Merch sales are an important source of income for many creators. However, when you promote your merch often, you content may begin to feel too much like one big ad campaign. With the right strategies, you can continue to promote your merch without making your viewers feel like they’re watching an ad instead of a YouTube video.
Here’s how to promote your merch without making it feel like a commercial.
Wear your own merch in videos casually.
Add your own designs to the lineup of clothes you typically wear on camera. Style them into different outfits. You might even find ways to alter them, such as cropping a hoodie or an oversized shirt. However you wear them, be casual about it. Hold off on mentioning your merch until the call-to-action, or leave the links in an information card.
You can subtly promote your merch by sporting it on social media as well. Create an aesthetic #OOTD for your Instagram grid, or dress it down in your story. You could also wear a t-shirt you designed while trying out the latest TikTok trend.
Gift samples to creator friends.
There’s a reason brands give products like designer clothes to influencers for free. Whenever someone with a following is seen wearing a brand’s design, it brings attention to that company. That attention drives sales. It’s similar to sponsored content, except there’s no expectation of payment from the company or a post from the influencer.
You can promote your merch in a similar way by sending free merch samples to your friends who are fellow creators. If they post about your gift, then you should always openly thank them. If the platform allows, share their posts as well. In the future, if they gift you merch samples, then be sure to return the favor.
Encourage fans to tag you in pictures of themselves with your merch so you can share them.
You shouldn’t limit yourself to only sharing pictures of your merch posted by influencers. In your videos and on social media, encourage the fans who are buying your merch to share their own pictures with you. Ask them to either tag you or use a certain hashtag so that the posts will be easy for you to find.
Engage with their posts by liking and commenting to say thank you. Retweet them or share their posts on your story. You might even choose a few subscribers’ pictures to share in your weekly video or on your Instagram feed.
Offer periodic promo codes and sales.
To drive more sales during a slow period, offer your followers a discount. You can have a sale, which only lasts for a certain amount of time or only applies to certain items. Alternatively, you could offer a promo code that’s good for a certain percentage off any order.
To generate more interest, make the discount more exclusive. For example, you might offer a promo code that only works for the first one hundred orders, or you might limit the sale to twenty-four hours. Alternatively, you might only send the discount code to your email newsletter subscribers or your Channel Members.
To promote your merch, show your audience how both you and other creators wear it in real life. You can also generate more sales by sharing posts from fans who have already purchased and offering discounts.
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Kristen Harris enjoys listening to a wide range of music, from Taylor Swift to, on occasion, Celtic instrumental. She also spends her time writing, reading, and baking.