Make movie merchandise that people will actually buy. (Special for Indie Filmmakers)

Toys Movies

In the old days, indie filmmakers were insecure about selling movie merchandise because they were concerned they would look like Hollywood sell-outs.

Nowadays movie merchandising is a different story. The concept of selling film themed items used to be that it was a cheap way to make more money. Audiences now see movie merchandise as collectibles to remember a film they enjoyed a lot. Even people that didn’t see the movie can enjoy merchandise that is good looking and useful. Now, in order to be able to make a profit from movie merchandising, you really need to take in consideration what qualities will make people actually buy your merch.

The following are some tips for having a more successful film-merchandising sell:

Function: The items you want to sell need to be useful to lots of people, so that when they ask themselves whether they should purchase an item or not, the final push will be “Yes I will buy it, I need it anyway…” Think about how many popular it is for people to drink tea or coffee in a daily basis. Now think about how much potential there is if they could drink it in a super cool mug like this one:

2010-04-23 12-27-19 Coffee mug for Superman - IMG_3309

Cheap: Let’s face it, not a lot of people will buy merch that costs more than $20, especially if your film is not a blockbuster. It’s better to seel items of lesser value, and since they are cheaper, chances are that you will sell more.

Cute: T-Shirst and Tumblrs, sure those are awesome. But there is also big market on selling push dolls or making everyday items cuter. If your film is an animation or appealing to kids and teenagers, then this consideration is a must. Check out how cute this “Grease” legos are:


Wearable: Selling T-shirts always sounds like a good way to go. And sure, your mother and grandpa will wear a shirt with your film logo and name on it, but really who else will buy it? Well, a good way to increase your apparel sell is by making it actually wearable. They need to look good on people and there needs to be different sizes available. A los of possible buyers will pass on buying clothing item because they are only sold in “one size only,” or because they come in a weird fabric won’t fit them nicely. It is a good idea to hire a designer that could come up with an impressive and more appealing design. Is not about just putting a movie poster on a tee, or having the faces of their actors floating on a short. Instead, be creative and make conceptual designs, ones that people will be proud to wear in the streets, not only when they are sleeping.

 Quality: Would you be happy if you buy something that breaks the minute you use it? No. Will you recommend people to buy it? No. Then don’t sell bad quality merch, not only it will be bad for your selling, but it will also give you a bad reputation among your audience.


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