Last updated on March 19th, 2020
In today’s highly competitive world, only smart marketing can help businesses to grow at a bigger level. Branded merchandise, therefore, has acquired a prominent place in marketing strategies. You can increase your audience reach easily with merch that has your company’s logo, and other brand-related visual identities on it. In this article, we’ve shared what branded merchandise is all about and why businesses should incorporate them into their marketing strategies.
Marketing professionals explore all minor or significant tactics that can drive customers’ attention. For them, the use of merchandise is a surefire way to lure people to a company’s business. People like to buy merchandise that has something attractive printed on it. It can be a company’s logo, a brand message, a motivational slogan, an illustration, etc.
A function of branded merchandise is to promote a company’s products or services. Therefore, the merchandise is also known as a promotional product. You might have seen companies distributing these products by the side of an event for free to create brand awareness.
For their unique qualify of driving customers to businesses, a majority of companies use merchandise as an effective means of brand promotion. According to a study, in the U.S, the sales of promotional products in 2018 increased to a whopping 24.7 billion dollars. This stat shows the faith that businesses have on branded merchandise for driving customers’ attention and generating sales.
This is the high time when you should be interested in using branded merchandise for the promotion of your small business. But first, know what it exactly is and how it will benefit your business.
If you are an artist or graphic designer, this article will serve you the purpose that you should keep in mind while creating them. There is no better strategy to utilize your skills in creating branded merchandise and sell your art to make money online.
Therefore, in this article, we’ve shared the following:
- What is branded merchandise?
- What are the types of branded merchandise?
- Why is branded merchandise important for your business?
What Is Branded Merchandise?
Any product that has a logo or any other identity of a company printed on it with a motive to promote a brand comes under the category of branded merchandise. So, marketers and entrepreneurs use high-quality products to promote their business.
Brand merchandising is about designing an authentic company logo as well as brand identity. Then, the company incorporates the logo and other visuals on merchandise that customers so often use.
The marketers strategically use products of daily use such as drinkware, T-shirts, hoodies, and all men’s and women’s apparel, accessories, drinkware, etc. to promote a business.
This type of merchandising involves giving away products as gifts or discounts at an event. For example, you can offer T-shirts to students at a college campus. Usually, such products are not part of a company’s main business. The main purpose of merchandising is to generate brand awareness.
However, you should pick the right platform that lets you choose your merchandise to print your business logo or any artwork on it. The platform should facilitate you in many ways while creating the merchandise promotional campaign.
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All businesses use branded merch to promote their products or services as an effective marketing strategy. So, for example, you may be a musician, DJ, or a music influencer or run a music-inspired merch brand for your fans. Then, you can create T-shirts, tank tops, hoodies, sweatshirts, and accessories to make extra money by selling the merchandise.
With these merchandises, you can extend your brand as an artist. You should use the commodity to spread a word about your art niche so that it helps in growing your fan base.
All you do is to open your online brand store with PrintShop, Designhill’s platform for artists, in a hassle-free way. Then start creating your artworks and order this platform to print it on the branded merchandise of your choice.
If you are not a graphic designer or illustrator, you can still get the logo or other artwork done by attracting a pool of specialist merchandise designers from across the world using the platform.
What Are the Types of Merchandise?
Before you start selling merchandise with your artwork printed on them, know that you can choose from a variety of products. Pay attention to the types of merchandise and pick them carefully after doing some market research. This is the way to know which type of products people like to buy more. So, here are the categories of merchandise you should consider:
i. Household Merchandise
People buy household and electronic merchandise after giving it a thought and researching the prices thoroughly. These are costly items for price-sensitive customers. These products include smartphones, furniture, electric equipment, etc.
ii. Convenience Merchandise
Such products that are essential for comfortable living are convenience merchandise. Customers can buy these items easily from anywhere. These products include hygiene and food items.
iii. Impulse Merchandise
Impulse merchandise is also known as luxury items. But customers buy these products as addons after finishing with the main shopping in a mall. For example, they can add some sweets to the basket or magazines and newspapers.
iv. Specialized Merchandise
Customers buy these niche products very less, but since these are expensive for average buyers. Such merchandise includes expensive cars and holiday tours.
