Monthly Archives: December 2016

Dec 21

That’s Your Fashion Website? Really?

By Maria Pesin | Fashion , Sales , Vibe Consulting

This weekend I was at the Palisades Mall in Rockland County, NY.

It’s one of the largest malls in the US, so you’d think they get lots of traffic, no?

Especially since it is getting so close to Christmas.

Like most people, I was there shopping for presents.

However, the mall was not especially busy. Maybe it was because it snowed that morning, but the roads were pretty clear. In my neck of the woods it takes more than a bit of snow to slow people down.

While there I stopped by a one of the jewlery store chains to buy a necklace for my daughter.

The sales clerk was very helpful and friendly, and we got to talking about business (my favorite subject).

She had been working there for 3 years and was a commissioned salesperson. She said her first year was killer, but the following ones had been lackluster, at best. She attributed this to people shopping on line and not coming into the store like they used to.

And here’s the truth.

I myself I had bought 7 gifts on line that day, and only one in a store.

This is the new reality.

Since most on line stores are offering free shipping and make shopping so easy, who wouldn’t want to just shop on line?

So, if this is the new reality why wouldn’t all fashion brands have a kick ass website?

Believe me some don’t.

This is more than perplexing. Lots of companies big and small skimp on their sites, and I just don’t get it.

When you consider that, at the very least, your webiste is your calling card, and at its best a very lucrative selling platform it just makes no sense.

Considering these days it doesn’t take a fortune to make one you should absolutely have the best website money can buy.

It is imperative for every business to have a website.

The more professional your website is, the more advantages you can gain.

Think of it as a store without the rent.

The more interesting and engaging the better your sales will be.

Dec 15

Fashion Entreprenuers and The Bright Shiny Penny Syndrome

By Maria Pesin | Business , Fashion , Vibe Consulting

How are you feeling?

Be careful – there’s a nasty bug going around.

One of the biggest issues I see new clients suffering from is what I call the bright shiny penny syndrome. Now, don’t get me wrong. We’ve all done it every once in a while. We decide on a corse of action that we know will benefit our business and then bam… someone calls us with the latest new marketing program, or tells us of a fashion show that we are invited to be a part of that is almost free (yeah sure) and off we go running to participate.

Result? Usually squandering our time and money. Bye bye goes our strategic marketing plans. Hello new marketing idea that isn’t worth your effort, or won’t produce fruit because you don’t stick with it long enough.

Shiny pennies reflect a fiery glow that is hard to avoid. New pennies have power. Old pennies are dull and boring. We have willed the new penny with charm, a source of inspiration, as we traverse along the pathway of possibilities.

The penny is representative of all the ideas and opportunities that land in front of us, one right after the other.

The problem with the bright shinny penny syndrome is that it distracts you from doing the tried and true methods that you have committed to. Let’s face it they get boring. There is promise with the new penny. Just like there is promise with a new marketing effort. The truth is any kind of marketing plan requires repitition and consistency. Without that they are useless.

Marketing also takes time till it pays off.

It’s enticing to move on when we don’t see quick results.

This is not to say the new should be avoided. Innovating and testing are important. But there is a time and place. You must think it through and do your research before you jump in.

The overwhelming desire to continually focus on the new shiny penny can be a big distraction from working on the current marketing plan. So be careful that your not caught up in this syndrome.

Otherwise, you may end up with less than a penny in your bank account!

Dec 05

My Secret Recipe for a Successful & Affordable Fashion Photo Shoot

By Maria Pesin | Business , Fashion , Vibe Consulting

It’s tempting.

When trying to keep expenses down it is all too easy to skimp on photography.

A cheap model, an inexpensive photographer, no hair and makeup person. Some people do their own photography and ask their friends (who they think are really pretty) to be their models. However, you get what you pay for.

Namely, amateur looking photography that doesn’t adequately showcase your product.

Considering you are going to use this for press, your on line sales, contacting buyers, and social media, this strategy doesn’t make sense. Compromising the quality of your photography can and will compromise your business. I am not saying you have to spend $25,000, but you must allocate enough funds to do it right.

So what does doing it right look like?

1. Theme – Decide what you want your photos to look like. There needs to be a thread that ties them together. For example you might be doing an activewear line and decide to shoot models working out on the beach. Mood boards are very helpful in fleshing out the look you wish to create.

2. Models – Models can make or break a shot. A good model knows how to move to show your product in the best light. Schedule a “go-see” with modeling agents. This term is used in the Modeling Industry when a model goes out to meet with you. It’s basically like an audition. Here is your opportunity to see their photo book and see how they photograph and how versatile they are. Use this opportunity to have them try on some of your product and see how they look in it. Then decide which models you want. Have a couple of back ups in case they aren’t available when you go to book them.

3. Photographer – There are many, many photographers out there. However, they are not all good choices. Look at their work to see if you like what they do. They should be able to make your designs look great by using good equipment, lighting correctly, guiding the model, and pretty much directing the shoot. Do they specialize in fashion photography? When you talk to them do they get the story you’re trying to convey?

4. Stylist – A good stylist will find props and other clothing or accessories that will enhance your product without taking away the viewer’s attention. They also have contacts that they can go to for the items they need, contacts you might not have.

5. Hair and Makeup Artist – You need a makeup artist that understands how to make a person look their best and is capable of applying makeup with techniques that will save you time and retouching in post production. They will constantly be touching up during the shoot to keep your model looking fresh.

6. Know what you need ahead of time. Do you need horizontal hero shots for your website? Vertical product shots for your catalogs? Decide on how many final shots you need. Nothing is worse than investing and a photo shoot only to realize later that you forgot the one essential shot you needed.

In conclusion, do your homework and be frugal, but not cheap. Fashion is a visual industry and having awesome images can make the difference between doing just okay or hitting a home run out of the park.

If you’d like some help in making sure that you get your photoshoot done correctly, feel free to contact me here.