Starting out in a band is always going to be an uphill battle from the get go. You will be competing with other bands out there and you will do so in the knowledge that the odds are stacked against you. Of course, achieving commercial success is only one part of why people choose to join bands. Exercising your passion and talent for music is the most important aspect of the endeavor and so long as you enjoy what you do then you can’t go far wrong.
One of the most effective ways of making your band stand out amongst the others is through merchandising. Merchandise can refer to just about anything; if you can put your band’s name and or logo on it then it can serve as a way of spreading the word about your music. The challenge is to design and produce merchandise that both captures attention and is memorable. Merchandising presents a unique challenge and opportunity for designers. Below are some words of advice for those looking to get their creative juices flowing by designing some band merchandise.
Design A Logo
Having an eye catching logo will help a great deal with merchandising in general. While it can be tempting to use different fonts with different designs, it is better to stick to one font and style for your band name. This is because while you’re starting out, you’re looking to get your band’s name to stick in people’s minds, so having an instantly recognizable logo will mean that new fans can instantly recognize your stuff and you will remain in their minds.
Consider A Mascot
Incorporating a unique character into your logo design opens up whole new opportunities for merchandising. Much like your logo, a mascot will serve to cement your brand in the memories of new listeners. Some band names obviously lend themselves more naturally than others to generating a memorable mascot, but really the only limit is your imagination!
Don’t Forget the Music!
Remember that as a band your music is part of your merchandising. Even though digital formats like mp3 are more prevalent than physical distribution mediums, it is still worth producing CD’s and other physical mediums because you can brand them. CD production is now much cheaper than it used to be because companies like Copycats Media can now combine it with CD replication that allows them to make exact copies of CDs in a process much more efficiently.
Clothing probably represents the best value form of merchandising when comparing the amount of money they cost to produce, versus their value as advertising. You should treat your merchandising as a business and follow similar principles of marketing and PR. You can either bulk buy t-shirts and other items to secure a low per item cost, or you can buy blank t-shirts and decorate them yourself. You can use transferable printing paper and use logos designed on a computer.
Merchandise is essential for a new band; it will make sure that your name sticks in the minds of fans and new audiences alike.