YouTube is playing an increasingly large role in our lives, and so are the YouTubers who bring the platform to life. As entertainers, marketers, educators, and parasocial role-models, they are building brands and communities around their content. Merch is a recognizable, brandable, personal way to connect with the loyal followings these creators have worked so hard to build. Followers get to support their favorite channels and rock some dope new merch, and YouTubers get free advertising, stronger connections with their fanbase, and – most importantly – they get paid.
Today we are introducing five examples of YouTubers who are taking advantage of Spreadshop’s print-on-demand merch. Their channels come in all different sizes – from 11k subscribers to 2.5 million – but what they all have in common are dedicated followings, well-defined niches, and high-quality content. They take their core messages, iconic imagery, or community memes and use those to create desirable, well-loved viral merch.
Inspired to fire up your Shop and make money with merch? Keep reading for more ideas.
Canada: Captain Sauce
Captain Sauce is a self-described tomato-based superhero, bringing light gaming entertainment to a world shrouded in the darkness of… well, everything. On his YouTube channel he plays indie, VR, mobile, and all sorts of other games, focusing on the weird, the outrageous, and the just plain dumb. You can find him on Twitter and Facebook and join his absurd adventures and his comedy commentary.
On his Captain Sauce Spreadshop you can find various products displaying his instantly-recognizable name and logo, like this “Captain Sauce” unisex baseball tee with his name rendered in the proud tradition of sauce.
There’s also a physically accurate representation of the tomato-headed man himself, shown here on a trucker hat in his signature red, yellow, and green.
Germany: Holzkunst Scholz
Holzkunst Scholz is a YouTuber who was born when his mother carved him, fully formed, from a thousand-year oak. This artist’s preferred medium is the chainsaw, and his YouTube channel is full of chopping, chipping, carving, and – for good measure – chatting and chargrilling. You can follow him on Facebook and Instagram, or even sign up for a wood carving course on his website.
The designs in his Spreadshop are rustic, jagged, and look like they’ve been carved into the products themselves – like this tote bag featuring his iconic chainsaw logo.
Or this skull-and-chainsaw sawblade design, bringing a bit of hardcore German woodwork to the back of your iPhone.
Poland: Polish Dr Dolittle
Gosia is an animal rescuer and hero to our furry friends, volunteering for years at wild animal rehabilitation centers and orphanages. Dubbed “The Polish Dr Dolittle”, her YouTube channel showcases her work saving, rehabilitating, and caring for over 100 species of mammals. You can follow her efforts on Facebook and Instagram, or – if you speak Polish – find out more about her educational outreach programs on her website.
Her Polish Dr Dolittle Spreadshop helps fund animal rehabilitation efforts by selling designs of cute animal cartoons. These are based on photos of actual wild animals she helped care for – like these coasters featuring a group shot of the Doctor herself and a menagerie of rescued animals.
She also features individual animals – like this golden gibbon from the group shot, now starring in his own design on a pillow.
AstronoGeek’s YouTube channel is a home for all you French and Quebecois astronomy nerds, or just for anyone who loves staring at the sky. You’ll find AstronoGeek talking about black holes, crop circles, tech, space missions, and occasionally Ronald Reagan. You can find all the latest gossip about what space is up to these days on his Facebook and Instagram, or head over to his website and get in depth analysis about the earth, the stars, and the future. Join him as he fulfils his mission – to spread knowledge about astronomy, while swearing.
The AstronoGeek Spreadshop collects logos, slogans, and cool designs from his channel and offers them to his viewers on a wide range of different products – like this “I can’t, I have astronomy” T-Shirt on a plain black background.
There’s also the slightly more aggressive slogan, here on a green sweatshirt – “The Earth is flat, according to some imbeciles who never passed physics”. Somehow it sounds nicer in the original French.
UK: Foxes Afloat
Colin, Sean, and Otis are two dudes and a dog who sold their house and quit their jobs to travel around the UK on the narrowboat Silver Fox. Their channel built a community who were interested in the content and invested in the lives and lifestyle of the intrepid adventurers. After years of making videos afloat, they have now moved on to building a self-sufficient lifestyle in the Scottish highlands and documenting the experience, which you can follow on their Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or on their website.
The top comment on one of their recent videos says ‘ “I am under no obligation to make sense to anybody” needs to be on a T-Shirt’. Well, the commenter might get their wish, as the Foxes Afloat Spreadshop is full of memorable quotes from their channel, like this “You CAN’T say that!” thermal mug.
They also have cute designs based on their boating and self-sufficient adventures, like these cute cartoon chicken mousepads.
Spice up your logo, theme some designs around your core content, collect a few of your most memorable quotes, and you’re good to go! YouTube merch is a great way to connect with your viewer community and to give them the opportunity to grab some swag and show their love for your channel.
It’s now easier than ever, with YouTube opening up their MerchShelf function to channels with only 1k subscribers. This lets you showcase products right below each video, letting your viewers buy them in only a few clicks. This is a huge opportunity for niche YouTubers and smaller channels, so what are you waiting for?