A Word About Wearing Vendor-Branded Shirts

Posted by David Chism | Mon, Mar 19, 2018

 A Word About Wearing Vendor-Branded Shirts
When I was a kid, I loved it when my dad would come home from work and hand me a local paint sup­pli­er’s t‑shirt. The back would usu­al­ly have some Hawai­ian-style cars, motor­cy­cles, desert, beach, or surf design on it. Frazee Paint, Dunn-Edwards, and Vista Paints were all very pop­u­lar when I was grow­ing up in San Diego. The shirts were free, so not only did I enjoy wear­ing them, but my dad’s paint crew would also get in on the action. If they got too much paint or caulk on them, they’d go to the paint store and get anoth­er free shirt! Why not? It’s free, right? 

Invest In Your Own Brand!

Even if you are try­ing to save every pen­ny when start­ing a paint­ing com­pa­ny, don’t go the route of rely­ing on your paint ven­dor to sup­ply your shirts. All you are doing is help­ing them with their mar­ket­ing efforts and miss­ing your own oppor­tu­ni­ty in the process. I have no prob­lem if you wear them on the week­ends and/​or out­side work hours. When your team is on a project, how­ev­er, it is your brand that needs to be front-and-cen­ter at all times. I know it sounds like a lit­tle thing, but the lit­tle things real­ly do matter! I would even go a step fur­ther and make your shirts pop! I have seen more paint­ing and home improve­ment com­pa­nies invest in vibrant shirts instead of the stan­dard white. It can get a lit­tle expen­sive if you go the non-white route, but brand­ing real­ly is every­thing! And, as you wear your brand around town with con­sis­ten­cy, you’ll be amazed by how many peo­ple begin to notice! If you get cre­ative (like Dunn-Edwards did with their gear), your cus­tomers will want to wear it, too. [cap­tion id=“attachment_3837” align=“alignright” width=“400”] Pho­to Cred­it: VoyageLA[/caption] A few years ago, All­bright Paint­ing did a logo redesign and updat­ed their hats and shirts. They also added Los Ange­les, CA” on the gear. It did not take long before some local high school stu­dents were reach­ing out want­i­ng to wear their shirts and hats. Talk about brand expo­sure! My Dad stopped wear­ing ven­dor shirts around the mid-90s. One day he went to vis­it a job to check on his crew. When he drove up, he saw anoth­er paint com­pa­ny doing the house next door. The painters on that project looked scruffy and dirty, and they worked out of a non-brand­ed vehi­cle. He thought to him­self, My guys look way bet­ter and more pro­fes­sion­al!” Then he looked at his own team and real­ized that, in all hon­esty, they looked the same. He began to won­der what the dif­fer­ence real­ly was between his com­pa­ny and the painters next door. Why would a home­own­er choose his crew over the oth­er guy? It was around that time that he took brand­ing seri­ous­ly, man­dat­ing a con­sis­tent, clear, clean image: com­pa­ny-let­tered trucks, hats, yard signs, clean com­pa­ny shirts, and so forth. That was the begin­ning of sol­id growth for Chism Broth­ers Paint­ing, rein­forc­ing the fact that how you present your­self in your mar­ket is impor­tant. Don’t look like the oth­er guy,” but wear your brand with con­fi­dence! I would love to hear your sto­ry about how you’ve made deci­sions to grow your brand using com­pa­ny shirts, hats, and oth­er gear. Let me know on one of the social sites or via email. Thanks for reading!

About David Chism

David Chism started his business out of a passion for helping small contracting businesses grow, be more profitable and become better known to their target clients. One lifelong hobby of David is using techie gadgets. So this blog is a place where he writes about technology, marketing ideas, just for fun (humor), personal thoughts on small business and more.


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