There are so many ways you can offer merch benefits to your patrons. In this article, we’ll discuss different Merch programs you can offer – from limited-time merch drops to monthly merch clubs and everything in between!
While deciding which merch programme is right for you, you might find a few of our other resources helpful. For details on when current and new patrons will earn merch, visit our guide on patrons' earning period.
You can also learn more about how to delete or retire your merch items in this guide on managing your merch items.
Recurring merch programmes
We think the best way to offer merch to your patrons is using our loyalty programme feature. A loyalty programme delivers four items that you select to a patron over the first year of their pledge.
Receiving a new merch delivery every three months that they pledge gives each patron ongoing value, and that makes it easy for them to stick around. Even better, since every patron earns the four items on their own schedule after they sign up, you can be sure that everyone gets a consistent, excellent experience without any extra scheduling or tracking effort from you. To make the most of your loyalty programme, consider placing less expensive items earlier in the programme and more expensive items at the end.
Seasonal recurring merch
What if you don’t want your patrons to earn recurring merch on individual schedules, and instead want to promote the same merch product to all your patrons at strategic times of the year? One example may be seasonal merch drops for spring, summer, autumn, and winter. You can absolutely offer this for your patrons, with some ongoing action from you.
To start this programme simply publish a single merch item to your tiers before March starts (the beginning of spring in the Northern Hemisphere), then at the end of May retire that item and replace it with a new item for summer. Repeat this process again at the end of August and October, and your patrons who pledge for the whole year will earn all four items. When you end each item, make sure that you retire the item instead of deleting it so that patrons receive the merch they’re due.
Seasonal recurring merch can be a great way to drive ongoing buzz about your membership. And best of all, patrons are still required to pledge for three months to receive the item, so you don’t have to worry about patrons signing up and then leaving.
Monthly merch clubs
Maybe you’re interested in starting a Poster of the Month or Sticker of the Month club? To offer this programme to your patrons simply publish a new item at the end of every month, while also retiring the item from the previous month. Patrons will earn a new item every month, starting three months after they pledge. Be sure to create a new item every time you want your patrons to earn something – if you only edit the design of an item patrons will only earn that item once with the latest design.
Other merch programmes
Merch welcome gift
Not sure where to start? A welcome gift is the simplest way to add merch to your membership. Simply publish a one-time delivery item to your tiers, and every patron will earn the item once, three months after they start their pledge. Want to update your design? You can edit it at any time without changing your patrons’ progress.
Limited-time merch drop
A limited-time merch drop can be a fantastic way to encourage patrons to join your membership. To offer limited-time merch, simply choose the one-time delivery option, publish the item to your tiers, and then retire the item from your tiers when you are ready to end the offering.
Patrons who pledge while the item is on your tiers will be eligible to earn it, and as always they are required to pledge for three months to earn the item. Be sure to promote to your patrons before you publish your merch drop, and also let them know when the offering is about to end!
Merch bundles or loot boxes can be an exciting way to earn swag. Unfortunately, we aren’t currently able to pack multiple merch items together into a single delivery. We're also unable to randomise which items a patron receives. However, patrons can earn multiple merch items at the same time.
If your tier is priced high enough to allow it, you can add multiple merch items to any tier, and the patron will earn all the items together. Earning multiple items at once can be combined with any of the programmes mentioned here except loyalty programmes.