Marketing doesn’t mean you have to put them everywhere (although that helps), it means you have to make them more enticing so your supporters would actually reach down their pockets and buy your items.
Here are some tried and tested ways to increase merch sales:
Give them any type of coupon that’s attractive yet still related to your branding. Maybe a free beer during your gig, free backstage passes, free discount on your concert tickets? Anything you’re willing to give that’s not so expensive yet not so cheap. Just don’t give them something that’s not related like free soap or something. Make your own coupon using this website.
CD/Vinyl/USB at a cheaper price
Bundle your CD with your merch at a much cheaper price than their individual prices combined. If they want the music more than the merch, they’d still buy it. Vice versa. It’s the added push they need to buy your products. It helps a lot if you have a unified theme- the design of the CD/Vinyl/USB is the same or incorporated to the shirt design.
Due to the popularity of digital downloads, download cards have become one of the most popular ways to sell music. In fact, it is a must for musicians nowadays. If you are a band and you are thinking of making download cards, here are some ways you can use download cards to promote your band.
You may give them one download card when they buy your tee. Make sure it’s a special song that’s not released before to ensure they don’t have the song in their playlist already.
Free passes/ tickets
If you have free concert tickets to spare, why not give some away as a sort of raffle when they buy your merch items? If it’s too much, you can just sell tickets at discounted rates.
Any cheap but cool merch item
If tickets are a bit too much, you can just give away cheaper merch items. Choose something like custom guitar picks, necklace, or buttons and pins. These items cost only $1 or less so it won’t greatly affect your profit but they will draw people in to buy your merch items.
People love the element of surprise. Just give random present of any of the above and make sure you let them post these on social media to claim their gift items.
Try these tips to rapidly improve your t-shirt and merch sales. Tell us which works best! And if you have a tip to add to this list, please do put your advice in the comments section.
James Hill is a veteran of the music industry. He first worked at Warner Reprise Records then later joined Interscope/ Geffen Records where he managed producers and songwriters and got his first platinum record for Keyshia Cole’s The Way It Is. He is now helping indie artists with branding and manufacturing through his company Unified Manufacturing, a CD/DVD/vinyl and merch company in LA.