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8 Reasons Why Custom Apparel Printing is Important in Branding

8 Reasons Why Custom Apparel Printing is Important in Branding

Branding is a critical component for any company. Your colours, fonts, and logos allow people to identify you. The application of such branding elements is vast. It can be on the company website or even in marketing merchandise.

Think about flyers, t-shirts, caps, and more when marketing merchandise. Custom apparel printing enables companies to create brand visibility. It is an effective marketing tool that continues to have relevance to date.

Statista report shows the growth of the global custom t-shirt printing market. As of 2016, it was worth 1.16 billion US dollars. The value has continued to rise. As of 2022, it stands at $2.26billion. The projections for the industry by 2025 place it at over $3 billion.

Let us look at why custom apparel printing is essential in branding.

Custom Apparel Printing: What Is It?

Custom Apparel Printing Company Services

Custom apparel printing differs from mass production items. Such are specific to what the buyer requests. A company places an order, giving the manufacturer or designer exact specifications. 

The company can request to print its name on the front of the t-shirt or cap. In other cases, it could be an image or text. You will often find custom apparel in n sports teams, school or military uniforms. 

Businesses also use custom apparel for branding‌. You may have attended industry events like conferences or trade shows. It is pretty easy to identify individuals from one company because of the branded apparel. 

Some companies also use such branded merchandise as giveaways. A popular option for most is t-shirts. Custom t-shirt printing provides a fantastic solution to your branding needs. The company can include logos or taglines on the t-shirts for ‌easy identification. 

Further, such companies produce attractive clothing; people will wear it anytime. You can have the prints on a wide range of designs. Such include short or long sleeve t-shirts, women’s t-shirts, kids’ t-shirts, and tank tops.

You also have complete control over placing design elements. Some people will choose to have the design across the chest. Others go for the shoulders, back, or on the collar. Indeed, there is no limit to the creativity you can get. You need to hire the right designers to develop awesome t-shirts

What to Consider When Choosing Custom Apparel Printing Services

Choose the right custom apparel printing services since you’re investing in your branding. Some critical factors to consider include:

  • A range of apparel options like what we touched on above. Also, check that the company has different sizes available.
  • Tons of varieties in design features. The company should not, for example, restrict you to a specific font or colour. They should give you a wide range of options to get the one that best suits your needs. See what ‌ideas the company offers. But don’t lose total control because your input is also critical. If they are not willing to listen to your ideas, opt for other apparel printing providers. 
  • The type of printing options available. Some include screen printing, dye sublimation, and direct-to-garment. Others are heat press printing, vinyl cutting, hand spraying, and airbrushing.
  • dedicated account manager whose core task is to cater to your needs. It can be frustrating if you do not have one person to talk to when following up on order. The manager should be available by phone, email, or live chat when you need them. 
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Benefits of Apparel Printing To Branding

Let’s now go to the significant discussion of this article. In the end, you will know why spending on custom apparel printing is a wise business decision.

Cost-Effective Advertising

T-Shirt Design Brand Marketing

Does your company put some of its marketing budgets on billboards? You may also do the same for print or electronic media. We cannot argue with the efficacy of such advertising methods. Indeed, the discussion would be worthy of its own full-length article.

Some people will say that such media is a waste of good money. This is because it can be pretty tricky to measure the ROI. Others still find such avenues good marketing platforms. The one thing they cannot dispute is the cost factor.

Custom apparel is a very effective marketing tool. Your company sponsors a popular event like a concert or sports event. As a giveaway, your marketing team hands out 5000 branded t-shirts. True, it would be unrealistic to expect all the 5000 recipients to wear the t-shirts.

But you can be sure of a significant number donning them. Who would have a problem wearing a cute t-shirt, even if branded? A quick trip to the grocery store does not need formal dressing up. That ‘cool’ t-shirt paired with jeans is good enough. Let’s not forget a trip to the beach when you need a cover-up. 

So, what does this mean for the brand? Well, whoever is wearing the t-shirt is like a walking advertisement. This isn’t like a billboard that stays in one position until you take it down. Now, what if 3,500 event attendees end up wearing your branded T-shirts? Well, you have 3,500 walking billboards. Best of all, they are in different locations.

Long Term Advertising Opportunity

Another strong point in favour of custom apparel is long-term advertising. You may have that one t-shirt you got at a company event years ago. The company paid much attention to the design and quality. Indeed, it has become the go-to t-shirt when you want casual wear.

Few people will wear an item of clothing once and then throw it in the trash. Chances are they will wear the t-shirts for years to come. Estimations on the number of times someone will wear an average piece of clothing is about 120 times. So, out of the 3,500 event attendees above, they will wear the t-shirt maybe 50 times.

Now, where did we put the other 1500 t-shirt recipients? Well, some may re-gift the branded T-shirt. Others will leave it lying in the cupboard and donate it to some worthy cause. Someone, somewhere, may one day end up wearing the T-shirt. And, by now, you know what that means for the brand.

