“People can have the Model T in any color – so long as it’s black.” – Henry Ford.
What percentage of Fords on the road today are black?
Today, in our business, the shops and teams and events that are selling the most apparel are those with options – colors, designs, patterns, fabrics, etc.
To focus merely on the increased sales would be short sighted (bottom line addressed below).
Who buys your brand?
While we all love the hard core racer for the inspiration the rest of us receive, he or she rarely pays more than cost and usually less or not at all.
Why are they willing to pay to advertise you?
The rest, the people who pay, are your fans. They like you, they like your shop/team/event, they like what you represent and they have said “Count me in”… In other words, they want to show that they belong to your tribe.
Giving them a choice, a variety to choose from, allows your fans to express the membership in their own unique fashion.
Back to the bottom line. With the fragmentation of advertising today, growing the tribe is the best and cheapest way to increase the bottom line.
Apparel is just one piece part of the strategy and, if done correctly, can be quite profitable at the same time.
Here’s an example of doing it correctly – http://shop.mellowjohnnys.com/