Every band has a different style, method, and genre but every band has merchandise for its audience. At the end of the day, a band is also a business and if you are in a band you must treat your band like a business. Bands and musicians also need to reach larger audiences, like businesses, if they really want to promote their music, and make money.
The best way, to reach more people, is by making custom merch to catch their attention. Custom band merch provides you with the opportunity to take your band’s visibility to the next level. However, not all products sell the same.
In order to sell your band promotional items you need unique ideas, and we have got you covered with the best ones, so you do not have to do the homework. Read our 11 merch ideas to improve your music and band image drastically:
The most tried and true cool merchandise for a business, brand or influencer – custom band shirts and band hoodies. There’s no better way to promote your band’s image, excite someone who is a big merch fan, and raise money all at the same time than with a perfectly-designed custom band merch.
Well-thought artist merchandise can do wonders for your brand. Concert t-shirts are the fans way of saying that they were there. Good music merch allows your fans to take back a piece of your band home with them. Even though it is a common idea, only a few know how to come up with appropriate concert t-shirt ideas.
One good way to start is by brainstorming a few different band t shirts ideas that represent your band’s spirit. Come up with unique band merchandise ideas but do not forget to include your band’s name or logo on it. Here are a few things that you can print on your merch:
- Tour dates on the back of a shirt or hoodie.
- Album artwork is always a crowd favourite
- The lyrics from your most popular song.
- A tee featuring images that capture the vibe of your music
And last, but certainly not least, make sure that your merch, whether it is shirts or hoodies, is comfortable, fashion-fitted, soft, and light by opting for a cotton/poly blend.
Posters are another great way to advertise your band. You can not only raise extra funds with them but also urge people to buy your merch by giving out some posters for free. Their value as a form of a promotional tool is greater than their monetary value, so giving them away for free can be a smart move on your part.
Moreover, posters are one of those band promotional items that let you explore creative ways to sell your art especially if your band has visual artists. You can ask your fans to send in their versions of designs for posters as a part of a poster design contest.
So, if you want to target the most effective DIY band merch ideas then posters are it for you. Almost everyone is surrounded by posters of their favourite musicians growing up. Plus, you can divide them into 4 categories:
- Gig: These are designed for a specific show, and are generally hand-screen printed which makes them highly collectible.
- Tour: These usually feature a promotional photo or the album cover with the upcoming tour dates.
- Album: This usually has the upcoming album, and is usually designed by the record label for record stores.
- Generic: These just have the photo of the band or any of their graphics.
CDs and Vinyl Records
CDs and vinyl records make up a large portion of promotional and merch strategies. This form of merch makes your music transportable and representable and let your fans connect with your music in a way that guarantees a continued engagement.
Vinyl records, in particular, have seen a surge in their popularity in the last decade which makes them an amazing tool for musicians who want to promote their music directly to their followers. Keep in mind that custom printed vinyl records are expensive but if your fanbase has an interest in them, they can seriously pay off.
Totes bags are not only affordable promotional accessories, but they are very reliable in terms of generating sales because your fans need something to carry all their band swag.
They are easy to design, and you can just print your favourite shirt or poster design on a tote bag. Besides, with plastic bags getting banned, a reusable stylish tote bag is the right thing to advertise.
Use your imagination when designing tote bags. If you like to produce rock and roll music, go for an edgy black design. If you are more of a pop band, then experiment with bright colours. And before you even know it, your fans will be rocking your band’s logo in grocery stores and markets.
Socks are a great business. Yes. You read that right. Socks! The global market for socks was valued at about $11.7 billion in 2018. So, novelty socks can be a great addition to your merch store.
You can make socks with your lyrics on them, your band’s logo or even rainbow coloured socks with your visuals on them. Plus, if your fans are also big sneaker heads, then you need to introduce cool socks in your merchandise.
Caps and Beanies
Headwear is one of the most overlooked merch ideas of all time. Headwear is not as easy to print as other garments, but it is worth it because even though not everyone wears them, but those who do they wear them all the time.
Some of the most famous designs at the moment include the famous dad hats that are floppy with an adjustable buckle strap, and the anvil caps that can be done in a bunch of colours.
The most famous way of designing hats is embroidery. People love embroidered headwear. And you do not even need a lot of them. Just stock a few hats on your band’s website for the headwear connoisseurs out there. And do not forget to stock custom printed beanies for the colder months of the year.
Who doesn’t adore stickers? Music fans love stickers especially those that are free. Of all the promotional merch items on our list, these are the ones you should definitely distribute for free. You can buy them in bulk to reduce the price per piece even more.
Slip them in your fan’s bag or order after they buy another piece of your merch, or you can attract them to your merch table with the stickers. Just make sure that your fans can spot a clear sign on your table that says “FREE Stickers”.
Let your stickers do the brand marketing for you when they end up on a guitar case, a laptop, a record case, a car bumper, a mobile phone or even the bathroom stall at a local bar.
Coffee mugs are another pretty great tool for increasing your brand’s awareness. They can give your fans a fun way to kick-start their day with your music in their mind. Coffee mugs might not be a good idea for you if your audience is younger, but if your fans are adults then coffee mugs are going to sell good and fast.
Patches are a big upgrade from stickers. People love putting patches on their clothes especially jean jackets and denim. You can design them in all shapes and sizes and customise them however you want. Create a custom shape for your band’s logo or have your lyrics integrated into iron-on patches.
Patches have quite a lot of history in the world of music. They are usually linked to punk music and bands. However, with the popularity of jean jackets, patches have become a hot item to customise jackets.
Start by setting the trend yourself by asking your band members to pose in a jacket with your brand’s patches on them. You never know who will follow your trend. For all you know, you may spot Chris Hemsworth rocking a jacket with your band’s merch on it.
Custom keychains offer the widest array of options. You can make them in any shape you want and experiment with rubber, metal, plastic, bevelled edges, raised prints, and so much more, depending on your budget.
Keychains are an everyday object which increases their marketability. Plus, they are inexpensive to produce and sell for a larger profit even when you keep them affordable for your followers.
We suggest going for metal or something long-lasting. Stay clear of sharp edges as they don’t feel good in the pocket. Design a simple shape with round edges and keep the size very minimal.
Notebooks make an excellent merchandise item for several different reasons. If your audience is on the younger side and still goes to school, then you can estimate how much notebooks are going to sell. Notebooks can easily expose your band to more people that perfectly fit your target demographic.
On the other hand, if your audience is on the older side, then they will need something to take their notes during work meetings. So, notebooks cover a lot of different age spectrums. Not to forget people who like to journal, they too will buy your notebooks.
Providing the best merch to your fans and finding the right tools and printing services to bring your merch ideas to life is the best recipe for increasing brand awareness. You can reach wider audiences if you market your custom band merch the right way. So take some inspiration from our list of the best merch ideas and get working.