Mass customisations – for a teeny price

Ok, my new fave place to shop online is www.threadless.com. Introduced to me by my 22 year old assistant (when did I get so old?) this site is a fantastic example of “zero budget” going big business – as in US$20 million turnover big business.

For those who haven’t been there, they have tonnes of wanna be designers submit designs for the threadless community to vote on – adding a bizarre MASS to CUSTOMISATION. They print the “winning” designs, and pay the winners a flat fee of $2,000. This gives the designers some cash and cred – and gives the brand the license to print thousands of tees for a fraction of what it would take to pay for each design as a commission. Plus, the variety is amazing – you’re tapping into your customers to design and decide what they’re going to buy – so you’ve got literally THOUSANDS of people in your creative team. But you’re not paying for them…see the genius here?

So next time you are faced with a tight product development or marketing budget, have a think about how else you can generate content, designs, creative, etc? The web means you’ve got a real opportunity to have your market generate your content for you…for pretty much nothing!

ps. Plus, this is a good present shopping option – I bought 11 for people for xmas for $10 each…
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