SETTING UP A FASHION BUSINESS: A GUIDE
In the medieval age, fashion was considered a privilege of the elite. There was a clear distinction between the attire of the peasants from that of the landlords.
This brings us to a crucial question, what is the definition of
From an eagle's eye, the fashion industry looks like a bowl of assorted cereals. So, the definition of fashion cannot be written in stone. Fashion is every individual’s choice, it is dynamic and ever-evolving.
Fashionpreneur in the current scenario? Is it a practical choice?
It has delivered messages like “less is more” and “sustainability is the way forward”. Consumers are embracing the minimalist lifestyle. Set your business strategies accordingly, to relate to the audience.
The fashion industry has a diverse range of products that cater to different types of people, their needs, desires and aspirations. Products like clothing and apparel, accessories, bags, shoes, watches, jewelry and much more have been scaled up by niche business entrepreneurs to become luxury brands that serve an experience, not just satisfy a need. Such brands have a clear identity and their line products are aligned with the values of the brand.
Accordingly, its range of beauty and body care products is made using 100% natural ingredients. Their products are cruelty-free and vegan which means that none of the ingredients, formulations, or finished products are tested on animals or made from products generated through animals.
Does that mean you cannot build a brand around an existing product?
You can. But remember, a brand isn’t built overnight. Workaround the features and benefits of your product. Analyze every way in which your product serves the consumer’s demands. Construct an identity around these factors. You might cry out- “It’s a task!” But once you’ve done it, it’ll be worth the effort. Because branding is as essential as production (some say it’s the most important).
Let me help you with a tool for gap analysis. It’s a basic yet effective SWOT analysis chart. List down your strengths and weaknesses of your business. List down the opportunities and threats that can cause harm to your business from an external factor. Analyze how you can use your strengths to minimize weaknesses and use the best available opportunities to avoid or get rid of the threats.
- Single brand: A single-brand retailer is expected to sell all the products under only one label across its stores like Levi's and Zara.
- Multi-brand store: Multi-brand retail store is like a typical Shoppers Stop or Lifestyle which sweeps many brands under one roof.
- E-commerce brand: Setting up your business online by creating a website or an app like Myntra will give you the benefit of technology in business.
- Exclusive boutique/ fashion studio: Unlike stores, boutiques and fashion studios sell products that are lesser in number, personalised and customised to the needs of individual buyers.
Here are a few digital marketing opportunities that fashion
brands can hop on:
- Retarget visitors: Now these are people who are already aware of and interested in your brand. Why would you possibly want to lose them? Time to get ‘em back!Your website stores cookies that enable visitors’ actions to be tracked. When a visitor spends time on your website or makes a move- like adding some products to the cart, they can be retargeted. Your ads can follow them wherever they go next- be it google, a third-party website/app, social media, or anywhere on the internet! Now, the way you create your ads depends on your strategy. The point is to remind the customer that they need to come back to your website. But be careful to not overdo with those ads. Excessive ads can be annoying too. Know the right balance.
- Social media strategy: Fashion and luxury brands are fascinated by the scope offered by social media. Rightly so, social media has been successful in holding the attention of fashion lovers through glamorous visuals. Through social media, fashion brands can connect with their audience closely by initiating engagements through their posts and stories. Brands are using this platform to communicate their brand values and create a brand image in the minds of consumers. By customizing the feed with brand colors, using high-quality images, and being prompt with responses, you can work on the way your brand is perceived by people. Your content that you publish need not only be about your fashion products or services. Your customers want to know you as a brand, the people behind the scenes, the process and efforts that go into the making of the product, the causes that your brand is fighting. Collectively, this will increase your brand value.
- Blogs: Showcase your expertise by writing about them for people to read. Blogs serve as a source of generating credibility for a brand. Write about trending topics around your business, structure some style guides, inform them about upcoming trends in the fashion industry and so much more. You can explore the depths of the internet to generate topic inspirations for writing blogs that your audience is craving.
- Work with Influencers: Fashion bloggers and vloggers have a huge audience that follows them. This audience has a sense of trust and relationship with the influencer. Therefore, when influencers recommend your product/brand, their followers will automatically begin to trust your brand. The challenge here is to choose the right influencer whose audience is your potential customer. Now that requires research! Research on influencers’ work and their audience.