Brand Awareness Opportunities

Kumho Tires Baseball Cap

Custom apparel gives you a fantastic way to create brand awareness. Let’s go back to the example of industry events. When the team members walk around, other people will notice the branding.

You may have asked someone which company they work for because of their branded clothes. As stated, apparel printing allows for much creativity. Choose a design that is likely to create curiosity or engagement.

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Remember about the usual ‘formal’ corporate branding guidelines to stand out. After all, you want people to notice the branding. Bring out the brand personality in the designs you go for. Let’s say you want to position your business as fun and energetic. 

Then, you go for a basic white T-shirt with a small logo on the sleeve. Are you communicating the brand personality?

How about a splash of colour and an exciting design instead. You will generate more interest with such apparel. And, people, including your staff members, will have no problem wearing them. 

We are not saying that you should ignore the branding guidelines. Creative designers know how to stay within the boundaries without stifling their creativity.

Versatility and Tons of Choices

Custom apparel printing offers much versatility. We have talked about creativity. The brand can differentiate itself from the competitors with unique branding ideas. A break from the standard company apparel is an idea.

Short sleeve t-shirts, for example, are a popular choice. Your company can opt for long sleeve turtlenecks or sleeveless tank tops instead.

As we shared above, you also have material quality and printing techniques.

Apparel Printing is Inexpensive

Printing a few custom apparel can be expensive. But bulk production will provide excellent savings for the company. You also ‌negotiate some fantastic discounts. Best of all, you will always have stock whenever you need it. 

Do note that the printing technique will significantly impact the cost. Screen printing is more expensive than laser printing. Heat transfer, vinyl cut-outs, and stencils work well for smaller jobs. 

Very intricate designs that need many colours will also drive up the cost. You’re better off keeping within the three-colour range. 

We reiterate our earlier point of picking the right designers. Creative designers can come up with some pretty interesting designs. All while sticking to the bare minimum. 

Staff Branding Opportunities

Marketing Through Custom T-Shirts Events

Custom branded apparel provides plenty of stop branding opportunities. The casual dress down Friday will look more professional with branded clothes. You maintain a professional look by having everyone look the same.

It also helps avoid casual attire that some employees may prefer. We all know that one colleague raises eyebrows with their clothing choices on dress-down days. 

Branded t-shirts are comfortable. But, be careful about the choice of material. Soft cotton, for example, is breathable and ideal for any season. Further, you foster a team spirit when everyone, including the managers, wears branded apparel. 

Take it a step further by making it easy for customers to identify your employees. You can, for example, have the job position printed on the t-shirt. Branded apparel can be an important identifier. Even if the team goes out to the market, customers will know that they are dealing with company employees.

Branded Apparel to Trigger Positive Emotions

Customers can identify the brand through branded apparel. Yet, you also ‌evoke positive emotions. An interesting design element will get people talking. As we said, it can elicit curiosity.

But that’s not all. You can communicate your standing with what you have in the design. Let’s say you lean towards sustainability. It is easy to communicate the same on branded apparel. The printing company can choose powerful images to communicate your position. Anyone who shares your beliefs will want to know more about the company. 

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Imagine a t-shirt with an image showing the danger of cutting trees. Under the image could be a catchy phrase to give more meaning to the visual. The message could be We support sustainability. Talk to us if you do as well.’ 

Remember, branding can be in-your-face or subtle. The latter is more powerful because it makes people think. 

Branded Apparel for Promotions or Customer Gifts

Giveaway Promotional Shirts Swag Events

Printed custom apparel is great for promotions. The most important thing is to ensure that customers will want it. For such purposes, go for exclusive items. That way, the lucky few who get them will feel special.

Sending loyal customers branded apparel can win you some brownie points. It shows that you’re thinking about them, and they are unique. Take it further by personalising what you send to the best customers. Imagine receiving an item of clothing with your name on it.

Or, how about a stylish, high-quality shirt, naming them the best customers? Even better still, it recognises the customer’s relationship with your business. Something like ‘Celebrating our 10th anniversary with you, here’s too many more. You can be sure that such a slight gesture can win the company a lifelong customer.

Final Thoughts

Custom apparel printing services play a critical role in branding. The company can achieve a lot in raising brand awareness. A t-shirt, for example, has the power of a walking billboard. It is a practical piece of clothing that someone will wear for a long time.

The marketing team can use the apparel for promotions or giveaways. Branding employees ensure you can maintain a professional look even on dress-down days. The most important thing is to choose high-quality apparel.

Opt for creative designs that will make the apparel attractive and stylish. You want people to notice the design to spark curiosity and conversation. Choose the right printing company to supply your branded apparel. They should offer tons of quality material, designs, and printing options.

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Stuart Crawford

Stuart Crawford is an award-winning creative director and brand strategist with over 15 years of experience building memorable and influential brands. As Creative Director at Inkbot Design, a leading branding agency, Stuart oversees all creative projects and ensures each client receives a customised brand strategy and visual identity.

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