Tuesday, November 26, 2013
I was over reading the crazy Mrs Woog and how her t-shirts got printed with the wrong logo and it made me think about the whole crazy idea of branded clothing. I left a comment saying how I love branded clothing and all its wanky-ness. Because I do. The thought processes that go into designing them, how to distribute them and the want of them by people is intriguing.
The concept always works. Marketers decide to turn people into walking billboards and the people fight for the chance to do it, for free.
Brands like Billabong and Rip Curl perfected this so well that people started to pay huge cash to be able to be the billboard for them. Teenagers LOVE paying to be walking billboards. If it was the 90s you might have seen me paying my pocket money out each fortnight to be in an Espirit top and carrying a Sportsgirl bag, I would have loved to have the Country Road towel too, but I never saved up enough.
Back to the freebie marketing branded merchandise. If you ever watch home renovation shows and look at the staff helping in the background they are all wearing Bob's Plumbing or Jane's Painting t-shirts, the phone numbers are in BIG letters and they most likely have tops for people to 'win' later on.
Law firms and accountants 'sponsor' netball teams. When I say sponsor, I mean someone drags out ten t-shirts from the marketing cupboards and gives the team a branded top to wear and they call themselves the Suits R Us team. Every week other people see them and say "that's the Suits R Us team", they see the logo and they get a weekly reminder of where to go should they find themselves in the shit and need a lawyer.
While I was at uni I worked in a bar. We were given new t-shirts to wear from alcohol companies every second week. Usually they were in size extra extra large and the bouncers would be thrilled as they got stacks of t-shirts. Us girls pouring drinks had to tie them at the back and get that skanky bar maid look going on. These nights always increased sales in that particular brand of drink. Free t-shirts for staff = reminders of a certain bevvie to drinkers + a few free t-shirts to give out during the night = Profits.
Branded t-shirts are like a uniform for men to wear when mowing the lawn on Sunday in the suburbs. They are used to plug holes in pipes or clean the dog. No need to buy new night wear when you have a drawer of logo t-shirts to wear, they are perfect for sleeping in.
My favourite story about a branded t-shirt is my sisters. While some women go out and waste a $100 on something floral, fancy and feminine to wear for the birth of their baby, this is really not necessary. The logo t-shirt is the perfect option. Huge enough to wear over your preggy belly, happily thrown out the next day and totally free.
And that is how my first nephew arrived in this world. With his Mum happily wearing a t-shirt provided from days working behind the bar years beforehand, that screamed Galliano Liquer!
Have you got any branded t-shirt stories? Are you still paying to be a walking billboard for someone?