The 8 Step Plan To Start Your Fashion Label
Many people have a dream of one day owning a fashion label. Starting such a label can be a rewarding experience especially for an ambitious and creative entrepreneur with a vision. Many popular fashion brands are born out of passion and a consumer need for a product. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need to attend a fashion design school to start your fashion label, sheer hard work, an airtight plan and a working budget will do the trick.
A clothing brand needs more than just an amazing concept and some exquisite designs. The process requires one to start-up and run a small small business. The entrepreneur is involved in the different manufacturing processes such as sourcing, production and retailing of your line. This requires a fair amount of effort, energy, time, drive and financial investment. Below is a detailed 8-step plan on how one can start their fashion label:
IDENTIFY YOUR NICHE
Starting a clothing line is a very personal and involved journey. Whatever your inspiration, identifying your niche is of paramount importance. The fashion market is somewhat saturated hence blindly trying to target large groups will only result in loss. Manufacturing a product that the market doesn’t need, will not create a lasting business. You simply cannot create a demand that is not already there in the market.
DECIDE ON THE PRODUCTS YOU WANT TO SELL
The fashion world presents a lot of choices for an entrepreneur to choose from. Before you embark on the journey, you need to have a good idea of the particular products you want to create and sell. It may be the opportune time to design a product that represents your personal style and personality.
DIFFERENTIATE YOUR BRAND
The clothing industry is a very competitive space. To effectively compete, you need to have a point of differentiation that sets you apart from the rest. People are known to buy from brands whose story they can relate to. Fendi, for instance, is a brand born from three generations of women who built a fashion empire based on craftsmanship, aesthetics and unrivalled sense of detail. This story creates a connection with consumers than can allow the brand to demand a higher price point with great style and fit
BUILD YOUR BUSINESS PLAN
The fashion industry is tricky to predict. Whether you are starting a small business or aiming at having a huge empire, a business plan is an essential tool to help guide your decisions. A business plan is a roadmap of your business that offers some clarity to all the aspects of your business. Make sure your plan is practical and flexible. In business, there are no guarantees, you just need to be open to all the challenges.
HIRE THE RIGHT TEAM
It’s a known fact that your business is only as good as your employees. The right team will help your business run and grow. Employees who are invested in your business will be open to growing their role as the business matures. From the designers, logistic crew, merchandisers, marketers, every employee represents a vital facet of your business. Having the wrong team will cost you more than just money.
TEST YOUR PRODUCTS
As with all businesses, an entrepreneur ought to test the products before committing to a full product run. This can be done through online platforms such as Facebook and Instagram marketplace as well as physical trading spaces. This will allow the entrepreneur to take notes and ask the consumers for their feedback on the product. Feedback is a way to ascertain the product reception and a way to fast-track growth. The test stage never quite ends as you’ll constantly be adding new products to your line.
MARKET YOUR PRODUCTS
After testing your products, it’s time to order your first full production run. At this day and age, it’s important to create an online clothing store where you can advertise, organise deals and sales to promote sales. Have proper shipment procedures in place to ensure a seamless delivery of products to your consumers. Put a lot of effort on after-sale services to deal with possible returns and customer-related issues.
SCALE-UP AND EXPAND
Your clothing business is launched and you have made your first profit. Scaling is the next obvious step in mind for any ambitious business owner. It’s important to take ample time to reflect on the growth of your business and focus on the plans of new products or larger orders. Don’t be too quick to scale up, sometimes it pays to keep things as they are for a couple of seasons before taking a plunge into expansion.