Now Hiring: Professional T-Shirt Wearers
CNBC.com News Editor
If you know how to use a computer and can rock a T-Shirt, here’s a job for you!
Jason Sadler — the guy who created his own job, mid-recession, wearing T-shirts for a living — is looking to hire four new professional T-Shirt wearers for 2011.
“The biggest value isn’t in the amount of people who see the shirts — it’s the engagement,” Sadler explained. “It’s like, ‘Hey, guys, check this out!’”
So, that makes him, what, like the Kim Kardashian of T-shirts?
(Kardashian is said to get $10,000 per Tweetfor endorsing products.)
“I’m a little bit sexier than Kim Kardashian!” Sadler quips.
It seemed like a bold move to start a business during a recession but Sadler may have hit the market with his idea at a perfect time: Companies have been slashing their marketing budgets but at the same time, increasing their social media presence.
Social media is expected to grow to 18 percent of companies' budgetswithin the next five years — that's three times as much as it is right now — according to a recent survey by Duke University and the American Marketing Association.
Sadler started his business in 2009, hired a second T-shirt wearer for 2010 and now he’s looking to hire four more for 2011.
To find his new hires for next year, Sadler took a page out of the “Best Job In the World” handbook and launched an online contest, where applicants submit a “YouTube video resume,” explaining why they'd be a great professional T-shirt wearer. But it doesn't stop there: They also have to demonstrate their social media prowess by getting their friends to comment on their video, rate it, etc.
Companies will pay anywhere from $5 to $1,825 per day to contract the fleet of T-shirt wearers to don their logos. It's a sliding scale, so it starts at $5 for Jan. 1 ($1 per person) and goes up $5 each day, so that's $10 for Jan. 2, $15 for Jan. 3, until Dec. 31, when it’s $1,825.
When he started the business with just himself, it was $1 for Jan. 1 and up incrementally until $365 on Dec. 31.
Sadler says the appeal of him and his T-Shirt fleet is that they offer a cheaper, easier alternative to hiring an in-house social-media consultant. Companies might pay $50,000 or more to hire a full-time person. Sadler says a company could hire IWearYourShirt for a tenth of the price and get half a month’s exposure in just a couple of days.
“That’s my pitch to people,” Sadler explains. “Stop paying a huge chunk of money to reinvent the wheel. We’ve got an engaged community ready to push out your message — we’ve got fans, followers and people viewing.”
The model is attractive to small businesses like Good Life Granola, a small granola maker in Michigan, and a guy who invented an iPod holder called the Pod Flex Pro, though Sadler also gets some larger clients like Pizza Hut and Nissan .
The starting salary for a professional T-shirt wearer is $35,000 but Sadler says there will be bonuses “for awesomeness.”
Plus, there are added perks like free jeans, underwear and socks.
Sadler and his second shirt, Evan White, had all three of those items sponsored this year: They got a supply of Lucky Jeans, underwear from Jockey and socks from Blacksocks.com. He’s hoping for more sponsorships next year.
Oh, and Sadler has promised to buy every new hire a new Macbook Pro laptop , a digital camera and a video camera.
If you think you’ve got what it takes to walk the walk and wear the shirt, you can apply at http://www.iwearyourshirt.com/hiring.
DeAndre Upshawwas named earlier this week as the first of the 2011 shirts — three more will be named between now and Dec. 15.
Check out Upshaw's winning application video:
Sadler says he’s looking for for people who are creative and hardworking — but also maintain a sense of humor.
“My mantra is: If you do a ton of things in a day, you can’t do them all well,” Sadler said. “So, do one thing: Figure out how to put a T-Shirt on the right way.”
And it looks like he's figured it out. Check out this video that Sadler, sorry, Francois, did for Wisconsin Cheese, which was viewed over 15,000 times on YouTube: