Some of you may have already noticed the rather large ad in the sidebar for Secret Identity: Geek Gear and Gifts, my Cafepress store. I started it in the summer of 2005, and have really enjoyed creating and marketing designs to fellow comic book and sci-fi fanboys (and fangirls and, surprisingly, fan babies).
Entering the world of Cafepress was a little overwhelming at first, but with the advice and guidance of a coworker, it all started coming together. After a few attempts at some generic designs to appeal to various hobbies, I decided to tackle the hobby I actually participated in and knew something about: comic books. My initial take was to create designs that had a more classic, retro feel to them, using imagery that evoked the more primitive printing techniques of the time, or the more bombastic style of storytelling popular in the comics of my youth.
Later on, I added designs that might appeal to a wider audience (such as the girlfriends, wives and children of my fellow geeks), and have actually been quite surprised to see that women are my largest customer base. Since comic book collecting is so overwhelmingly (and depressingly) male, I assumed my customer base would be as well. Wrong!
That's just one example of the learning process that's characterized my first year selling on Cafepress. It's exciting being part of the new 21st century way of marketing a product, and I'm always looking to learn more about it.
As my readers, and (possibly) customers of Secret Identity, I welcome any feedback and suggestions for what you'd like to see in comics-oriented t-shirts and gifts.
Whether shopping in my store, or reading the blog, I hope you enjoy what you see.