Do’s And Don’ts: Getting Your T-Shirts Reviewed

by liz on July 22, 2009

in t-shirt promotion

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The genesis for this article was an email I received a few days ago from a new clothing line (who shall rename nameless) that was also sent to about a dozen other blog owners in the industry. I know this for a fact because it the author of the email used CC instead of BCC, allowing myself and all the other addressees to see exactly who he had sent it to.

These types of emails are horrible for two reasons:

1. Unless everyone you’re emailing knows each other, CC is a great way to open up a can of spam – all it takes is 2-3 people hitting “reply all” and you’re suddenly stuck receiving endless emails that you can’t opt out of or stop. It’s literally a nightmare.

2. It’s “lazy marketing” (put so well by someone who responded to this latest email). You’re essentially appealing to a blog owner to take the time and effort to look at your products, and then compose a well-thought out (hopefully positive) review… But you can’t take the time to write them a personal email?

This was the second time in recent months that I received an email like this. I “replied all” on the first one with a very long, and very annoyed rant about the relative lack of consideration, so this time I thought I’d do something a little more productive…

In this article, you’ll find some do’s and don’ts for clothing lines (especially new ones) on emailing blog owners to get some press on your apparel. These tips won’t guarantee you a feature, but they’ll definitely increase your chances.

Do’s

  1. Do actually be a reader of the site you’re submitting to. Blog owners can easily be bribed with praise, and we’re more inclined to respond if we know you’re an actual reader. So tell us you enjoy reading the site, give us a suggestion to make it better, or just let us know you appreciate what we do.
  2. Do provide lots of information with your submission. At minimum, give us some nice product shots, the price, and link to buy. We can work with that. But if you tell us (don’t just copy and paste from your website) the story behind your line, or some interesting tidbit about another aspect of your company, we can build a more compelling story.
  3. Do offer a personalized coupon code. If you have the capability and you’re running a discount anyway, why not create a code specifically for blog you are submitting your tees to? These are great because it offers an incentive to buy for readers and give us a measure of authority too. We like personalized coupon codes – it makes us feel special. Plus, it’s a great way for you to know when you’re actually getting sales from a post.
  4. Do track who you email, and when. This is more for you, than us. But keeping track of who’ve you submitted to ensures that you can do follow-ups (after a reasonable amount of time) and also keeps you from emailing the same person twice.

Don’ts

  1. Don’t send canned messages. You’re asking for our time, so give us a little bit of yours. Fair is far, right? We’re also one of your best allies in reaching the masses, and we are generally huge fans of good clothing lines. This isn’t just a one shot thing, it’s your chance to build a relationship. And that will pay off down the line.
  2. Don’t feel obligated to send us a t-shirt. Yes, we solicit tees, but only for people who want to send them. Don’t feel like you need to send us stuff to get on the site. That said, if we have a physical t-shirt, we can talk about things like print quality, shirt feel, and packaging experience that’s simply impossible to do if we’re just looking at a website.
  3. Don’t get hurt or offended if we don’t respond to your email in a day… or even a week. As much as we’d love to say we respond to every single email we receive, there’s just not enough hours in the day. But we do read every single one of them. It may be a month before a submitted tee makes it to the site, but if it’s a compelling design, it will make it.

Got any suggestions that I missed? Share them below!

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{ 38 comments… read them below or add one }

henryv July 23, 2009 at 12:51 am

All of the above, and:

Don’t sign me up for your newsletter without asking me first.

and

Don’t expect us to write about it at all. If I like it, I’ll try and get round to blogging it. But please recognise that unlike you, emailer, it isn’t my job to sell t-shirts – I blog primarily as a hobby.

Saying that, some persistent companies have made it onto my blog through going above and beyond, by putting themselves into my shoes: offering things like personalised discount codes, affiliate programs, samples, reciprocal links and interviews.

