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I finally have everything(except inventory) in place to launch my tshirt line. Now that its mid august Im thinking that is it a smart idea to launch going into the fall/winter season? I'm debating whether or not I should just wait and launch in sprin2011. Has anyone had success with this, or fail because of this?
 

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If you are planning an expensive marketing and advertising launch, then I can see wanting to wait for the best possible timing.

But if your launch is fairly modest, then why wait? T-shirts are pretty standard and can be worn year round. And since they are non-perishable, there is no risk in them going bad. If you sell through your inventory during the Fall/Winter season, you can always re-launch with new designs for the Spring/Summer. If you don't sell through, just continue to sell the same inventory during the next season.

Another option would be to start by launching with long sleeve t-shirts, thermals or hoodies. But make sure you can sell through, otherwise you will still have them in stock and need to spend more money on t-shirts for the Spring.

This is all based on selling directly to the consumer. If you are planning to launch by selling to retailers, then now is the time to sell to them for Spring/Summer. Typically, buyers purchase in the Fall for February delivery to have on the shelf for Spring.
 

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Launch, launch, launch. As soon as you can.

Large companies with marketing budgets can afford to wait and do coordinated launches with associated marketing. As a new start up odds are you have limited resources and no existing network to publicize your brand.

Among the reasons why launching asap is in your favor:
1) every sale you make brings you needed revenue and a new customer.
2) if you are just starting you need to be sure you have perfected your shipping procedures, your accounting, deal with returns and any other unexpected problems that can come up with a new business. You don't want to have any problems when you do a bigger marketing push. If you are successful you need to spend your time conducting business, not learning how to work your processes and dealing with problems.
3) we all want the web to work for us and provide a viral effect. You don't know which customers are going to be key in helping make that happen and every customer should have value to you. Capture every one you can as soon as you can. It also takes time for social media and on line tools to catch on and the sooner you start the better.

Launch now and think of it as a beta period, plan a marketing campaign for a time that makes sense for you and you will be better prepared to deal with what will hopefully be a positive response.
 
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