Teespring evolves to become the link between creators and commerce, with its rebrand to Spring
The pandemic has accelerated the digitization of our society and many accompanying shifts in consumer behavior. The ‘creator’ economy — that of online content creation and surrounding monetization reached fever pitch in 2020. There has been a global explosion of independent creators harnessing the power of their self-built online communities that have deep affinity to their subject matter. Whether it be Moriah Elizabeth and her 5.8m weekly crafters on YouTube or Sadie Aldis with her 128k followers on TikTok, online creator and fan engagement is happening in front of us every day.
Creators publish digital content which forms our online world, with 720,000 hours of video content uploaded (to YouTube alone) every day. It also translates to commerce with 83% of consumers trusting ‘digital word of mouth’ above content produced by brands. For the past 3 years, Teespring, the commerce platform, has been powering ways in which creators build and scale their commerce businesses, cultivated through it’s industry-first partnerships with YouTube, Twitch and TikTok. The business itself has come on a transformative journey as an ecommerce leader, doing over $1bn in lifetime sales since inception. Its repositioning to become Spring is a declarative statement of the business’ direction to be a platform that bridges commerce and creators.
The move to Spring is founded on an authentic mission of inviting an inclusive community of verified creators of every type, audience and social following, to leverage the platform to create and sell products with their industry-leading social platform integrations. Captured simply as, Create with Spring. Sell on Social.
Spring’s CEO, Chris Lamontagne says, “Our shift to become Spring is a significant moment for our company. We have been on this journey for the past couple of years, learning from our early ecommerce experience to putting a flag in the ground for creators. We see amazing creators starting meaningful businesses on Spring every day and our new identity allows us to become a place where they can create, build and scale with us.”
Redefining the brand has been a 6+ month process that was centred on a core thesis of the simplification of value proposition. Moving from Teespring to Spring with a focus on supporting, elevating and propelling creators forward.
Through the evolution of the creator economy, Spring has been there at every step. This first began with the announcement of Teespring’s industry-first commerce feature with YouTube in 2018. This move was arguably a catalyst in fueling the abilities of not just creators and influencers, but social platforms themselves in providing new monetization capabilities. Following this, Teespring continued to operate behind the scenes, to further facilitate creator revenue generation by powering features which allow creators to sell products via social channels including TikTok, Twitch, Instagram and Discord. By demonstrating a continued commitment to the creator community, with an overall elevation of the entire service proposition, redefining the platform is only highlighting what has been a natural evolution of capabilities and focus.
“Our platform partnerships like Youtube and TikTok have been and will continue to be instrumental to our strategy. Our partners inspire us to be even more committed and engaged with our creator community – who we have spent thousands of hours with through our rebrand process. That is how Spring was born,” says CEO, Chris Lamontagne.
Spring recognises the term ‘creator’ is progressive and somewhat undefined, accounting for a vast group of differentiated individuals and messages. Creators push the boundaries and unleash their unique skill sets through expressive content promoting community, and fandom. To protect both creators and their customers, Spring is making a deliberate shift from ‘content’ to ‘creator’ in choosing to actively support and promote verified (with social handles) creators. This shift is also to prohibit and protect communities from offensive content.
At the beginning of 2021, Spring has 450,000 verified (by social handles) creators on it’s platform. 2020 saw a spike of activity, with new creator growth exploding by 135%, alongside a 92% growth in the number of creators who are actively selling their products through the platform.
Spring’s vision is to become the world’s leading creator commerce platform. Alongside the brand, the business is making a number strategic changes across product, service and quality. Led by new VP Marketing, Les Green (formerly of Nike), Spring engaged directly with creators to understand their needs and make sweeping changes to launch with this new proposition.
“Over the last 6+ months, we spoke to lots of creators directly, as we wanted to know exactly what they are seeking from our platform. This allowed us to not just evolve our brand identity, but also make significant tangible changes that provided them with greater control, better support, and higher quality products,” says Les Green, Spring VP, Marketing
Platform Changes in 2021:
‘Social Stores’ with custom domains
Every creator will have their own fully branded ‘social store’ with their own custom domain, where they can host all of their product and seamlessly connect to their social channels.
Sell Downloadable Products
An evolution from apparel and accessories, every creator can now sell their own digital products including e-books, Lightroom photo filters and audio files.
Premium Support Services
For creators that need more support there are Dedicated Strategic Partner Managers or SPM’S, Custom Product Sourcing & Fulfillment, 24/7 Chat Support, and Personal Design Services available.
Wider social commerce is set to become a $607bn industry by 2027 growing at 32% CAGR (compound annual growth rate), with creator commerce playing a fundamental role in this growth. Spring’s new positioning sets the business up as a leader in space. The business became profitable in 2018 and is growing organically at 50% YoY and has international ambitions in the next 12/18 months.