Ultimate Guide To Starting Your Own Clothing Line
Starting your own clothing line can be challenging but extremely rewarding. For me, the reward came with seeing my friends, family as well as total strangers wearing clothing featuring designs that I drew up myself. In my experience, the challenge is getting your brand off the ground and putting in the preliminary hard yards to reap the rewards later. Below I have compiled some killer tips and things to keep in mind when planning the launch of your new-to-the-world clothing line.
Do Your Homework
Before you put T-shirt to printer, it is important to familiarize yourself with the clothing industry. Keeping your ear to the ground about trends, exploring clothing blogs and social media to identify what influencers (cool people) are wearing and even just being aware of what people are wearing around you, can give you great insight into the industry.
When you have a firm understanding of what is going on in the world of fashion it is important to establish how your business will run. This involves picking materials and suppliers that will suit your operation and match the type of person you want wearing your products. Picking a target market for your clothing line is super important; you should have a picture in your head of the exact kind of person that will wear your clothes. You need to ask yourself questions like, “what are their interests? Where do they mostly shop on or offline? How old are they? What is their life stage?” – the list goes on and on, but you get the idea. Knowing this will also give you a good basis on how to price your product. This brings me to my next tip; establish how much you will make per shirt after costs.
Know Your Competition, Then Differentiate
“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.” Okay so I slightly adapted this quote from Sun Tzu’s legendary book The Art of War, but the principle here is the same. If you get to know your competition and find out as much as you possibly can about every aspect of their business, you’re giving yourself an edge. Once you have your competition figured out, you need to think about what you can do better than them. Knowing what your target market values will help you to do this as well; what does your target value? Do they appreciate higher quality? Cheaper price? Sustainable fabric? Whatever it may be it is important to offer something either unique or better than what the competition has on offer.
Come Up With A Promotional Strategy
You don’t need to break the bank to have a killer promotional plan. Your promotional plan will, of course, depend on your target market. For the sake of this post let’s say we are targeting our brand towards 17-25 year olds. We know this segment are part of a generation that are heavy internet users, they are avid blog readers and social media enthusiasts. This would be your primary channel when starting out because it is affordable and will give you a good amount of reach. You can post about your products, or even just areas of interest that your target market has. This helps build rapport with them so they recognize your brand and consider you when they want to buy clothing. This will differ based on your own target, establishing how they communicate and gather information will put you on the right track to raking in those sales.
Don’t Quit If You Aren’t a Baller After 2 Weeks
Starting a clothing brand isn’t a get-rich-quick scheme, it’s going to take some time and effort to get going and start seeing some financial gain from all your hard work. The key here is not to get discouraged and see it through. You should be continually analyzing and adapting to find what works, and if something isn’t working- change it. Listening to your customers is a big part of this. Find out what aspects of your product they like and then work on emphasizing these aspects in your product and promotional strategy. The hardest part is the first 6 months but once you pass that initial barrier you should start to feel like you’ve got it all a little more figured out.
Have Fun And Be Passionate
Having a blast and having a fiery passion about your brand and its values will put you on a path to success. Having a strong belief in your brand will get you through those tough times, as will having fun with what you are doing. This is something you have chosen to do, its yours so make sure you have fun with it every day.
Seek Likeminded People Who Can Help
At Ultria we have been in the business a long time, odds are if you can think it we can make it. We have helped many budding clothing brands over the years, giving them advice and a little know how on how they can make a bang and a buck in the clothing industry. This blog will continue to provide support and tips to those clothing entrepreneurs out there but if you want a more personal touch contact our team for a chat about utilising our Start Your Own Brand service to make life 10x easier. We take care of all the small stuff so you can focus on what you’re best at.