12 Secrets From Fashion Industry Leaders on Branding
Competition in the fashion industry is fierce. You need to do everything in your power to stand out from the crowd. This involves putting together a carefully constructed branding plan so you can set yourself apart.
But, what does fashion branding truly mean? And, how can you grow a fashion brand? Continue reading to discover the answers to these questions and find out more about the best fashion branding secrets from those in the know.
Fashion industry market size and important stats
In 2021, the global apparel market was calculated at somewhere in the region of $1.55 trillion. By the time we reach 2026, it’s expected to reach around $2 trillion.
According to Euromonitor International, a market research provider, the biggest retail markets across the globe are China, the United States, the United Kingdom, Japan, and Germany. Statista has also confirmed that the US and China play a huge role in the international fashion trade.
What does fashion branding mean?
In the fashion sector, your brand is your company’s identity. It’s not a slogan or a logo. It’s everything to do with how your business’s public persona.
Branding, therefore, describes how you establish the image of your business in the eyes of possible customers. Elements like blog content, website design, logo, brand colors, and product names all help to create a coherent fashion brand.
Some great fashion branding examples include Nike’s Better for It, Hermès’ House of Scarves, H&M’s Close the Loop, and Jigsaw’s Love Immigration campaigns.
What is the importance of branding?
Now that we’ve defined branding, we need to ask; what is the purpose of a fashion brand? Answering this question will enable you to truly hone in on the importance of branding in the fashion industry.
The reason a brand exists is to establish trust with your clients and generate loyalty. If you have a strong brand, buyers will remember you. Your business will have its own identity, which will set it apart from the competition.
- Branding provides your business value
- Branding helps you to connect with your customers emotionally
- Having a brand enables you to stay focused and create clarity
- Your brand represents you and your promise to your consumer
- Customers know what to expect when you have a strong brand
- A strong brand generates referrals
- Your brand gives your staff direction and motivation
- Ultimately, your brand sets you apart from the competition.
Fashion branding secrets from fashion industry leaders
Who are the leaders in the fashion industry? This includes everyone from Amancio Ortega Gaona, who pioneered the fast fashion business model at Zara, to Canadian footwear mogul Aldo Bensadoum.
Below, we’ll share some fashion branding secrets from other leaders in the industry.
- “If a consumer relates to the brand, it creates a connection, and the wearer feels as though the brand is an extension of themselves.” - Gail McInnes, PR manager at Believeco
- “Trying to be everything to everyone is a recipe for disaster unless your brand has many extensions. Know who your buyer is and play to the elements of pop culture that appeal to them. This takes a fair amount of market research and marketing discipline, and does not happen overnight.” - Carolyn Delacorte, founder, Boxwood Co
- “Fashion brands should consider consulting with a branding agency right in the beginning. This allows the brand to gain insights into the best strategy for the shopping experience, merchandising, positioning, voice and tone, and visual balance between the graphic identity and the product.” - Helen Rice, creative director and co-founder of FUZZCO, Serious Buildings, and Pretend Store
- “You don’t need to place expensive print or television ads to market your clothing line. Collaborating with influencers and building a community on social media can be very effective in building business.” - Sara Koonar, president of Platform Media + Management
- “My advice to new brands is to do market research and see who your competitors are. It is one of the most competitive markets.” - Nick Ede, CEO of EastofEden London
- “A great example of a brand that understands social media is Calvin Klein. The brand enlists the ‘it’ models, celebrities, and influencers of the moment to promote its brand in a simple yet fresh way.” - Madelyn Chung, founder and editor-in-chief of Represent Asian Project
- “Take your time! Creatives and entrepreneurs often rush themselves because we all now operate at such a fast pace.” - Odessa Paloma Parker, fashion writer and art editor
- “Fashion branding needs to be about the emotional experience for your target audience. Exceptional branding provides a sense of comfort and acceptance, yet inspiration to keep your clients coming back for more each season.” - Alex O’Byrne, director of WeMakeWebsites
- “Social media plays a big part in branding, and it’s also the most inexpensive way to build a brand. You can reach a big demographic and audience virtually free.” - Chris Ngo, owner of The Leverage Showroom
- “You can’t outsource your voice. It’s your heart and soul, it’s your story. It’s important to ask yourself, as a label, ‘What do I have that big corporations don’t?’ Where do we win naturally, and where will they try to fake it and fall short? This is where you have to go loud.” - Leanne Mai-ly Hilgart, sustainable fashion expert
- “I would suggest finding a core group of friends, or a team of people who have skills that are beneficial to you. Grow and learn with each other.” - Andrew Coimbra, women’s designer at Mackage
- “Find your niche and define in very few words what makes your brand distinctive. If something doesn’t fit those original three words—even though you might like it—scrap it. Establish the core message, nail it, then expand.” - Joey Ng, CMO at Yami
How to create a fashion branding strategy?
Now that we’ve revealed some top branding secrets, let’s look at how to create a marketing strategy for a fashion brand. Here are some tips on how to grow a fashion brand:
- Understand your demographic and niche - Not all fashion businesses are going to be targeting the same audience. You need to understand yours. Don’t simply try to please everyone. Instead, have a clear demographic, and target this demographic with your product offerings and marketing.
- Partner with influencers and fashion bloggers - The influencer market is growing all of the time. Carefully partnering with an influencer who’s the right fit for your fashion brand will help you to reach more people while solidifying your identity in the marketplace.
- Create lookbooks and style guides - A lookbook or style guide shows your viewers how to wear your products and combine them in different ways. This instills confidence some customers may need before purchasing.
- Use promotions to create FOMO - FOMO stands for the fear of missing out. By installing this fear, customers feel like they need to purchase now or they risk missing out on the offer altogether.
- Concentrate on your best sellers - Fashion brands can be tempted to hop onto trends to compete and stay relevant. However, it’s always best to hedge your bets on your bestsellers.
Time to leverage these fashion branding secrets for yourself
So there you have it: some of the best fashion branding secrets. The only thing left to do now is to leverage them yourself. Implement the tips and advice we have mentioned above and watch your brand soar.
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