What Are Winning Brand Merchandise Ideas?
While marketers use almost all merchandise for brand promotion, there are some products that are more preferred over others. Here are the products you should think of including more in your marketing plans.
Hoodies are amongst the most popular apparel that you can rely on for pleasing your customers. You can pick them in varied colors.
Everyone loves to wear T-shirts not only as a casual dress but also as office apparel. Pick branded high-quality T-shirts and put your logo on them to promote your business. You can earn as an artist as well by printing your artworks on T-shirts and selling them from your online store.
iii. Long Sleeves Shirts And Sweatshirts
These are also amongst the most sought-after apparel to keep warm during winter during exercise.
iv. Tote Bags
Tote bags are increasingly popular and useful on a daily basis and make a perfect opportunity to get your brand out amid the target audience.
v. Home & Living Products
Home and living products also make highly useful merchandise for promotion. You can add custom mugs, aprons, bean bags, beach bowls, and pillowcases in your list.
Accessories are also great branded merchandise that you can use for brand promotion. These include hats, socks, phone cases, bags, and many more.
Why Is Branded Merchandise Important For Your Business?
Branded merchandise is everywhere. Every product that has a company’s logo on it is a branded item. For this reason, this merchandise is also known as a promotional product or gift.
So, the logo of a company is visible to the user for a long time. This helps in generating brand awareness, which is the main purpose behind merchandise with a logo. But that is not the sole benefit.
Here Are Some Key Reasons Why Businesses So Frequently Use Branded Merchandise As A Marketing Tactic
01. Introduce Your Business
One of the major considerations behind the use of branded merchandise is its power to introduce a business in a big way. It functions like your business card, which you give to a client while meeting for the first time. These merchandise with your logo are the means of introducing your business to many people who are not familiar with what you do.
By distributing the products free to people, you let thousands of them know about your company for the first time. The merchandise is thus useful, especially for the small businesses which have started new in the market and looking for generating awareness of their business.
To make such gift items even more effective, print your company’s website and other contact details. Give precise information about your products or services.
02. Ensure Brand Recognition
A smart marketing tactic while using branded merchandise is to pick the items of daily use for distribution as a gift. The recipient of the gift will use or see the gift regularly for many months to come.
As long as the product is accessible and visible, the user will see your company’s logo and brand message. For example, you print your company’s logo on a T-shirt or flash drive or T-shirt and gift it to people. They will use such branded merchandise on a daily basis and see your brand logo and message.
This way, as people repeatedly see the logo, the merchandise helps in creating brand recognition for your small business.
03. Establish An Emotional Connect With The Audience
Branded merchandise marketing is also useful in engaging your target audience with your brand. When they continue to use a merchandise that has your logo on it, they kind of build an emotional connection with your company via the product.
They remember your gift fondly. This helps in turning the users into your customers. The user is most like to visit your business and buy your products at least once when required.
04. Build A Solid Base Of Loyal Customers
Marketers use branded merchandise or promo products strategically also to win customers’ loyalty. Various surveys have revealed that an overwhelming majority of customers who receive branded merchandise are most likely to purchase from such brands in the future. These surveys also point out that the consumers getting free gifts from retailers are expected to buy from the brand even more.
Such merchandise earns you new local customers as well. Another study says that one-third of the customers will start buying from the company that they have never heard of before if the company gives away merchandise as a gift.
Branded merchandise can drive your customer loyalty without a company using additional resources. As compared to the other marketing means, the merchandise can ensure loyalty in a short period.
But make sure that the product you offer as a gift or on discount is of high quality. That is why branded merchandise is always preferred for the campaign. Keep this in mind that customers will associate the premium quality of the products with the quality of your enterprise.
05. Engage The Audience With Your Gifts
One of the major advantages of branded merchandise is that it is tangible for the recipient of the product, whether bought or received as a gift. While digital advertising is popular but the merchandise advertising scores over it in terms of tangibility.
The person holding or seeing such a product involves all five senses, which is missing in most other forms of advertisements. Know that digital advertising can activate our only two senses. Moreover, after the app is closed, the digital ad also is no more seen.