Reply

henryv July 23, 2009 at 12:51 am

All of the above, and:

Don’t sign me up for your newsletter without asking me first.

and

Don’t expect us to write about it at all. If I like it, I’ll try and get round to blogging it. But please recognise that unlike you, emailer, it isn’t my job to sell t-shirts – I blog primarily as a hobby.

Saying that, some persistent companies have made it onto my blog through going above and beyond, by putting themselves into my shoes: offering things like personalised discount codes, affiliate programs, samples, reciprocal links and interviews.

Reply

henryv July 22, 2009 at 5:51 pm

All of the above, and:

Don’t sign me up for your newsletter without asking me first.

and

Don’t expect us to write about it at all. If I like it, I’ll try and get round to blogging it. But please recognise that unlike you, emailer, it isn’t my job to sell t-shirts – I blog primarily as a hobby.

Saying that, some persistent companies have made it onto my blog through going above and beyond, by putting themselves into my shoes: offering things like personalised discount codes, affiliate programs, samples, reciprocal links and interviews.

Reply

skilla July 23, 2009 at 4:28 am

Very good post!

Reply

skilla July 22, 2009 at 9:28 pm

Very good post!

Reply

Anthony July 23, 2009 at 2:43 pm

This is a good post alot of clothing companies should make sure they read this post.

Reply

Anthony July 23, 2009 at 7:43 am

This is a good post alot of clothing companies should make sure they read this post.

Reply

Darren Millar July 24, 2009 at 12:32 am

do set up a twitter… and follow me!!! http://twitter.com/regalclothing

D :)

Reply

Darren Millar July 23, 2009 at 5:32 pm

do set up a twitter… and follow me!!! http://twitter.com/regalclothing

D :)

Reply

Diesel Laws July 27, 2009 at 4:10 pm

I always give link backs when a company blogs about one of my designs (or even how crazy I am) – I pop it in my featured section (http://diesellaws.com/awards)

Good to now have PCT on the list :D

Oh, and i’m now following you on twitter Darren! (http://twitter.com/diesellaws is me for anyone who wants to know)

Reply

Diesel Laws July 27, 2009 at 9:10 am

I always give link backs when a company blogs about one of my designs (or even how crazy I am) – I pop it in my featured section (http://diesellaws.com/awards)

Good to now have PCT on the list :D

Oh, and i’m now following you on twitter Darren! (http://twitter.com/diesellaws is me for anyone who wants to know)

Reply

Brother Adam July 27, 2009 at 11:32 pm

Great Post…thanks guys!!

Reply

Brother Adam July 27, 2009 at 4:32 pm

Great Post…thanks guys!!

Reply

remi August 3, 2009 at 1:59 am

That’s is such a good and instructive topic.
I am at the point where i’ll be looking into blog to get some help in promoting that this post will be so helpfull…
Thanks

Remi
soulmighty.com

Reply

remi August 3, 2009 at 1:59 am

That’s is such a good and instructive topic.
I am at the point where i’ll be looking into blog to get some help in promoting that this post will be so helpfull…
Thanks

Remi
soulmighty.com

Reply

remi August 2, 2009 at 6:59 pm

That’s is such a good and instructive topic.
I am at the point where i’ll be looking into blog to get some help in promoting that this post will be so helpfull…
Thanks

Remi
soulmighty.com

Reply

sahril August 4, 2009 at 8:33 pm

hai, im just build an online store with comboutique,selling my own t-shirt design,& currently im wandering around the net. to find a way to promote my website,i dont event have idea to write article for blogging hehe..im blurr..
can you give simple tip,
the simple the better, im new..plz.

Reply

sahril August 4, 2009 at 8:33 pm

hai, im just build an online store with comboutique,selling my own t-shirt design,& currently im wandering around the net. to find a way to promote my website,i dont event have idea to write article for blogging hehe..im blurr..
can you give simple tip,
the simple the better, im new..plz.

