Grow your list of top fans by running a BF promotion
Streaming numbers, social media engagement and live performance attendance all tell different stories about your success as an artist. At times it’s difficult to determine which data set is most relevant to you.
We advocate selling directly to your fans for this very reason. When you own your storefront, you own all of the data that surrounds sales - which is much more relevant than macro demographics or location data.
Black Friday is an opportunity to build your data set by specifying fans who are most likely to purchase from your shop again. If you’re gearing up for an album cycle, it’s important to gauge who is most likely to participate in a future pre-order.
We’ve come up with three different strategies you can use on BF to sharpen your marketing efforts and make your next album release count.
1) Revisit old merch
With the advent of “print on demand”, holding inventory is no longer required. But if you’ve bought bulk merch in the past, you may still be sitting on old shirts or CD’s. Use this dated merch to offer fans a deal they can’t refuse - with the goal to gather relevant data about who is likely to purchase from you in the future.
For those who have so much leftover merch that they don’t know what to do with… check out Jack Johnson’s upcycle idea. He created blankets using old tour shirts. Not only are the blankets unique, but the promotion is limited. We’ve touched on this in past blogs, but using scarcity is a great way to drive fans to complete a purchase in your shop.
You can even create Black Friday bundles with past merch and a new product. List the contents in each bundle, or take from the Absolute Merch shop and offer “Mystery Bags”.
2) Create holiday products
When you can offer new products without printing inventory, your creativity can shine. You’re free to try new designs without worrying about getting stuck with what doesn’t sell.
This opens you up to develop “holiday themed” products. Some popular POD holiday items are: Christmas stockings, hats, gloves, mittens, mugs, and sweaters.
Choose products that most reflect who you are as an artist. If your merchandise aligns with your brand, image or style - fans will connect with it as an extension of your music.
There is no better way to entice fans than offering something for free. “But… won’t I lose a bunch of money by giving away merch?” Not necessarily. You can easily bake the manufacturing cost into S&H and pass this along to customers. Even better - if you set the shipping rate high enough, you’ll meet Nielsen’s minimum pricing requirement and can deliver a charting digital album with each sale.
Lil Pump offered free “Esskeetit” chains in the final days of his album’s week 1. Not only did he earn a charting album sale with each purchase, he gathered fan data to be used in all future marketing efforts. This wasn’t a list of Spotify listeners or concert attendees - rather a group of fans willing to take out their credit cards and complete a purchase from his shop.
So take a step back this Black Friday and look at the bigger picture. Understand that the lifetime value of the fan is more significant than the margin on a particular product. By focusing to grow a list of engaged fans, you’re setting yourself up for future success.
Check out our past blog posts for some innovative merch ideas, marketing tips, and ideas on how you can automate processes in your web store.