How to Promote Print on Demand Products to Make More Sales
If you’re struggling to get people to your print on demand e-commerce store you may need to invest a little bit of time and effort into marketing your shop.
Here are ten things you can do to promote your print on demand products.
Build a Brand
One way to promote your print on demand products effectively is to build a brand.
Honestly, I find the phrase “building a brand” slightly overwhelming. So let’s break it down into more bite-sized pieces.
- Select an overall theme or style
- Create a logo to represent your brand
- Come up with a slogan
- Write a mission statement
- Choose your brand colors
- Choose a brand name
You can do this in any order, maybe you want to come up with what products you are going to sell and then pick a name, colors, and logo afterward. Or maybe you have a great idea for a name or know exactly what you want your brand to represent and now you need to find products that will match what the brand is all about.
You don’t need to have it all figured out right away, and it may take some trial and error to figure out exactly what you want your brand to represent or look like. That’s okay.
Just get started and the pieces will start to fall into place.
Select a Niche
You are going to here this over and over and over again. One of the best things you can possibly do for your shop is to select a niche and stick to it.
And here is why:
Let’s say you have a t-shirt store in a specific niche. When you bring traffic to your store, even if they don’t buy the original item that brought them into the store, they are more likely to buy something else as it will be similar to the item that attracted them to your shop in the first place.
Whereas is you have a general shop with no particular niche, when someone finds your shop they aren’t likely to look around long if all of the designs are completely random and unrelated.
Niching down will also help you to discover your target audience…
Figure out Your Target Market
In order to market your print on demand products successfully, you will need to know your target market. Who are the people that want to buy your products? What problem are you solving for them?
Choosing a target market is more than just selecting a specific demographic, ie men, women, teens, seniors, etc. You need to think about people’s pain points. What problem can you solve for them? What can you give them that no one else can?
Are you an eco-friendly brand that provides an environmentally friendly product or maybe you sell environmental activist merch. Maybe your target market is techies who love to code and you provide shirts with funny coding memes. Or maybe your target market is people trying to get more organized and you provide a product that helps with organization.
I’m just spitballing ideas here to give you some examples and ideas.
Disclaimer: This section contains affiliate links for products that I have personally used and recommend.
Pinterest is one of the best free ways to market your print on demand products. The basic idea is that you make pins that have a 2×3 ratio in size and you pin fresh pins daily. It’s a bit time consuming, but it works if you keep at it.
Tailwind is a huge help as it lets you schedule pins in advance so you can do a batch of pins at a time, upload them into Tailwind and they will be sent out to Pinterest during your peak traffic times.
Check out Tailwind here. (They have a free version so no need to pay)
I highly recommend Ell Duclos’s Pinterest course, Pinterest with Ell, it’s made for bloggers, but all of the information is transferable for your print on demand products. Ell manages multiple business’s Pinterest accounts and updates the course regularly with all of the strategies she uses with her clients. She also has a facebook group that you can join to ask any question for people that buy her course.
Facebook groups are another great way to market your products for free. However, you don’t want to do this in a spammy way.
There is a right way to market to Facebook groups, and there is a wrong way that will usually get you kicked out of said group.
It’s worth noting that if you’re in it for the long run, you might consider starting your own Facebook group and building it up so that you can market to them as much as you would like.
However, building up and managing your own Facebook group is a huge undertaking and many of us just don’t have the time or it’s not where we want to spend our time. So you can join already existing groups!
Now, please do not go spamming these groups with links to your store, this will get you almost nowhere. Although, there are some groups specifically for marketing your products that you can look out for.
In order to market to an already existing group without coming across spammy, you need to join a group related to your niche and engage a bit here and there. Get your name recognized in the group to build trust. Do this by providing value when you comment.
When the opportunity arises – and if you have picked a group that is related to your niche, it should arise at some point – you can make a post and showcase your design or the design on a product and just say something like: “I made this and wanted to share! Thought some of you would get a kick out of it!” Do not include your shop link. If people in the group like it, they will comment on it, and some may even ask if you sell it or where they can get one.
There’s your chance to give your link, either directly in the comment thread or by DM.
This might cost a bit of money, but it should be quite affordable and you should be able to make your money back relatively quickly if you have quality products.
There are a number of online marketplaces that are popping up on the web. Something similar to a local craft fair.
You sign up as a vendor and you are able to market your products to their audience. One online marketplace that I am aware of that is growing quite quickly is called the Glow Up Market. At the time of writing this, it is $20/month to join or $165 for a year.
Instagram can be another great way to promote your print on demand products to your target audience.
There are a few ways you can go about building your Instagram page.
- You can post photos of your designs and grow your audience by showcasing cool designs that resonate with your audience.
- You can build a following as a lifestyle page and occasionally promote your products.
- You can showcase your products in action. For example, if you sell t-shirts, you can get models to wear them and snap shots for the gram. The models can just be you and your friends, it doesn’t have to be anyone special, and audiences often respond better to average people that are much more relatable.
- You can showcase photos in your niche. For example, if you have an eco brand you can post photos promoting environmentalism or environmental facts, and then either showcase the occasional product or just link to your store in the description.
There’s so many ways to build a following on social media. The best way to figure out which strategy will work for you is to just start posting and seeing what does and doesn’t work. Or if Instagram is even the platform you want to be investing time into to promote your business at all.
Start an Email List
You can profit immensely from an email list. If you have a shop that brings in a lot of repeat customers an email list can be one of the most valuable marketing strategies to have in your arsenal.
There are a few ways to grow your list and each way works well for some and not at all for others, so it does take a little bit of trial and error.
You can offer a freebie in exchange for an email. You can collect emails when you make a sale. You can offer a discount code in exchange for an email. Etc. You need to get creative with different ways to collect potential buyer’s emails.
Paying for ads is another way to market your print on demand products. However, this is not something you want to just jump into as it’s easy to lose a lot of money really fast.
First, you will need to lock in your niche, your target market, and your branding.
You can promote your products with paid ads or almost any of the social media platforms, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, etc.
Depending on your product and your target audience, some platforms will be more suited to you than others. Make sure to do your due diligence when starting paid ads.
I can’t currently recommend a specific course, as I haven’t gone down the route of paid ads myself, but you would probably benefit and end up saving a lot of money (and earning a lot more money) in the long run by investing in a course. Don’t be afraid to invest in yourself.
Word of Mouth
You can always go old-school when promoting your print on demand store and market yourself through word of mouth. Print off some business cards and hand them out at social events. Put your shop URL on your personal Facebook and Instagram page. Tell your friends and family.
Don’t shy away from telling people about your business, you never know who your next customer could be.
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