Reply

sahril August 4, 2009 at 1:33 pm

hai, im just build an online store with comboutique,selling my own t-shirt design,& currently im wandering around the net. to find a way to promote my website,i dont event have idea to write article for blogging hehe..im blurr..
can you give simple tip,
the simple the better, im new..plz.

Reply

Rach & Bex August 26, 2009 at 11:44 am

Thank for the tips I tried writing a blog but wasn’t very good. I will take your advise when writing my next one. Thanks

Reply

Rach & Bex August 26, 2009 at 4:44 am

Thank for the tips I tried writing a blog but wasn’t very good. I will take your advise when writing my next one. Thanks

Reply

Kaos Distro September 2, 2009 at 6:07 am

wow.. nice tips.. I agree with you..

Reply

Kaos Distro September 2, 2009 at 6:07 am

wow.. nice tips.. I agree with you..

Reply

Kaos Distro September 1, 2009 at 11:07 pm

wow.. nice tips.. I agree with you..

Reply

Custom t-shirts October 5, 2009 at 8:38 am

Thanks for the post, this is really what all clothing companies need to know, i hope this post will be helpful for them and they can get better results after using these tips. thanks for sharing your knowledge with us.

Reply

Custom t-shirts October 5, 2009 at 8:38 am

Thanks for the post, this is really what all clothing companies need to know, i hope this post will be helpful for them and they can get better results after using these tips. thanks for sharing your knowledge with us.

Reply

Custom t-shirts October 5, 2009 at 1:38 am

Thanks for the post, this is really what all clothing companies need to know, i hope this post will be helpful for them and they can get better results after using these tips. thanks for sharing your knowledge with us.

Reply

Packing Supplies October 12, 2009 at 11:42 am

Thanks for great advice, I would say that it is very use full stuff for every one.

Regards,

Reply

Packing Supplies October 12, 2009 at 11:42 am

Thanks for great advice, I would say that it is very use full stuff for every one.

Regards,

Reply

Packing Supplies October 12, 2009 at 4:42 am

Thanks for great advice, I would say that it is very use full stuff for every one.

Regards,

Reply

Ash November 15, 2009 at 3:26 am

Great advice and tips. I was really putting this off because I wasn’t sure where to start so I’ll have to stop procrastinating and get started promoting to bloggers.

Cheers,

Ash
houseofvernon.com

Reply

Ash November 14, 2009 at 8:26 pm

Great advice and tips. I was really putting this off because I wasn’t sure where to start so I’ll have to stop procrastinating and get started promoting to bloggers.

Cheers,

Ash
houseofvernon.com

Reply

Custom t-shirts January 2, 2010 at 11:40 am

truly and well said…. its really important to take care of such tiny matters

Reply

matthew March 6, 2010 at 10:31 pm

here is an article from guy in san francisco who writes about the art business

he has the exact same issues you have mentioned in this article and the same suggestions . thought this useful as just adds to and supports your suggestions

http://www.artbusiness.com/artist_email_tips.html

Reply

Advertees March 24, 2010 at 3:22 pm

In advance and for the record I am now stating I read and love popculturetees, and in the event of us getting our act together and presenting a design we feel worthy of review, and indeed if we ever get around to creating a 'clothing line' we will send a Tee, obviously not a bribe in any way. If we are ignored we will remember to direct any anger and resentment towards every one around us rather than in your direction. :)

Reply

popculturetees March 24, 2010 at 4:08 pm

hah — thanks dude! Appreciate you reading the site and the bit about anger/resentment redirection ;)

Reply

T shirt printing April 22, 2011 at 12:49 pm

Hey this is fantastic I’ll make sure to implement this in our t shirt printing and clothing line!

Reply

The OC Mafia March 9, 2012 at 5:22 am

The same basic principles could be used for those seeking to do collaborations. Which by the way is an effective means to market yourself as well, since many clothing companies are avid blogger/content producers themselves.

Reply

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