I want to open a store in my area selling my shirts and body jewlery, gothic type nick nacks and such. I live in small town and no one sells anything like that around here. I am currently writing up my business plan to. Thats why your thread here caught my attention.
 

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Being in Marketing for about 2 years, I've learned alot about positioning your products. And spending money to make money is a big part of jump starting your company. Paying for ad space, web banners, google ads and such.

I started my click-n-mortar T-shirt business back in Feb 06 with Cafepress and I've chosen to market my shop with only personal time. I wear my products, had business cards printed (www.48hourprint.com) which I leave in all kinds of places. I put them on the mail box board and they fly off the wall. Either people take them, or someone building a strange house of cards.

I've built a email list so when I launch a new design, I do an email blast announcing it. I register my site with alot of search engines, I brand as many things as possible.

I join forums and make sure my signature advertises my site. I affiliate with people with banners, I point my site to my store. I talk up my shirts and on and on.

I'm basically a T-shirt Pimp.

www.entrepreneur.com is a great place for FREE info on all kinds of stuff including Business Plans.

Hope that helps.
 

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thedynamix said:
Can anyone recommend any other ways I might be able to convince cash injection sources through my business plan?
friends and family

take on a partner to split costs (while you're at it, one with skills or an area of expertise that will help the business)

cash in 401k (not advised unless you're comfortable losing it)

rob a bank (just plain not advised)
 

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when I opened an Ice Cream store back in the early 70's after I worked as a training director for Baskin and Robbins for 6 years. I had this idea.. but not a lot of money. I went to the bank and the VP told me something that I have passed along since. The bank wanted a business plan.. I had something but it was not enough. he told me to contact Stanford U. as I lived in Palo Alto at the time and see their business teachers about having a business student do a business plan on my concept. I did. The student did his report for grade and the bank loved the idea I had and loaned me the money.. then my ex wife left me took the money. My Air conditioner broke in the middle of summer and the business around me started closing at the mall and the mall is now Hewlett Packard. I still have pictures of the store..
 

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thedynamix said:
While we're here... Can anyone recommend any other ways I might be able to convince cash injection sources through my business plan?
Identify your target market. Are we talking 1000 people or are we talking 10,000,000 people.

Identify they're spending habits on similiar items within the same general interest category.

Identify how you are going to penetrate your market. Project your market penetration. That means you're going to need a marketing plan as well, how do you intend to make potential customers aware of your product? And, how are you going to persuade potential customers that your product is better then the competition's?

Estimate a reasonable amount of sales based on your target market, your projected market penetration, and your company's capacity. (I went with estimating annual sales based on being able to initially penetrate 1% of my target market of 500,000 people, that's an average of 13 shirts a day, which is doable for me from a manufacturing standpoint. Although it is probably a bit optimistic...)

When you look at all these numbers in relation to one another, it gives you (and a prospective money lender) a good idea of how you plan to make it all work. You know who your customers are and how much they spend. You also know who your competitors are and have a reasonable idea of how much market share you can take from them. But you've tied it all back to something that you can actually produce, from a manufacturing and logistics standpoint.

You'll end up with a projected financial statement summary
 

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Studio490 said:
www.entrepreneur.com is a great place for FREE info on all kinds of stuff including Business Plans.

i second this idea. i used some frequent flyer miles that were just collecting dust on a subscription and was surprised at how much i learned from that magazine.

the entreprenuerial experience is pretty universal, so there's a lot to learn from people who have started up all kinds of businesses.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thasnks for your points. V helpful indeed.

Just need some clarification though.. How would I go about broadly providing an overview of the potential customer base? I guess you could say we are targeting the younger, 'hip meets urban' type market, but I am sure our t-shirts can and will be bought and worn by all sorts.

And also, how can I provide evidence of buying trends within this 'hip' fashion market?

I don't quite [email protected] Should I speak to owners of existing similarly orientated t-shirt sellers who primarly sell through e-commerce?

Sorry for the abstract questions but just trying to understand.. Aiming for a top-notch plan.

Thanks again all! So helpful this far.

thedynamix
 

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the entreprenuerial experience is pretty universal, so there's a lot to learn from people who have started up all kinds of businesses.
How true. As someone once said - there's nothing new under the sun. Good ideas are good ideas no matter where they come from.
 

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If you came to me with a proposal to invest/fund your project, I would look for 3 general things. 1. The you have a plan (marketing, production, etc) 2. If I believe in YOU (your passion, knowledge, that you will follow through, etc) and 3. If I believe the plan you have in place will work.

Of course I would look at all the details but those are the main things. Meaning, if you came to me and said "Hey, I have this idea for tshirts...and the target market is..." If I believed that your target market was legit and that you had a firm strategy to reach them that would be a strong foundation. Also, t-shirts are more concrete so if there is a certain style that is consistently worn you can show examples of the people wearing this shirt (i.e. some celebrities or just certain geographical areas).

I hope this helps.
 

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Hey all,

Attempting to construct a business plan for our t-shirt (and apparel) business (well, it's almost a business).

I am trying to justify reasons for why the t-shirts will sell. I know they can sell but what evidence can I gather to support my theory? We have sold t-shirts but not officially. How else can i convince funding sources that our t-sirts can and will sell?

Can I get sales forecasts from other companies etc?

Any ideas?

Thanks again!

theydnamix


everyone owns a t-shirt

thats why!

but, its all about your design and brand, hope your target market likes it....

video tape your market, and show that to the investors
 

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Hi,

Like someone already mentioned abut going to a university business dept for help is a really great idea! Not only do they have access to a plethora of information and databases most businesses have to pay an arm and a leg for but like previously stated they might be able to do you plan as an assignment. Furthermore, since those students are part of your target market you can do some kind of T-shirt collaboration with the school or department that will get you brand promotion.

Additionally I found some information on consumer spending heres the link:

Consumer Expenditure Survey Home Page

Rod
 

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Hi,

Like someone already mentioned abut going to a university business dept for help is a really great idea! Not only do they have access to a plethora of information and databases most businesses have to pay an arm and a leg for but like previously stated they might be able to do you plan as an assignment. Furthermore, since those students are part of your target market you can do some kind of T-shirt collaboration with the school or department that will get you brand promotion.

Additionally I found some information on consumer spending heres the link:

Consumer Expenditure Survey Home Page

Rod

Do you know if there's something like this in Canada? Thanks!
 
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