Two t-shirt screen printing companies have come together to build a unique new crowdfunding platform. Traxler Custom Printing purchased DFC Screen Printing and with it came owner Jason Case and his idea for TStacker. The low-risk crowdfunding platform allows organizations to create and pre-sell t-shirts to raise money.
“I also have a large customer base that needs the exact same thing,” says Traxler Custom Printing Owner Zach Traxler. He had always wanted to do something like it, but it was more of a down the road plan.
The two now co-own TStacker and call it a perfect partnership. The platform that lowers the barrier to entry for groups that need shirts has already garnered national attention.
“It’s really easy,” Case says of the details. “You can design your shirt in our design studio, or if you have graphic design experience, you can upload your own design.” The step-by-step design studio offers a plethora of options, with the campaign organizer choosing everything from product to color to the placement of the artwork on the t-shirt. Users can also call TStacker for some help if they find design just isn’t their thing.
With the design finalized, organizers then set up their detailed campaign page with a goal of how many shirts they want to sell. Once finalized, it’s up to the organizer to promote the campaign. But, the platform has built-in features that make it easier. TStacker automatically generates flyers with a QR code to take backers straight to a campaign.
All campaigns must reach a minimum of 25 shirts to be successful.
“If they don’t sell 25, nobody is charged,” Case says. “If they meet their goal, let’s say they set a goal for 100 shirts, they don’t have to sell that many to make that campaign successful as long as they sell the minimum of 25.”
A system algorithm will also give campaign creators an estimated profit. Traxler says just how much profit is determined by the cost of their shirt which is influenced by factors like what the design is being printed on and graphics placement. But, “We always make it so that they are going to make profit off of it,” Case adds.
After campaigns run for a max of 28 days, it’s on to printing.
“We try to get them out as fast as possible,” Traxler says. “Ideally we try to get this all done and out the door within 10 days of the campaign completing.” Organizers can choose individual or bulk shipping if they would prefer to hand out the t-shirts themselves. Bulk shipping is free.
“They have the ability to maximize their profit a little bit more there,” Traxler says.
The idea for TStacker started primarily as a fundraising site. While at DFC, Case identified groups of customers that needed more flexibility with pricing – non-profits, schools, booster clubs, etc.
“In all those instances they don’t have the money up front,” he explains. But now, the possibilities seem endless.
“I think it’s pretty much open-ended to anybody,” Case says. For example, the owners also see it as useful for budding designers that don’t have the cash to start their own line. Instead they could essentially start a line of t-shirts with their own designs or artwork through TStacker. A rebranding is in the works to open the platform up from its organization-heavy focus now.
While campaigns directly raise money for an organization or designer, the t-shirts themselves bring a whole new level of brand awareness.
“The life of a t-shirt is between seven and 10 years, so you’ve got seven to 10 years worth of impressions on somebody’s back versus a $5 acquisition on a like for your Facebook page, and there is zero money up front,” Traxler says.
For more information, visit tstacker.com.