Want to Boost Student Enrolment At Your School? Up Your Merch Game

While often overlooked, school merchandise plays a subtle yet significant role in amplifying a school’s brand and boosting its enrolment numbers. Many colleges, universities, and even primary schools are beginning to realize the potential of merchandise as a powerful marketing tool. 

Here’s a look at why partnering with an experienced and reliable one-stop-shop like R&P Prints Canada and upping your merch game can be the key to attracting more students and how you can achieve this.

The Role of Merchandise in Branding

Merchandise does more than just serve as a tangible item to remember a school by. It’s a visual representation of the school’s culture, values, and identity. When students wear a hoodie or carry a tote bag emblazoned with your school’s logo, they’re not just showcasing their loyalty. They’re effectively walking advertisements.

Think about it. Each time someone dons a t-shirt with your school’s emblem, it’s a personal endorsement. A potential student might think, “If that student is proud enough to wear their school’s logo, maybe there’s something special about that institution.”

Steps to Boost Your Merch Game

1. Understand Your Audience

Before diving into design and production, spend time understanding your audience. What do they value? What resonates with them? This insight is invaluable. Tailor your designs to appeal directly to your target demographic.

2. Collaborate with Students

Students can inject fresh perspectives and unique designs into your merchandise. Collaborating with them not only increases student engagement but also ensures that the design resonates with current and prospective students.

3. Quality Over Quantity

Students and alumni won’t wear a t-shirt that feels like cardboard or use a pen that stops working after a few uses. Quality counts. It’s better to produce fewer items of high quality than to mass-produce subpar items.

4. Diversify Your Merch

Not everyone wants a T-shirt. Some might prefer hats, pins, notebooks, or water bottles. Offering a diverse range of merchandise ensures that there’s something for everyone.

5. Host Pop-Up Shops

Consider organizing pop-up shops during significant events like school fairs, open houses, and sports events. This not only generates sales but also creates excitement and a sense of community.

6. Tap into Nostalgia

Alumni are valuable brand ambassadors. Design merchandise that invokes nostalgia, reminding them of their time at your school. This can lead to increased word-of-mouth marketing.

7. Make It Accessible

Your merchandise should be easily accessible. Have an online store, ensure the buying process is seamless, and consider offering international shipping for overseas students and alumni.

The Real Impact

So, what’s the actual impact of upping your merch game?

  1. Creates Buzz: Innovative designs or unique merchandise can create buzz both online and offline. Social media shares, tweets, or simple word-of-mouth can significantly raise awareness about your school.
  2. Builds Community: Merchandise fosters a sense of community among students, staff, and alumni. It’s a shared identity that brings people together.
  3. Generates Funds: Yes, there’s a monetary aspect to this. Properly priced and high-demand merchandise can generate significant funds, which can be reinvested in the school.
  4. Boosts Enrolment: As your school gains more visibility and positive attention through merchandise, it can lead to increased interest from prospective students.

Conclusion

School merchandise is more than just apparel or stationery. It’s a strategy, an advertisement, and a brand booster all rolled into one. To enhance enrolment, don’t just look at academic programs and facilities. Sometimes, the answer might just be in a well-designed hoodie.