So, when all of the senses of a person are actively experiencing a product, the act of engaging with your brand becomes even more memorable. We can say that the realness of the experience helps in winning the potential customers’ hearts. Once merchandise carrying your logo, slogan, or message is in the people’s hands, they use and experience it in their daily life.
06. Reduce Your Advertisement Costs
Small businesses are particularly concerned about their restricted budgets. They look for cost-effective means to generate more brand awareness. For them, branded merchandise comes as a boon.
All they need to do is to buy some merchandise and print their logos on the products. Then, give away these items to people as gifts for promotional purposes. This cost is much lower as compared to the budget spent on digital ads and billboard ads.
Moreover, useful merchandise such as a branded flash drive will stay with the customer. This means that besides the low cost, the merchandise gives you more value for money. The user will continue to possess the product for a long time.
07. Easily Incorporate Into Your Business Model
Businesses can easily make branded merchandise their integral part of marketing. You should build a stock of the items that you already give away. But have the products of daily use such as water bottles, T-shirts, hoodies, a variety of apparel for men, women, and kids, and all sorts of freebies that you normally hand out to customers.
If you offer the merchandise in one bag to a customer, then you can give the products in reusable bags. But if you give merchandise in multiple bags, offer the reusable bags to them as a bonus gift or sell at a throwaway price.
These bags earn you the benefits of customer loyalty and brand awareness. You can also brand your office supplies, such as pens, stationery, and staplers, etc.
08. Increase Direct Sales
It has been found that if companies employ branded merchandise, it helps them increase their sales manifold. The total sales and average sales per customer goes up considerably. If the company uses some clever marketing tactics, the merchandise will increase sales in many ways.
With merchandise marketing, companies encourage not only impulsive purchases but also upselling and cross-selling. Upselling involves purchasing of premium versions of products. Cross-selling refers to the selling of products that go well with the main products from different departments.
09. Ensure Better Business Exposure
With branded merchandise, your business gets more exposure in your niche market as compared to the other forms of marketing and advertisements.
For instance, a TV advertisement generally passes through the eyes just after it appears. People easily forget those ads. But the useful merchandise as gift items stays with people for a long time.
For instance, customers will use a gift of a T-shirt for months, and they will remember that your company gave it to them as a gift or for a discount. Such offers are amongst the best strategies to increase business exposure.
10. Make New Customers
In a recent study, it has been found that companies have to spend five times to attract new customers as compared to the money they fork out to keep an existing customer. So, the cost of acquiring a new customer is huge for a small business. But, here, branded merchandise can help.
Since merchandise with your logo and a motivational slogan makes a personalized product, it connects your business with the new customers at an emotional level. These personalized and tangible products are very effective in attracting new customers at a lower cost.
11. Have A Wide Range Of Product Choice
Another major advantage of branded merchandise as a marketing approach is that you have many product choices to make. When we talk of promotional products, generally mugs, USBs, pens, and other such items have been traditionally offered to people at conferences and exhibitions.
But the fact is that many other products of daily use are increasingly offered on discounts or as gifts for brand promotion. For instance, if you own an online store at PrintShop, you can access men’s and women’s apparel.
These clothing include T-shirts, hoodies, jackets and vests, bottoms, tote bags, and others. Think of some great tech products such as CD cases, pencils made of recycled material, etc. also.
Choosing the right products also is crucial to make an impression on people. With the right products, you can strike the emotional chord with them.
These are the major benefits of branded merchandise you have when including these items in your marketing plans. While your cost of this type of marketing is very low, still be selective in picking the right merchandise that is useful for people. Create your logo and other designs that look unique to make an added impression on the target audience.
How To Create A Strong Branded Merchandise For Your Business?
If you are not an artist or designer and struggling to create your logo or any other design, then Designhill can help. To create a logo for your upcoming small business, launch your design contest with this leading creative marketplace.
Then, get a winning logo design for your business. You can then place the order to print the logo plus your brand message on the merchandise of your choice for distribution or selling on a discount.
Branded merchandise is the one that carries a company’s logo or brand statement printed on it. So, apparel such as T-shirts and accessories that people use daily make excellent merchandise for brand promotion. Artists can sell merchandise such as shirts and other clothing from reputed brands by printing unique artworks on these products for sales. This marketing practice has many advantages for businesses and artists who want to earn money regularly.