How A Creator Found Community and Built a Brand With Spreadshop

content creator

Hey, adventurers!

I want to share my journey of becoming a content creator with you and talk about the power of community. This story starts with my goal of getting a Silver Play Button on YouTube and ultimately ends with a new dream of building a fully sustainable homestead. But before we dive into the details, allow me to introduce myself.

My name is Tom Phan, a first generation, Vietnamese-American who lives in the suburbs of Minnesota. I’m a content creator on a mission to inspire others to embrace self-reliance and connect with nature. And my journey with Spreadshop? It’s been nothing short of extraordinary.

Starting in 2017 and for three long years, I poured my heart and soul into creating content on YouTube – for FREE with no monetization or paid opportunities. I was just hoping to make a dent in the digital landscape. But despite my best efforts, success remained far from reach. It wasn’t until TikTok entered the scene that I found my breakthrough opportunity.

Within just one year of using the platform, I discovered a newfound audience hungry for my unique blend of bushcraft wisdom and survival know-how with a twist of Asian-American influence. I grew my TikTok from 5,000 followers to over 200K followers in just a few months. I now have a whopping 3.7 million followers on TikTok and was finally able to achieve my goal of 100K subscribers in November of 2022, thus receiving the Silver Play Button from YouTube.

I was able to achieve the success I did on TikTok and YouTube thanks to the community I built with my merch. Without those platforms, I wouldn’t be here doing what I love today. 

And that’s where Spreadshop comes into play. Recognizing the potential of my brand and the passion behind my content, they took me under their wing as their first brand ambassador. For over four years now, we’ve been on this journey together! A journey fueled by creativity, collaboration, and a shared vision of a more sustainable future.

When they were running their video podcast – Quit Your Day Job – the Spreadshop team interviewed Daniel Batal as part of their first episode. That video was so incredibly inspiring that I went and purchased their Quit Your Day Job sweatshirt. That was what really started my movement to quit my full time job and become a full-time content creator.

Next up, I found myself being interviewed on the podcast by the Spreadshop team. I had an excellent time chatting with them on the podcast. The knowledge I dropped back then is still very relevant today for any new and upcoming content creators. Check out the video above for inspiration.

I finally quit my full time corporate job and became a full time content creator at the start of 2021 and it’s been a wild ride!

At the heart of my brand are two designs that have captured the imagination of my audience. The main Clueless Bushcraft Logo featuring the shed that’s featured in practically all my videos. And the iconic bear image with the words, “Survival is simple, Just don’t die.” These designs aren’t just symbols; they’re reflections of my journey and my aspirations. 

Much of my personal success in these social spaces have been due to a book called, “The 10X Rule” by Grant Cardone. It has been used like my bible for content creation and life in general. The goal: Set 10X goals and operate at 10X levels to reach the goals you want to achieve. If you don’t reach the 10X goal you set, at least you put in that work and usually you’ll land somewhere acceptable and that’s what happened to me with my content creator journey. If you need an excellent guideline on how to become successful, that’s the book to pick up.

You see, my ultimate goal isn’t/wasn’t to sell merchandise, it was to build a community. A community rooted in self-reliance, sustainability, and harmony with nature. Spreadshop merch allows me to easily do this with their platform and print-on-demand service.

creator merch designs

That’s why I’m so passionate about creating content that not only entertains but educates and inspires others to embrace a more intentional way of living. And what better way to build a community than to create an amazing message and plaster it on merchandise that sends your message across the world? Your designs on merch become a walking advertisement for your mission and purpose.

Wouldn’t it be amazing to simply be grocery shopping and suddenly see someone from your community wearing your merch? I’ve had this happen several times. Once, I went fishing and saw a guy wearing the Clueless Bushcraft logo baseball tee and I had to stop and talk to him. We had an excellent time chatting and it was the first time I felt that what I was doing made a difference. I’ve seen other content creators wear my “Survival is simple, just dont die” T-Shirt on live streams as well. It’s amazing knowing that you have people who care enough about your passions to purchase merch from you.

But my journey doesn’t end there. No, it’s just the beginning. My sights are set on a future where I can buy land, build a home, and establish a fully sustainable homestead. Just imagine, solar power, water collection, livestock roaming freely, crops flourishing—all working together just like clockwork to create a self-sustaining ecosystem.

And Spreadshop? They’re more than just a platform for selling merch. They’re partners in my mission, empowering me to turn my dreams into reality and connect with a global community of like-minded individuals who share my vision for a better, more sustainable world.

So, to all you aspiring content creators and nature enthusiasts out there, I have one message: never give up on your dreams. Embrace the journey, embrace the challenges, and most importantly, embrace the power of community. Together, we can create a world where self-reliance isn’t just a goal, it’s a way of life.

Ready to join the adventure? Start creating your own merchandise today with Spreadshop, and let’s build a brighter, more sustainable future together.

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2 months ago

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