With no in-person events or campus contact during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, merchandise may seem impossible, but it isn't. Reach out to the Get Australia team and we can help you set up merchandise delivery, straight to your members' doors.
It's fairly common to see university clubs and societies promoting their new club t-shirts or hoodies. These are regular merchandise items that you'll find across most, if not all, clubs who run merch. T-shirts and hoodies are great, don't get us wrong - but there are only so many that your average student is going to want or be able to buy. We've compiled some ideas for some lesser-done merchandise items that your club can produce - to give value to your members and boost revenue.
Rubber phone wallet pockets are very popular these days. A lot of people use phone wallets to keep their cards and phone in one place, and not have to carry a wallet or purse when they leave the house. Lucky for you, they're also incredibly cheap to produce with your own logo and colour customisation - savings that you can pass on. It's a great way to provide your members with an item that they were likely going to buy already, just with your branding - every time they pick up their phone (think about how many times you do that in a day) they'll be reminded of you.
This is an idea mainly for those societies that surround technology - Media societies, DJ societies, photography societies, and the like. If the course or hobby that your club focuses on requires a USB to be used at some point or another, why shouldn't it come from you? 64 or even 128GB USBs are affordable to purchase online with custom branding and colours, and if you play your cards right and order in bulk, you could even end up beating the price for a similar product from a retail store - saving your members money on something they were going to buy anyway.
Almost everyone who receives a flimsy tote bag never uses it again. This much we know. But with the convenience, style and low environmental impact of using sturdy canvas tote bags, they have become a commodity, especially for the student demographic. It's affordable to buy nice quality, branded tote bags that people will want to pay for and re-use; they know it will last them a long time. Here at Get Australia, we've produced tote bags of our own, and we recommend AS Colour for great quality. Additionally, unlike some other products, tote bags have plenty of room for design. Get creative with what you're putting on your tote - source artworks from your member community or use a witty quote/text relevant to your club, alongside your logo. If you're not sure between a few options, let your members vote! They'll feel engaged as part of the process and as a result will be more likely to buy your tote bag when it's available.
Water Bottles/Hydro Flasks
There are a huge variety of different types of re-usable water bottles or (currently trendy) hydro flasks available to brand. This again aligns with the sustainable priorities of students as well as exercising responsibility as a club. This is especially a good idea in summer, but everyone needs water bottles all year round. It's yet another thing they will constantly see and be reminded of your brand - it may prompt them to purchase a ticket to an upcoming event.
Let's face it - students drink alcohol. Most of university culture is centred on drinking - bars on campus, student parties in clubs, etc. - and the vast majority of students take part. Seeing this behaviour, something that provides your members with incredible value, hence making them more likely to buy it, is a bottle opener. There's nothing more endearing for your brand than someone at a pre-drinks needing a bottle opener, and someone goes, "Oh, I have a [Insert Club Name] one, here". These are also incredibly cheap to produce and customise, in keyring form most commonly, meaning you won't need to charge people a fortune to still make a small profit to support the club.
These are just five ideas out of thousands of possible merchandise items. The most important thing to consider when planning merchandise is what your members actually want. This will give them value, making them want to purchase it, and have the side benefits of growing your club, decreasing the order risk, and building a small profit to support other club initiatives.