Have you ever thought about how you could add value to your brand offline? Yes, OFFLINE! While we are quick to jump on board to promote our brands on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Google ads and more, we tend to neglect one of the best and most effective strategies by marketing your brand using custom merchandise.

What is Custom Merchandise?

Custom merchandise is apparel that you can customize to your liking, including your brand logo, quotes, slogan or anything else that represents you. It’s a great way to allow your customers to feel exclusive and can generate more attention to your brand than you realize.

Types of Custom Merchandise:

When it comes to custom merchandize, there are generally 4 main categories which are:

1. Convenience Merchandise:

A form of merchandise that is essential for a customer to own; they cannot live without it. Typical examples of this are food, hygiene and beauty products.

2. Impulse Merchandise:

These are luxury items that often are given as an add on to products. Common examples of impulse merchandise are newspapers, sweets and magazines.

3. Specialized merchandise:

Typically, these are niche products that people would not buy as much but tend to pay more for.

4. Household and electrical merchandise:

These are types of products that tend to require a lot of research and sell for a high value.

Typically custom merchandise can consist of hoodies, t-shirts, hats, masks, bags, socks, bottles, dog wear, mugs, towels, scarves, overalls, drinkware, phone cases, accessories and more.

The list is truly endless for custom merchandise; it’s epic!

7 Ways Branded Merchandise Can Help You Brand:

Now you have an insight into what custom merchandise is, let’s look at how it can benefit your brand. Custom merchandise can help do the following:

1. Fantastic Brand Awareness:

Ok, this one is at the top of the list and is pretty much a no brainer. If you have a customer wearing branded merchandising or you’ve given some in a giveaway, it can be a free marketing tool. If the branded merchandise is a piece of clothing, many people will see your brand as the person wearing it walks around.

Impact of custom merchandise on your branding

Fig: Impact of custom merchandise on your branding

In a way, it’s like they’re a human billboard and allowing your brand to be seen by many people at a time. That’sThat’s not forgetting selfies or photos either if people take photos in your branded merchandise!

Plus, if someone sees your cool brand logo and is interested, it’s a great starting point for them to google and learn more about you! Moreover, in a giveaway, most people will tend to hold onto the merchandise for a long time, having a constant reminder of your brand on a daily basis.

2. It’s Cost-effective

In comparison to other marketing methods, it can be a cheaper way of getting your brand out there. Depending on the merchandise you buy, you can often get discounts if you buy it in bulk. Similarly, custom merchandise gets people to spread your brand message by word of mouth, which can be more memorable than an impression online.

3. Increases Customer Loyalty for Your Brands:

In business, sometimes you want to grow your audience, but at times, it’s just as important to retain your customers. A great way of maintaining customer loyalty and allowing customers to feel valued is by sending them a few merchandized freebies.

After all, who does not love receiving free stuff? Plus, if they receive something for free, they don’t expect it may help elevate a sense of pleasure and are more likely to buy from you again in the future.

4. An Additional Source of Revenue:

In business, having different revenue streams is always a good idea. Having a branded merchandise section on your site for your customers is a great way to generate extra income. Who knows, you could even use the revenue to invest in other marketing streams.

5. It Makes You Look Like a Leader Amongst Your Competitors:

Business is a world where everyone wants to be at the top of the hierarchy; it’s very rare nowadays that companies are a monopoly. Thanks to custom merchandise, you can strategically place your brand ahead of them. This is because you can differentiate your products and offer your customers more.

6. Increases Morale in the Workplace:

Branding is more than just getting new customers; having a brand is also viewed at how they treat their employees. Custom merchandise can help contribute to happy employees and boost their morale. Perhaps give them free t-shirts, water bottles, mugs and more to make them feel cared about.

If your employees are happy, it’s more than likely they will talk about your business outside the office, making other people recognize your work as great and allowing others to want to work for you.

7. It Can Create More Leads:

Even though custom merchandise can play a big part in raising brand awareness, it can also help build leads. While there is a range of ways to create leads, one way that’s not thought about as much is custom merchandise.

For example, you can use custom merchandise in client meetings to add to the image of your business and incorporate more sales. Similarly, if you have companies or that give you their contact number or email, you could give them custom merchandise in return. This is likely to help you bring in potential leads for your brand.

How to Select the Right Custom Merchandize?

While there are many ways to have custom merchandise, not all are the best. If you’re thinking about custom merchandise, you should do the following:

1. Consider Your Message:

The main purpose of your business having custom merchandise is to raise your brand awareness. Therefore it’s essential you ensure you have the right message that can catch people’s attention and stay in their mind for some time after they’ve seen it. Similarly, you don’t want to put anything offensive on them either.

2. Pick the Right Product:

You don’t want to select any random type of custom merchandise to promote your brand. After all, the merchandise you pick has to align with your brand’s personality. For example, if you have a mug business and choose a pen drive, that’s not the right way to market your brand. To have an idea of what options may fit your brand’s personality, you can check out the large inventory Coastal Reign has.

3. Quality is Everything:

In the custom merchandise market, many businesses are quick to select a product and churn them out to customers, employees and suppliers like no tomorrow. Often, they tend to forget one of the most important factors, the quality! Having good quality custom merchandise can help preserve your brands marketing for a long time. Similarly, good quality merchandise will contribute to good impressions of your brand. The last thing you want is to be seen as cheap!

4. Get Creative:

When you decide on what custom merchandise you want for your brand, you should take time to make a design. Depending on what merchandise you choose, you often have a lot of space and creative freedom to use! Use this time to consult with graphic designers and get creative people on board to make your merchandise the best out there.

Plus, it can often save you time if you have a professional designing your merchandise for you, allowing you to benefit from the results you want. If you’re looking for design help, you can hire a designer on websites like Fiverr or Upwork.

Final Thoughts:

Custom merchandise is a form of marketing that can raise the attention of your business offline. It allows humans to advertise your products for free, generate additional income streams and leads.

Similarly, it can increase your brand loyalty, employee morale and set you apart from your competitors. Always choose high quality custom merchandise and take your time to get creative; if you do this, your brand is bound to leave a lasting impression in many people’s minds.

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