We caught up with Rob, journalist, writer and creator of Very British Problems to hear about how he’s pitched his products to his social media following, and how the products create even more social media content that generated a huge following. We take a look at how Rob created a positive circle of followers, content and customers that helped the Very British Problems store become an established part of the Twitterverse and take away some starting points you can try to boost engagement with your brand.
Pic Calum Lewis c/o Unsplash
Hey Rob. Thanks for chatting to us. Why did you decide to start selling clothing?
Well two reasons really: The primary reason was to contribute to the efforts of covering up topless men in supermarkets come summertime. Secondary reasons include expanding the @SoVeryBritish (Very British Problems) brand and helping people from all over the world to display their awkwardness with pride.
Great to hear someone’s sorting point one out. Where did the idea to sell tees come from?
I’d probably thought about making t-shirts at some point, but no doubt got scared off by the fear of how much work it might be. Turns out I was right. It is a lot of work. But luckily Teemill do it all.
For me the three big “yes!” factors in choosing Teemill were the quality of the products, from the designs and the material, to the packaging and customer service.
Importantly they’re made with lower impact materials and print in the UK in a wind-powered factory. I don’t think it’s what makes my followers buy tees, orders come as a result of posting regularly about the products and having designs that they love. But it does create a great reaction when people put the product on the first time or realise how high quality the product is. They are surprised, and often come back for more.
What sets Teemill apart is the fact pretty much everything you want can be customised whilst everything I need is automated, so people don’t even know my store is powered by Teemill and yet it was super easy to set up and run.
Also, the analytical tools are extremely detailed – there’s more graphs and data than you can shake a protractor at.
Awesome. What has been the reaction of your followers?
It’s really great when people post pictures to @SoVeryBritish when their package arrives. It’s lovely to see people say “it’s arrived!” and to see Teemill has included a personal hand-written message.
What’s your favourite thing about selling clothing online with Teemill?
There’s a lot of innovation. If there’s a new bit of tech, analytical software or anything like that, Teemill is on it fast. Everything always feels like it’s being improved in an effort to get the best possible product to the customer and increase sales. Plus it’s a pleasure working and collaborating with everyone on the team.
The biggest advantage of using Teemill is just to know that whoever buys a t-shirt is going to get the best quality product and a faultless customer service experience.
It’s a hassle-free experience for me and for the @SoVeryBritish followers.
Why do you think your t-shirts have been so popular?
There’s a lot of fondness for the Teemill Store from the @SoVeryBritish supporters. I think because a lot of the Very British Problems t-shirts have messages on them that allow the wearer to say what they’re thinking (things like “go away”) that they may not feel comfortable saying to people with their mouths. It’s an easy, less confrontational way for awkward people to get things off their chests, ironically by displaying something on their chests.
Thanks for your time Rob. What is it like knowing there are thousands of people out there wearing your designs?
Delightful. Though I’ll probably never actually see a shirt in the wild because Very British Problems fans never go out without a fully zipped-up waterproof jacket.