How to have winning fashion startups
Trends, tips and things to do to make a fashion start up working properly
It’s a particularly interesting moment for the startup ecosystem. Even Mario Moroni, who dedicated to the world of startups one of the most enlightening books “Start up shit“, in a recent live show has shown a certain optimism: “I think that the value of emotions in starting over is unparalleled (…) as far as I’m concerned the emotion is also about having a fixed appointment, a real journey. I don’t know if you feel the same emotion for this kind of projects, which are distinguished by having a value in time”.
WWG has same opinion. Creating a startup today means: making a concrete commitment, starting a path that is not simple, being well aware of working on something that undeniably has value and always start over. The approach is precisely that of Agile culture that we could summarize with the sentence “act to fail as quickly as you can”. For this list of tips we start by saying that…
1. Fashion startups must be Agile
In fashion, whose market is rather saturated, it is necessary to reflect with a certain punctuality on what has just been completed. We must work on the list of things to do, as we will see later, but we must be focused right away on those perfectible. Once you have chosen the roles within your working group, identified the pilot projects (maybe divided into sprints), decided the metrics, the Kpis, the success criteria surely there will be to face even the failure. Sooner or later it will come. And then again.
“Startup means making a concrete commitment, starting a path that is not simple, being aware of working on something that undeniably has value and always start over.
Startups have in their DNA the ability to adapt to change and often this spirit of adaptation becomes their driving force. WWG supports new fashion start-ups and encourages the meeting with those companies that choose open innovation strategies (for example, external consulting, hackathons, POC and collaboration with startups). Those who seize the opportunities given by the market in the most Agile way and manage to solve the thousand emerging problems (for customers, for organizations and for everyone!), will play an important role.
Registration n special section of innovative startups set up online
Agile companies such as startups as well as having helped to overcome some really dramatic stages of lockdown are an important resource and an asset of the entrepreneurial world to support and encourage.
However, as government maneuvers are increasingly trying to help innovative startups, it is clear that fiscal incentives, corporate law measures, those supporting liquidity and investment will not be enough. We hope this article will help you. When you have to make more or less demanding decisions, do it in an Agile way, both in starting and in growth process of your startup.
2. As soon as you can think of an MVP
To attract funding you will often show the idea work in progress before it is really finished. It will not be easy to provide evidence of the potential of your brand, perhaps to other fashion companies, without having in mind the overall picture. It happens regularly to software development companies. It’s the everyday life of WWG. What happens if a customer wants to take a look at a software before deciding whether to buy the final product? Software prototyping involves the creation of a software model or, in some cases, incomplete versions of the software program being developed.
Prototyping is not just a methodology, but rather an approach to test particular features. Whether you’re focusing on a new platform, never-before-seen materials, or a great word of mouth on social media, try to reduce the inherent risk by splitting a project into smaller segments. This more easily guarantees changes, second thoughts, trials and errors during the growth process.
In recent years the most important fashion startups have focused their efforts on key moments of user experience, such as the customization of models, the basic steps of the customer journey, the delivery of products and on production stages as tissue procurement.
“To attract funding you will often show your idea work in progress before it is really finished”
Let’s Focus on a single aspect related to the world of clothing or accessories production. After validating an idea, in the moment you understand precisely if potential customers feel a certain need and are willing to pay for the solution you want to propose, you will also need to validate your solution.
In this last phase and in that characterized by the choice of the 4 P:
You will need as much data as possible to make strategic decisions and assessments supported by your analyses.
3. Involve your client immediately
The start-up clothing or in general those in fashion area are finding in the software development companies suitable interlocutors to validate ideas and solutions. Computer science today is able to create systems that really know customers, analyze markets and understand precisely the habits of smaller niches.
Design of service and products have a fundamental role to intercept the tastes of customers. It is above all because the development translate what has been said so far into measurable, viewable and interpretable data.
Basically the fashion industry does not grant many entry points into the market. There is no value niche of immediate success. Actually, there’s not even a great sense of security. In the fashion world it is often said that if you do not exceed three seasons you definitely leave the market.
The failure rate is real. The chances of losing everything, even if you have more years of experience, are very high. And yet, what Reed Hastings writes in the book “The only rule is that there are no rules” about the Netflix story is a great comfort. Yes, Netflix, a 2000 start-up “through which people could receive Dvds ordered on a website in the mail”. Netflix, a start-up company that will be trading on the stock market within 4 years. Netflix itself, a start-up that today bill more than 20 billion dollars a year.
