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Posts Tagged ‘Sales Tools’

A friend pointed me to this website, and upon checking it out, it looks like a killer opportunity for emerging talent. FadMashion is a website connecting emerging fashion designers with global retailers, fashion enthusiasts, and global media. Designers can create a profile and portfolio, get exposure for their fashion product, and get feedback on and grow their brand. The creators of FadMashion promise a better user experience than other fashion networking sites. If you’re an indie fashion designer and registered on FadMashion, please let me know what you think. I’m interested in hearing about your experience.

I wish everyone in the FadMashion community the best of luck!

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A few months ago, the amazing Kathleen Fasanella from Fashion Incubator chimed in on a blog post of mine buy posting a comment with some great links from her website on how to better work the fashion trade shows. Here are links to those tips again, posted front and center for everyone to see.

1. How to promote yourself bef1ore a show
http://www.fashion-incubator.com/archive/how_to_promote_yourself_before_a_show/

2. How to promote your line at a tradeshow
http://www.fashion-incubator.com/archive/how_to_promote_your_line_at_a_trade_show/

3. What it’s like to exhibit at MAGIC
http://www.fashion-incubator.com/archive/what_its_like_to_exhibit_at_magic/

Tip from Kathleen:

“One last take away, I CANNOT stress this enough:
Make sure your booth number is on EVERY SINGLE piece of material in your booth. EVERYTHING, down to press releases, press reprints you give away, line sheets, order forms, business cards, swag, whatever. If that means you have to order little stickers to plaster on everything, so be it. Seriously.”

And lastly, I found this great interview with the folks who put on MAGIC on Fashion Biz Inc’s website. It also has some great advice on how to work the shows. It’s called “Get the most out of MAGIC!”

http://fashionbizinc.org/blog/selling-at-a-trade-show/

Good luck at market everyone!

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My latest article for Nolcha.com contains advice on how emerging fashion designers can impress retailers when going to market for the first time. All info was gleaned from interviews with successful boutique owners. Insider info, just for you. Here’s a quick excerpt and a link to the full article:

As an emerging fashion label launching in the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, you are undoubtedly making every possible effort to impress buyers at market and gain a competitive advantage. Chances are, you’ve made a considerable investment in all aspects of your business, from samples and production, to branding, marketing, PR, and sales efforts.

But because of the recent economic down-turn, retail buyers are scrutinizing new labels more closely, and some are favoring tried and true brands over new ones, for fear that new ones may not be as “buttoned-up” and therefore a financial risk. With tradeshow season upon us, how can you show retailers that your label is a good investment? Show them that you’re pulled together and super committed to helping them sell your line. Here’s how….

Read the full article here.

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On July 19, I will be conducting a Coffee Chat through CRAVEbusiness along with fellow superstar consultant Juliet Sander. It will be an informative, informal, and entertaining session where we discuss the ins and outs of launching a successful biz in the retail, fashion, and beauty industries, and what to expect in your business, over coffee. Here’s the official event description and a link to sign up. Hope to see you on July 19 in Seattle!

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This Coffee Chat is for fashion, beauty, lifestyle and retail business owners (or those who want to be) and will give you a snapshot of what to expect for your first 0-10 years in business, how to get off the ground, and how to use branding, marketing, and social media to your advantage. We’ll also focus on your own individual business challenges and will brainstorm helpful ideas to keep your business growing.

Speakers: Giannina Granata Silverman and Juliet Sander
Topic: Make it happen – Strategies for Launching and Growing a Fabulous Fashion, Beauty, Lifestyle or Retail Business
When: Sunday, July 19th, 2pm-4pm
Where: Pilates on 10th, 2351 10th Ave E Seattle, WA 98102
Price: $25 per person

Click here to sign up.

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Surely you’ve heard of Rodarte, the young and wildly successful label by Laura and Kate Mulleavy. Apparently, what got them noticed was their first lookbook, a gorgeous handcrafted piece using paper dolls, which they sent to editors and got immediate attention at WWD and Vogue, giving the young and insanely talented designers a rocket boost into superstardom. To read more about it, go here.

Your lesson here. An amazing lookbook can help you get noticed by the people that count. When you are ready to make your lookbook, think creatively. Use unusual materials. Send it in a gorgeous package. How can you stand out from a pile of junk on editors’ desks? I am sure you’ve got the creative chops to handle it.

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Another reader has written in with a question, which I will reply here for everyone’s benefit:

From Shannon:

Hi Giannina,
I was wondering if you ever covered the topic of how to approach the buyer at a boutique? I have a new product (it falls under the Food & Beverage category I guess) and I am just now starting to work on getting the product into stores. I would love to know if there is a protocol on how to go about doing this – without going to a trade/gift show. Any advice? Or any suggestions of articles/blogs/posts that address this question? Thanks for your time. I love the blog and can’t wait to read more of it!!

Hi Shannon, I have covered this a little before but will address the topic again. I have a client with similar situation to yours, she could not afford trade shows or gift shows, yet by simply pounding the pavement locally, has managed to gain entry into major stores here in Seattle. It is completely acceptable to approach local boutiques directly.

However, emails didn’t seem to work, as they got lost in the shuffle, but what did work was calling and asking for the buyer and getting an appointment. Once at the appointment, being very organized and professional is helpful. Of course, it really helped my client that her brand image was in order ( I designed all of her packaging) as it really, really helped sell the product. What also helped was having some sort of professionally designed literature (which I created for her) accompanying her product that would explain it to the customer, and help the product sell. This really clinched the deal, as it made her look like she was thinking ahead about how to sell the product, which store owners love.

I hope you find this info helpful. Good luck!

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