Hawk Tuah
'Hawk Tuah' girl, Hailey Welch, during her interview with Tim & Dee TV.

In the ever-evolving world of social media, viral moments can catapult ordinary individuals into overnight sensations, often with little more than a candid comment or spontaneous action. One such phenomenon is Hailey Welch, now famously known as the "Hawk Tuah Girl." Welch's rise to fame began with an off-the-cuff response during a street interview, and it has since turned into a lucrative venture, demonstrating how the power of social media can be harnessed for financial gain.

The Birth of Hawk Tuah Girl

Hailey Welch, a young, folksy blonde, became an internet sensation on June 11 when she participated in an interview with Tim & Dee TV. During the interview, Welch was asked various R-rated questions, culminating in a query about a "move in bed [that] makes a man go crazy every time." Welch's unabashed and humorous advice was to "give 'em that 'hawk tuah' and spit on that thang." This quirky phrase quickly resonated with audiences, spreading like wildfire across social media platforms.

The video clip featuring Welch's memorable advice was shared widely, gaining mentions from prominent figures like Joe Rogan, Howard Stern, and even professional athlete Bryce Harper. Despite the video's widespread circulation, Welch did not initially receive any financial benefits. Her viral fame, however, set the stage for potential monetisation opportunities.

Monetising the Hawk Tuah Phenomenon

Enter Jason Poteete, the owner of Fathead Threads, a family-owned embroidery and apparel business based in Marshall County, Tennessee. Poteete, who has known Welch for years, saw an opportunity to help her monetise her newfound fame. Recognising the potential for branded merchandise, Poteete contacted Welch to discuss creating and selling official Hawk Tuah-themed products.

Poteete's efforts led to the launch of the "Hawk Tuah '24" hats, available in multiple colours and sold for $32.78 each. Despite Welch's initial discomfort with the sudden influx of attention, Poteete encouraged her to embrace the opportunity. Welch has since taken steps to protect her brand, including consulting a lawyer about trademarking the phrase "Hawk Tuah."

Fathead Threads has experienced unprecedented demand for the Hawk Tuah hats, with over 2,000 units sold, generating at least $65,000 in revenue. This surge in sales is significant for the small, family-operated business, which typically handles much smaller orders. The collaboration between Welch and Poteete showcases how viral moments can be effectively leveraged into profitable business ventures.

How to Make Your Own Merch

Hawk Tuah Merch
Hawk Tuah Merch

Inspired by Hailey Welch's success? Creating your own merchandise is an exciting journey that combines creativity, business acumen, and marketing savvy. Whether you're an artist, a content creator, or a budding entrepreneur, crafting your merch allows you to showcase your unique style and connect with your audience. This guide will walk you through the essential steps to bring your merchandise dreams to life.

1. Find Inspiration

Your merch should reflect your brand identity and personal aesthetic. Start by brainstorming ideas that connect with your target audience. Think about products that align with your brand—t-shirts, hoodies, hats, stickers, or custom accessories. Sketch out your designs, play with colour palettes, and consider how your brand's logo or tagline can be incorporated into the merchandise.

2. Bring Ideas to Life

Choosing suitable materials and printing techniques is crucial. Quality is key in merch, representing your brand's commitment to excellence. Research different printing options like screen printing, embroidery, and direct-to-garment printing to determine what works best for your designs. Consider creating samples to ensure the final product meets your expectations.

Print-on-demand (POD) companies offer an easy and cost-effective way to produce your merchandise without managing inventory or incurring upfront costs. POD services allow for customisation and flexibility, with everything from printing to shipping handled by the supplier.

Recommended Print-on-Demand Services

  1. Printful: Offers a wide range of products, high-quality printing, and seamless integration with multiple e-commerce platforms.
  2. Teespring: Ideal for creators selling custom apparel and accessories without upfront costs.
  3. Printify: Provides extensive product options and competitive pricing, with integration capabilities for various online stores.

3. Scale Your Production

As you move from design to production, consider the logistics of sourcing materials, finding reliable manufacturers, and setting up an efficient supply chain. Establishing a solid relationship with a trustworthy supplier can make all the difference in maintaining consistent quality and timely delivery.

4. Focus on Marketing

Marketing your merch is crucial to its success. Leverage social media platforms, your website, and email newsletters to create buzz around your new products. Engage with your audience through behind-the-scenes content, product teasers, and limited-time offers to drive excitement and sales.

Remember, the story behind your merch can be just as compelling as the products themselves. Hailey Welch's story of becoming the Hawk Tuah Girl and monetising her viral moment through collaboration with Fathead Threads illustrates the potential of viral content to transform lives and create business opportunities.

The Future of Hailey Welch's Brand

Welch's journey from a spontaneous street interview to a merchandise mogul is a testament to the power of social media and the potential for viral moments to generate substantial business opportunities. By partnering with Fathead Threads, Welch turned a spontaneous moment into a profitable venture. If you're looking to monetise your creativity or audience, launching your own merchandise is an excellent avenue to explore.

Combining creativity with careful planning and strategic marketing, you can create a successful merch line that reflects your brand and could lead to success. So dive in, experiment, and, most importantly, have fun with the process!