Bottom Line Up Front: For this Texas-based print shop, shying away from the problem was never an option — they used quick thinking, creativity, and determination to help local businesses, local organizations, and local kids and teens feel supported. We break down how they did it below.
For millions of students across the country, the past few months have been a major adjustment.
Schools are closed. Extra-curricular activities are paused. And any sort of socializing, from playdates to parties, are just barely returning.
Kids and teens have had to adapt, quickly, to all of the daily changes — and that’s no small feat. Which is why today’s Spotlight feature focuses on a print shop that’s doing all it can to ease the transition.
While there are fundraisers going on all over the country for businesses that have had to close and medical heroes that need supplies, not as much attention has been given to our nation’s children. As they struggle to make sense of the pandemic and their new daily life, it’s initiatives like the one we highlight today that make their course a little more manageable — and a little more fun.
So, join us in giving a show of gratitude to this screen printer that’s making a difference for an entire Texas school district — today’s Spotlight is on: the Success Print Shop and the San Angelo Independent School District!
A preceding reputation
The Success Print Shop never took community satisfaction lightly.
Before the pandemic hit, they were a team of hard-working, creative, and customer-oriented experts. Based in San Angelo, Texas, the print shop might’ve been located in a small town, but that never stopped its big ambition.
If there was one thing Jonathan Ornelas, Success Print Shop’s owner, wanted to achieve, it was this: helping out as many people as he could, and making sure they were all overjoyed with the results.
Customer service always came first. For Ornelas, that famously meant solving problems people didn’t even know they had.
When the editor-in-chief at Entrepreneur Magazine got tired of holding a sign with his name and title on the magazine’s Instagram Live sessions, Ornelas didn’t hesitate — he reached out, offering to make t-shirts with the information written across them.
Those t-shirts earned Success Print Shop a run of fame on social media, and also cemented the team as people who care.
But, when COVID-19 entered our lives and began to disrupt our normal business operations, Ornelas saw his print shop’s orders start to dwindle. And, when he looked around the small town he loved to be a part of, he saw other business owners — and other community members — just as affected.
So, just as he’d done for as long as his business had been running, he got to work, doing whatever he could to make those around him proud of the result.
First, it was for the businesses
The first campaign Success Print Shop took on was, like many of the fundraisers we’ve seen, aimed at helping out local businesses.
Businesses that couldn’t proceed as they normally would, given the new essential-business-only orders.
Businesses that were hustling to figure out how they could possibly sustain themselves, without being able to offer the operations they’d been offering their entire tenure.
Ornelas jumped to the task, leveraging his team’s capabilities to raise some much-needed funds. He worked with the businesses, using InkSoft’s Designer feature to produce a custom t-shirt each business loved, and using the Stores feature to showcase them online.
Once the store was up, residents of San Angelo — and beyond — were able to show up for their favorite local businesses.
From coworking space San Angelo studios to antique store Madstyle Vintage, the online store made it possible for hurting businesses to diversify their streams of revenue — and make money in a time they otherwise wouldn’t have been able to.
But as his team was helping local businesses, Ornelas couldn’t help but notice the effects that the pandemic was having on school-aged children and teenagers.
Orders from schools for graduations and sporting events were few and far between, so he decided to do something about it.
Then, it was for the schools
Graduations are important. They’re a time to celebrate all of the hard work, determination, and resilience that it takes to finish high school, and they mark the start of a new chapter.
But Ornelas knew that mass gatherings were off the table, and that students weren’t even permitted to congregate for class. So he came up with a new way to celebrate the milestone — not by pretending everything was normal, but by commemorating the moment by what makes it unique.
The t-shirts read: “Class of 2020, In The Cloud.”
By playing on the use of technology students rely on to finish their high-school classes, the t-shirts encourage them to remember the uniqueness of their last months as seniors — and even find a sense of pride in them.
For the hundreds of San Angelo high school seniors who were forced to separate from their friends, forced to finish their classes online, and forced to celebrate cornerstone events like prom and graduation at home, these t-shirts are much more than t-shirts.
They’re a way to feel united amid the crazy times — and a way to feel connected, proud, and celebrated, all at once.
Finally, it was for the kids
As the weeks spent isolated turned into months, and the turmoil the pandemic incited reached new heights, Ornelas and his team were still looking for new ways to help.
That’s when the Success Print Shop turned to the San Angelo Independent School District to offer what they could.
The Stronger Together campaign was born.
Ornelas and his team designed the custom t-shirts, leaving a space for even more customization: the purchaser would be able to input their school name, right above the central message.
“Stronger Together, San Angelo ISD.”
Simple, yet highly inspiring, the t-shirts make one thing come across clearly: the community is behind its students, and it’s behind their families.
When we stand together, we can’t fail.
Using InkSoft technology to create a new campaign-specific online store, Ornelas put those t-shirts on display, inviting his entire community — in San Angelo and beyond — to show up. (Virtually, of course.)
Each t-shirt sale would go to supporting the Boys and Girls Club of San Angelo, helping the organization fund the programming that’s so integral to the lives of so many kids and teens.
“Never underestimate the strength of a small town!” The online store reads, reminding each of its visitors that they have the power to make a difference.
It’s not about donating millions, and it’s not about rescuing every business. It’s about doing what you can — just like Ornelas and his team at Success Print Shop did — to leave a positive impact.
The wrap up
The Success Print Shop could’ve stopped after their first initiative, to help support local businesses. They could’ve stopped after their second initiative, to help graduating students still feel special. But instead, they kept working.
They kept brainstorming ways to improve the lives of those around them.
They kept innovating new applications of their in-house capabilities and digital InkSoft software.
And they kept showing effort, diligence, and kindness when it came to affecting the lives of those around them.
Just like Ornelas’s aim before any of this mayhem started, he strived to help as many people as he could, and make them proud of the result. And, as onlookers who are moved at everything his team has accomplished, we can say that he’s verifiably met his goal.
If your business is looking to make an impact during these strange times, remember: our technology is here for you.
You can use our Designer feature to enable businesses and individuals to create their own designs from wherever they are, and you can use our Stores feature to set those designed products up in their own custom online showroom.
If you have any questions about how to best leverage your InkSoft tools to start the campaign of your dreams, don’t hesitate to reach out. We know you have the power to create something great, and we’d love to help you do that.
Thanks for joining us for today’s Spotlight feature — and we’ll see you next time! Until then, we’re rooting for you.
The InkSoft Team