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What do Retailers Need from Style Designers?

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The StartUp FASHION group attended the WWDMAGIC Tradeshow in Las Vegas to take a look at among the finest rising designers and hear to numerous audio system share their information of the business.

One matter that caught our consideration was what retailers need from designers. We have been thrilled to get knowledgeable suggestions and actionable recommendation from Mercedes Gonzalez, Director of World Buying Group and Eric Jennings, Vice President and Style Director of Menswear, House and Presents at Saks Fifth Avenue. Merely put, these are some methods to get in good with a purchaser:

Do your homework

The very first thing to do when pitching a retailer is to do your homework and perceive the shop. After we say retailer, we not solely imply the model however the bodily location as a Saks Fifth Avenue in Las Vegas might be not shopping for a wind resistant wool parka for the Winter!

A store-visit is a should every season as a result of the dynamics contained in the retailer are continually altering. Whether or not it’s a ground set, window show, or how manufacturers are divided all through the shop, it is best to know all of this together with the place you see your assortment inside the shop. Be sure you perceive what labels they carry, the manufacturers you need to “hold with” and the worth factors every division hits.

Understanding pricing is so essential as a result of even should you’re product is a match aesthetically, your product has to suit inside the retailer’s pricing construction so it’s going to promote!  Regardless of how robust you suppose your product is, a retailer usually gained’t carry an outlier like a $700 t-shirt when the typical value is $65. Sure, this does occur and is a real story we heard within the presentation. Yikes!

This analysis will prep you for conversations with patrons and likewise impress them. Plus, it confirms that you’re actually concerned with their retailer and it may well additionally assist you put together your pitch.

Craft a succinct and informative pitch

Earlier than you strategy a retailer, ask your self whether or not your model fills a void when it comes to type and value level. Additionally be sure to are emailing or calling the proper purchaser. Do not forget that totally different patrons cowl particular departments, areas, and that retail and on-line shops act as separate divisions too.

When writing your pitch, take into consideration including these parts:

Be sure you present context and the aim in your electronic mail.  One thing like, “We met at WWDMAGIC in August and I want to present you my line. It’s a combination between Alice & Olivia and Rebecca Taylor.” This helps floor them and set up a reference level.

You’ll additionally need to inform them what you want to do. For instance, “Right here’s my Spring 12 assortment, when can we make an appointment to evaluation it?”

And keep in mind to verify they’re shopping for for that season!  So Essential!  For instance, patrons begin collections for Spring the Spring via Fall the prior yr!

Except for holding your pitch easy and clear, be sure that it’s accessible. The very first thing to test is whether or not your pitch could be learn on a cellular gadget. Whether or not it’s a Phrase doc, PDF, or a photograph, it must be suitable for a number of platforms. Additionally take into consideration how you’re sending your picture. Is it embedded or hooked up, and please, dimension it down so it opens shortly as you don’t need to be chargeable for making a purchaser’s cellphone freeze.

Are you able to help your retailer?

A retailer can be extra receptive when you’ll be able to work with them. They want your help as a lot as you want them to hold your product.  So what does this imply?

  • Can you give gross sales associates a coaching handbook or seminar so that they perceive your line, finally in hopes of gross sales?
  • Are you able to host a trunk present to assist promote the road and can you put it up for sale prior so individuals come into the shop?
  • Will you or a rep be capable of chat with the shop to grasp gross sales to see what’s working or not and how one can make it higher?

These are all essential methods you’ll be able to develop a relationship with a retailer and are the conversations you’ll be able to have early on with a purchaser to indicate that you’re vested in making the partnership work.

In a nutshell, respect for a purchaser’s time and retailer together with a strong assortment and powerful pitch is your ticket to reaching and hopefully working with a retailer in your listing.


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