A New Challenge for Creative Allies: Creating Brand Assets While Defining the Brand Itself

With Smack Talk Tees, the design community of Creative Allies has successfully launched a new venture and supplied the creative fuel for its actual offerings, smart apparel that appeals to the millennial generation.

The founders of Smack Talk posed a rather unique challenge for Creative Allies and its worldwide community of graphic designers: help us create our own brand while you create the text-based graphics for an entire line of T-shirts. Armed with a tagline—“Get It Off Your Mind and Put It on Your Chest”—our community got to work.

The success of the twin Smack Talk Tees contests harkened back to some of Creative Allies’ initial forays into consumer brands after dominating apparel and promotional merchandise design in the entertainment sector. After massive community interest and fan engagement for brands like Arizona Tea, which served as a source for follow-on work for the grand prize winner, each of Smack Talk’s contests generated more than 200 designs and tens of thousands of fan impressions—all during the brand’s actual creation.

“We created multiple winning opportunities for the contestants and the company alike,” said Phil Chamberlain, campaign manager at Creative Allies. “While Smack Talk could only have one logo winner, we’ve awarded already awarded two t-shirt design winners with the prospect of adding more. And better yet, the winning shirt designs also net a royalty percentage from each sale. For the client, Smack Talk, it’s a chance to see your brand launched with an engaged, passionate audience ready to buy and promote your product.”Just as Creative Allies’ entertainment-based contests generate excitement due to once-in-a-lifetime, “dream” opportunities for designers to work for their favorite artists, consumer brand contests result in heightened participation for an altogether different reason, according to Chamberlain. “It’s the realistic shot at not only winning, not only building a portfolio, but actually getting exposure and perhaps getting work directly from your involvement with Creative Allies and participating brands,” he said. “It’s the chance to show a company, ‘I get you. Let me show you how.’ And the quality produced by our community as a very high percentage of the submissions, shows the design power harnessed by the Creative Allies platform.”

Create merchandise and the brand itself? No problem for the design community at Creative Allies.

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