Digital marketing strategies are so vital to the success or failure of a product. Creating an attractive custom merchandise line does not guarantee immediate sales. Given how many merchandise sellers there are, the competition can get pretty despite narrowing down your targeted demographic and operating in a specific niche.
At the end of the day, the number of sales depends on a brand’s promotional efforts. An effective marketing campaign will result in both new customers and old customer retention. Let’s take a look at what your steps should be after you start a clothing line online and want to get customers.
Work on Email Marketing
Email marketing is tricky, but it continues to be one of the most effective marketing techniques. The first challenge is to persuade people to opt-in for an email list and receive promotional offers.
A weekly newsletter is one of the go-to methods to grow an email subscriber list. However, custom merchandise stores might not have enough content ideas to release a newsletter on a regular basis.
Instead, they should take a different approach. Offering prizes and opt-in bonuses, such as free shipping or a discount, could work.
As soon as an email list starts growing, start sending offers. It is important to note that an email frequency should make sense because too many offers will be considered spam and lead to users opting out of the email list.
Personalization should also play a prominent role in email marketing. And it should not be just about adding a recipient’s name in the email since it is hardly considered personalization anymore. An email marketing campaign should also include links to relevant content and offers, as well as be sent at an appropriate time.
Finally, it is important to emphasize mobile users. Many people check emails on their smartphones, meaning that a promotional email should ideally have a short subject line, a readable font size, and other mobile optimization elements.
Collaborate With Influencers
Influencer marketing works because people are more likely to trust a personality they follow on social media. In fact, according to MuseFind, more than 90 percent of consumers believe in influencers rather than traditional advertisements or celebrity endorsements.
Fortunately for merchandise stores, they should have more than enough products to send out for promotional needs. And the more collaborations there will be, the higher the odds of attracting new customers.
Even if an influencer has only a couple of thousand followers, it is still worth striking a partnership with them because every little bit helps, especially when it comes to promotion in a competitive market.
Of course, some influencers might want more than just a piece of merchandise to create a promotional post on their social media. If so, listen to their demands and consider whether an investment would be worth it for the business.
Create a Retargeting Campaign
A retargeting campaign focuses on people who had visited an online store before but did not spend money. BusinessInsider reports that about 97 percent of people who visit a website the first time leave it without buying anything.
Unless a business can bring these people back, the potential customers will be lost forever. But if a person visited a site before, it means something caught their interest, right?
Retargeting can be achieved using Google Ads, LinkedIn Ads, Instagram Ads, and Facebook retargeting.
Internet browsers store information about people’s browsing habits in the form of cookies. Marketers utilize cookies to create relevant ads and raise brand awareness. And when you target people who showed interest before, the odds of converting them are higher than targeting someone random.
One might also encounter the term “remarketing,” which sounds like retargeting. While the two terms are similar, retargeting is more about paid ads, whereas a remarketing campaign will primarily use emails to target potentially interested individuals or organizations.
Sponsor Local Sports Teams and Events
There are bound to be some opportunities to advertise custom merchandise locally. For example, if there is an upcoming event, such as a marathon, a brand could raise its awareness and attract new customers by giving away t-shirts to participants. Wearing t-shirts and participating themselves is also an option.
Sponsoring local sports teams could also be one of the options. Both professional and amateur clubs should appreciate sponsorship for t-shirts, bags, socks, and other merchandise. And if it provides a business with free publicity, why not take such an opportunity?
Donate Merchandise to Charities
Charities are another opportunity to give your merchandise for free and gain exposure in return. Charity volunteers wear matching t-shirts to stand out from the crowd, and your brand could be one of the t-shirt providers.
If there are some leftovers of old merchandise that did not sell, you could also donate them to charities that need clothes.
Organize Contests on Social Media
Social media contests are one of the best methods to attract new customers. People like to participate in giveaways if there is no entry fee. In social media, you usually have to like and share a giveaway post to participate, meaning that it takes only a few seconds to enter.
Giveaways on social media tend to go viral because as more people join and share the post, the more social media users the post reaches, and these users join in as well, creating a snowball effect.
Giving away a few pieces of merchandise should not be a problem for merch stores that have an abundance of products. In fact, it might be worth their while to create a regular giveaway. For example, giving away one piece of merchandise every Monday. Such a contest would be an addition to your marketing calendar.
The idea is not just about making more sales. Organizing contests on social media also raises brand awareness and attracts new followers.
Throw in Some Freebies
Throwing in some freebies now and then might seem like a waste, but this tactic could work to a brand’s advantage. Small knick-knacks, such as pens, notebooks, and stickers, are not that expensive to make, but they can also be a part of your custom merchandise line.
You can use this cheaper merchandise as part of the package and surprise the customers. After getting free stickers, a person might put them on their laptop and work as an advertisement tool for your brand. A similar thing can be said about pens. If someone notices a person using a custom-made pen, they might inquire about where to get one.
Offer Variety and Quality
The last bit of advice is about offering various merchandise. If a brand starts as a t-shirt store, it should consider scaling itself and adding new products. After all, relying on old designs will not cut it, especially when it comes to retaining loyal customers.
Product quality should be emphasized as well. If someone purchases merchandise and is disappointed with the quality, they might leave negative feedback on the website and discourage future customers.
Meanwhile, if the overall sentiment about the merchandise is positive, it will encourage people to recommend the store to their friends and family.
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