The growth of a fashion start-up is also possible at a time of great change. Innovative startups love difficulties. They thrive in moments of transition. Just think that by 30 June 2020 there are 3,167 innovative startups launched thanks to the mode of digital constitution after the most trying period of the last 50 years. Over 170 of the total expressly committed to dealing with the emergency (source: Startup Intelligence Observatories)
One of the ways to not burn time and money, however, is to focus on customization. I mean, you have to think about the characteristics of your community first and, in detail, the identity card of every single one of your clients. Understanding its problems and how it perceives the fashion trends of the moment is fundamental.
“The start-ups of the fashion sector are finding in software development companies the right interlocutors to validate ideas and solutions”.
At the moment, the largest clothing manufacturers, in addition to looking carefully at all the latest news of fashion or clothing startups, are investing on these aspects to improve their business (sometimes even upset it without blinking an eye) by:
- Ensuring quality of fabrics,
- Using natural and eco-sustainable fibers,
- Producing smart clothes,
- Offering tailors services at home,Offer clothes rental services,Private sales,Development of accessories,
- Investing in crafts,
- Respecting small producers,
- Building communities (trend to inclusivity. respect for diversity, general democratization of fashion),
- Offering customized products,
- Surpassing the model of the collections divided into seasons
4. Use state-of-the-art inventory management software
It is reasonable to efficiently manage your products. It is essential to know how to handle all the data related to inventory with particular reference to:
- Manage sales orders (SO) and production orders (MO);
- Automatically schedule the production;
- Manage multiple SKUs and different base lists (BOM).
The focus is on all the connectors of your information systems: that guarantee a future-proof data collection.
WWG provides custom tools for fashion startups, solutions that include tools to start your business and resize your production at any time.
Intelligent manufacturing software can integrate with e-commerce platforms and programs used for accounting to centralize the entire production process on a dashboard. This way you can open multiple sales channels, perfect for direct sales, to different subgroups of users.
- The advantages of a software tool specifically designed for you?
- Manage your specific inventory in real time
- No more stockouts
- No more missed deadlines
5. Let’s use state-of-the-art technologies
Among the most promising applications for fashion start-ups are certainly those that experiment blockchain technologies. Some fashion startups exploit them for supply chain, inventory management and management of counterfeit problems. Blockchain applications combined with RFID and other IoT technologies can instantly track shipments of raw materials and follow the finished product through the entire distribution chain until it ends up in consumer’s hands
The blockchain start-ups in the fashion industry that experiment with this data management, have an unalterable proof of creation, which is very useful in case of dispute. Trademark owners who license their intellectual property can use blockchain technology to check the status of sales and royalty payments.
Fashion technology startups will be noted thanks to their innovation, performance and impact on fashion. Here’s what they’ll do:
- Omnichannel Customer Experience
- 5G & Beyond
- Artificial Intelligence
- Big Data & Business Analytics
- Blockchain & Distributed Ledger
- Cloud Transformation
- Cybersecurity & Data Protection
- Digital B2b
- eCommerce B2c
- Innovative Payments
- Internet of Things
- Mobile B2c Strategy
Technology can make our lives easier and, although more and more people enjoy its advantages, it is good to remember that technology is never available without a price. The cost of professionals specialized in the digital field who very often manage to apply, interpret, define, and realize truly innovative projects, including processes of digitalization and corporate reorganization, is often borne by new entrepreneurs. This is why startupper is rightly considered a hero of innovation.
6. Think ahead to all retail
The start-ups that deal with clothing will always boost the entire sector. However the central issue of how the largest fashion companies are facing the transition into online is related to how entrepreneurs perceive the moment. They think about the digital as a distribution channel to get their product out there a quite everywhere. That’s a huge mistake.
Digital technologies are redefining consumption, purchase and use of garments habits. The start-up clothing are today service providers of hi-tech. For this reason, the big fashion brands can be considered authentic yards of innovation in which the concept of store is re-invented, new forms of sales are assumed and new “formats” are thought to change the entire value chain represented by:
- Omnichannel models to integrate online and offline
If WWG will not help you to lay the foundations of a continuous improvement model, it is good to understand from the beginning who will support you in implementing innovative solutions. Among these it is right to pay particular attention to retail which should be as “mapped” as possible.
7. The choice of the team
And then there’s the final issue: you can’t do everything yourself! Although your slim framework reduces the risks of having a new product on the market, or an online store with its own mood, you have to choose who to trust. To whom to tell your idea, your success story, with whom to develop a culture of open innovation and who to entrust your business.
It may happen that the one you have in mind is really just a cheap idea to test with friends and family, on a small scale, a project that is really little more than a dream. It’s the opportunity to show those designs of the clothes completed in the free time or a way to circulate that brand kept for years in a drawer. Maybe you won’t have a full business plan for long time. It takes curiosity and a little madness to go all the way and see if these 7 tips really work. And what if your idea takes off?