It's a dream many have: Starting an apparel brand that becomes a beloved household name. Or at least brings in a load of money and allows you to spend your days creating while you pay others to take care of everything else.
But the reality is growing an apparel brand is hard. Parting ways with thousands of dollars to produce your products is, in fact, the easy part.
Often people are so in love with the products they are having produced, they assume everyone else will, too. And that simply by the act of placing those products onto their website, sales are guaranteed.
Unfortunately, nothing could be farther from the truth.
And now all the money is gone, and you are left with inventory you can't sell.
But don't despair. There are things that you can do before you ever spend a dollar creating your products that will set up your brand for success.
Here are five easy ways to save money before starting a clothing brand:
Know Your Why Your why is your pathway to your end goal. If you don’t know why you are building a brand and creating products that resonate with your brand, how can you convince anyone to buy them? Journaling is a mindful way to allow yourself to free write and let out all of your thoughts, ideas, hopes and dreams. Figure out why you want to go on this adventure. What’s your end goal?
Understand Who You Are Selling To Don't make products for yourself. Create a fictional customer persona (also known as an avatar) that goes deep into who your customer is. How much money they make, where they shop, what’s important to them, why they choose the clothing they wear, and what a day in their lives looks like. This will help you to figure out where they spend their time online and offline, how much they are willing to spend for your product and how that product will fit into their lives.
Make Products that Solve a Problem or Deliver a Benefit Customers want products that benefit them in some way. It can be the way it makes them feel, makes their lives easier, or helps audiences they are part of or that are important to them. If you are struggling to come up with that solution, look to your competitors in your market segment. Read customer reviews of their products. What do they love about the products and where is there room for improvement? This is where you start to find problems you can solve with your products.
Get Detailed About Your Product Before you talk to a manufacturer, you have to get clear on what you are talking about. Do you want to make a hoodie? Great! Whatelse can you share about that hoodie? What’s important? What differentiates it from other hoodies? Is it because it’s made in the U.S.? Because of the unique art you created that you are going to put on the hoodies? Do you have a different idea about how you want the pocket to look and extra pockets that can securely hold different items? Do you want it to be made of sustainable materials? How do you want it to fit? Pull together some inspiration images that you can share with your manufacturer and get detailed on your details so they can give you the most accurate estimate.
Understand All Your Costs Know that your pre-production and production costs are only part of the funds you will need to actually launch your product. Think about hang tags, packaging, your advertising budget and everything else that will go into creating the finished product you want your customers to receive along with the avenues you will take to raise awareness and reach your target audience. Then you can create a budget that will allow you to make good decisions about your products, how you present your products and how you sell your products.
Let us help you build your clothing brand in a strategic, meaningful way. Multiple options available for every budget. We are here for your brand's growth and success.