At Animazement, I ran into a pwecious fellow on Sunday. He was insistent upon getting a Deal for his daughter, as it was Lastday for the con, and clearly would have NO opportunity at making Profit afterwards. He was chunky, with a shock of short salt-and-pepper hair, with matching moustache. J.Jonah Jameson gone to seed. I dub him Alfie Chunkybum. He proceeded to lecture me on how to run my business. I asked him his business. He said "Sales and Marketing". MLM or used cars is my bet. He patted a shirt: They don't care about this. He pointed to the design "They buy this."
Paging Captain Obvious.
THEN he pointed to our Aardvark copyright mark. "They don't come here for you." Ahem. People absolutely buy from us because of who we are. The Aardvarks have a shockingly large fan base, and people DO in fact come to us because we are Aardvark. I so informed him, whereupon he backpedaled a half-step, then plunged ahead undeterred. Our prices are too high. "I can get you the same shirt for fifty cents.
I handed him my card. "If you can get me this quality shirt for fifty cents, I'm your oyster!". I have not heard from Alfie. The shirts he was describing I am quite familiar with, from China or Points South shrink enormously when washed, and are skimpily-sized, to boot. We have experienced a large section of the shirty spectrum, and have settled with Gildan and Anvil shirts as substrates for our work, because they are good enough to be associated with Aardvark.
I get what I pay for. My customers get what I pay for. Mr.Chunkybum, would you think kindly of me if the shirt you just bought for your daughter drew up a full size when she washed it? Would she think kindly of me? That's what would happen with your fifty-cent shirt.
I would rather sell 1000 people 10,000 shirts over a decade, than sell them a cheap shirt the first year for a little extra profit, and have them never purchase from me again. Your fifty-cent shirts would cost me those 9000 additional shirt sales.
They know our name, they know our quality. They know that when I have seen one of our designs washing out, I have given them a replacement.
So flog your soap, your cheap shirts, and whatever other flea-market goodies you market. Yours was not a pitch for the angels, but rather one from warmer climes.