Starting a new fashion business is hard but not impossible. I have a delightful new client. He has a wonderful product. It is unique and salable at the same time. His website is creative and he is off to a good start. But, he is nervous. And he is not alone. Many of my start up fashion brands run into the same thing when they are starting out. They seriously struggle to make sales. These days being new and fresh is not necessarily something stores are looking for. They want tried and true brands that they know their customers want and business is so tough for these buyers that they are resistant to taking chances. The days of looking for the next new thing is gone for most retailers.
That is the scary part of starting a new brand. However the good news is if you have something great you can do business. And you can build a successful and highly profitable business. You just need to do the right things to build your business. You also need to have patience.
I describe starting a new business to riding a bike up a steep hill. The first few peddles are almost impossible. It seems like you can’t even get started yet alone reach the top. The next few peddles are still very tough but not quite impossible. Then the next few seem to start catching a momentum. Before you know it you are getting into a rhythm and you finally reach the top and are able to coast on all the hard work you did. Not that you ever stop peddling because you don’t want to stop your forward movement. But, now it’s much easier to get where you want to go and keep the momentum going.
That is what it is like to start a new business in the fashion industry. Remember to do the correct things first and then keep on keeping on till you hit a momentum that drives you to the success you envision.
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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