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How to Make Movie Merch that People Will Actually Buy

Indie filmmakers today are now savvier when it comes to marketing their films practically and creatively. Gone are the days when filmmakers were still hesitant to sell movie merch because they’re concerned that they’d look like Hollywood sell-outs.  Gone are those days mainly because they now have a different view on movie merchandise- from being a cheap way to get more money to simple collectibles to remember their film. Besides, people prefer to borrow or download stuff online so this is one way filmmakers can recoup their expenses. So they’ll have enough funds for their next film. You’re reading this so I assume you’re one of them.

Okay, so… how do you make a merch that people will actually buy? Sure, your friends, family, and neighbors will probably buy your stuff to show their support but only because they’re too kind. But what about the rest of the people? How can you convince them to actually buy your film’s merchandise? Here are some of our tips:

It helps if your film merch is…

Functional. Choose items that will be a lot of use to lots of people so that when they contemplate whether they should purchase your stuff or not, the final push would be “alright, I’m gonna buy it. I’m going to need some of these anyway…”. You can find funky USB bracelets (1G) that cost $4 or even less and then print a quote from your movie. Some other stuff I can think of:memo cards, organizers, slap-on watches, wrist bands, mugs.

Cheap and cute. Only few people buy merch that costs more than $20 especially if your film is indie. Choose items that do not cost a lot and make it cute or unusual. If your film is about food, you can make cute rubber keychains. If you have an animated film, make small plushies instead of just tees and tumblers. Check out this Thor plush.

Wearable. Well, people still love tees especially if they really, really look good. And this is good for your film’s marketing as well. Hire a good designer who can come up with a really impressive design. Do not simply put your movie poster in the tee. Don’t simply put the faces of your actors in the tee. Be creative and make conceptual designs or else no one buys it except your friends and their moms. Also, Make sure you put your tees in a very creative T-shirt packaging. Here are some of the coolest T-shirt packaging that will surely inspire you.

I think if you follow the ones mentioned above,  your merch will surely be selling like  hot cakes. Just make sure you have exceptionally creative designs, creative packaging for the merch, and most of all, since the economy is bad and you’re an indie filmmaker, make sure your merch do not cost a fortune. You want them to be impressed by your merch, you want them to touch it and talk about it, but more than anything- you want them to buy it.


Unified Manufacturing is an L.A. -based one-stop-shop that offers very affordable CD/DVD/USB replication, custom printing, promotional products, warehousing and fulfillment and many more. If you need an Instant Quote on a project and you want FREE SHIPPING, simply CLICK HERE.

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