Marvin Espina was a Filipino overseas foreign worker in Afghanistan on his fourth year when he decided to return to the Philippines to be with family and explore other endeavors. In 2014, Marvin and wife Khate discovered business solution platform Teespring, which enabled them to kickstart their own custom t-shirt venture via e-commerce.
Marvin and Khate began with selling shirts catering to military and veterans, leveraging Marvin’s background and knowledge of their culture from his time in American bases in Afghanistan. Crucial to Marvin and Khate’s success was investing in Facebook Ads to drive traffic to their different products on the Teespring page.
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“We used Facebook ads from the start. Khate and I agreed that we would set aside around $200 per month for that. At first, we would spend close to $150 with no return at all. It wasn’t until our 9th and 10th campaign that we were able to start generating sales,” said Marvin.
Espina recommends laying out objectives for each piece of content to be created with the audience clearly in mind. Since there is no fixed formula to capturing an audience, Espina admits to a trial and error approach utilizing Page Post Engagement Ads for testing then running Website Conversion Ads as soon he finds the demographic that convert or engage.
“Facebook gives us the perfect platform to to test and scale a design idea. Khate and I discovered that reaching our desired audience is challenging if we rely only on organic traffic and searches on the platform,” said Marvin.
With the help of Facebook pixel, a tool to help note conversions and get insights, Espina was able to determine that close to 99% of their sales comes from Facebook Ads and customers from the US, Canada and the UK. To date, they have sold more than 17,000 shirts and generated close to $220,000 in profit.
Marvin and Khate now live full time in the Philippines and spend most of their time traveling around the country with their two kids, all thanks to their new found passion for e-commerce.
Marvin and Khate will be among the success stories and speakers at the Easy E-Commerce for Everyone event this March 24 at SM Seaside Cebu City. At the event, Marvin and Khate will talk about their entrepreneurial journey and share strategies and tips on how to start a simple e-commerce business.
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Organized by Facebook and online business solution platforms Payoneer and Teespring, Easy E-Commerce For Everyone is designed to help Filipinos start their e-commerce business. Insightful discussions from Facebook, Payoneer and Teespring will enable aspiring entrepreneurs to understand how to use Facebook as a real marketing tool in setting up or enhancing businesses and keeping the conversation going with customers. Those who are interested in attending can register at https://ecommerceforeveryone.splashthat.com/.