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Starting a Fashion Brand: First Things First

By Maria Pesin | Fashion

The Fashion Industry is filled with opportunity and promise. While breaking into the Fashion Industry can seem intimidating, it can be both personally and financially rewarding. However, there are measures that must be taken when starting a clothing brand. You can’t just automatically hit the ground running without first laying the foundation for your brand. It may seem difficult to distinguish where to begin and when you are ready to launch your brand, but I have compiled a simplified list to clarify the proper steps from the beginning until you are ready to launch. This can seem like a daunting task but it will allow you to have longevity in the marketplace.

These are the initial measures you must take when starting a new clothing brand:

1) Choose Your Product:

The first step to do before you do anything else is choosing a specific product and developing it from there. This sets up your brand focus. Having a brand focus is what sets you apart from other companies. For instance, would you want to produce men’s or women’s clothes?, Missy or contemporary? These questions are very crucial in developing your product. While you can branch into other products after establishing your product, focus on your initial product first. I can’t stress enough how important it is to hone in on a specific product and develop it from there.

2) Research Your Competition:

Once you have chosen your product, research the competition in the common marketplace. Who else is out there with similar products? Who is your competition? What makes you stand out from your competition? These are vital questions to answer because you don’t want to drown in a sea of fish that are already afloat. Do a competitive analysis to see where you stand. You want to have a lasting product that is impactful in the industry.

3) Identify Your USP (Unique Selling Proposition)

According to Entrepreneur Magazine the definition of a competitive analysis is, “Identifying your competitors and evaluating their strategies to determine their strengths and weaknesses relative to those of your own product or service.” In other words establish who your competitors are and what makes you stand out in the marketplace. To delve deeper into this, identify your USP (Unique Selling Proposition.) What makes you special? What makes your product unique amongst competitors? Answering these questions will give you an idea whether your product will be successful or if you should go in a different direction selling a different product entirely.

 4) Pinpoint Your Target Customer

Every product you design should depend on the needs and wants of your target customer. A common beginners misconception is to market everything to everyone, but this will be very time consuming and costly. Not even the biggest brands can afford to do this. While you can sell to everyone, it is best to design for a specific niche customer. Overall, always put the needs of your customer first to have a successful brand.

 5) Identify Where You Stand in The Marketplace

After you identify these elements, identify where you stand in the marketplace. If you are not bringing anything new or fresh to the table, chances of flourishing in the industry are slim. I once had a client who produced yoga wear. This was when this was a hot trend and multiple brands were selling yoga wear. I suggested he try another avenue of yoga wear besides just yoga pants because that was already being done. He didn’t take my advice and ultimately his brand failed because he didn’t bring anything new or unique to the table. The fashion industry is a competitive atmosphere and staying ahead of that competition will yield positive results.

Once you have identified these elements, you are now ready to move onto the next phase of starting your business. My goal is to give you the recipe to success by laying the foundational elements in place. If you have any inquiries about starting your clothing brand, feel free to visit my website www.vibeconsulting.co and download my free e-book, “14 Essential Truths Everyone in The Fashion Industry Should Know.”

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About the Author

Maria Pesin knows fashion, especially the business side of the fashion industry. Do you know how Manolo Blahnik got his start in the industry? How he leveraged a paltry 3 grand into one of the world’s most famous luxury brands? While she doesn’t take credit for Manolo’s success, Maria has walked a similar path on numerous occasions. The world of fashion is not silicon valley, and it has nothing to do with Madison Avenue marketing. In this industry there is ALWAYS room for something new and exciting, but you have to have your ducks in a row. If that’s what you need, believe me, Maria is the General Patton of fashion ducks!

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14 ESSENTIAL TRUTHS EVERYONE IN THE FASHION BUSINESS SHOULD KNOW.
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