Recently I made a video on Fashion Marketing, in which talked about the 5 biggest mistakes I see brands making when it comes to promoting their fashion business. If you want to watch the video, you can see it here. I know some people still prefer the blog post format though, so below is a transcript from the video;
This is the very first episode in a new series that I'm recording all about fashion marketing and how to get customers to your fashion business. In this first episode, I'm going to be talking about five mistakes that I often see brands making when it comes to promoting their small fashion business. So, let's run through these five mistakes and see how we can avoid making the same mistakes ourselves.
The first mistake that I see people making is that they try to sell to everyone. And the problem with this is it does become a case of trying and failing. If you're trying to sell to everyone, you'll end up selling to no one.
I do sort of get the logic here, people assume that most people will want to buy clothes at some point. So people think that by promoting their products with everyone in mind, chances are someone somewhere is going to buy eventually. Actually though, you end up having the opposite effect because if you think about it, if you're promoting loads of different things people aren't going to want to follow you because they just don't know what to expect from you. If you're promoting something a visitor loves one day and then the next day it's something that they hate, the inconsistency will become annoying for them and in the end they just won't bother following along anymore.
Instead, it's much better to be super specific. So, rather than trying to sell to everyone, try and really hone in on who your ideal customer is and promote your brand by including things that are really important to them specifically. Sure, this is going to put people off who aren't a good fit for your brand, but don't see that as a bad thing. If they're not a good fit for your brand, they're not going to buy from you anyway. By being really specific, you can build a connection with potential customers, build a brand that they're going to love and not only will that help you to attract them as a customer in the first place, it'll help them to keep loyal and keep coming back to you as well.
The second thing that I see people doing is relying too much on social media. And I have a quote here from a recent Forbes report, which talks about how Instagram convert only 3.1% of people into buyers. That means the other almost 97% of people aren't going to buy from you if they see you on Instagram. And that's just one particular quote from Forbes and it's something that I hear all the time and not just for Instagram. In general with social media, the conversion rate isn't that great on its own. Typically people need to see your brand multiple times before they go from the initial time they saw you and found out about you, to become a customer.
So unfortunately, marketing isn't as simple as just posting a few pretty pictures to Instagram. Customers need to keep seeing your brand, which means that you need to have an entire strategy in place to increase the chances of a potential customer actually transitioning into a buyer. So instead, rather than just focusing all of our attention on social media, we want to create something that I personally call a sales journey. You've probably heard of something similar, maybe a sales funnel, a marketing funnel.
There's different terminology for it, but I like to use the word sales journey and that's a strategy that I use and use with my customers too. Basically, it's a process to make sure that we have these different touch points where the customer can come into contact with our brand, which helps use as brands create trust. Potential customers can start to engage with our brand more. Perhaps they started off seeing us on social media and then went to our blog, signed up for our email list and then eventually went on to became a loyal customer. And that's so much better than just having someone who double taps on Instagram, but leaves it at that. You really need to have a whole strategy in place rather than just posting to social media.
The third mistake that I want to talk to you about is not building an email list. Email marketing is huge right now and although I'll admit in recent years, it's become a little more complicated, it’s still a great way of reaching your audience. If you're one of those people who hasn't done this, I strongly suggest that you get onto it, because email marketing is one of the few promotional methods where you have control. It’s not like Facebook or Google or anything else where there's an algorithm that you have to contend with and only a certain number of people are going to what you post. You control whether or not people receive an email from you, for the most part. You are the one who has the ability to get them to open it by using catchy subject headings. And most people check their email at least multiple times a week, sometimes multiple times a day, so they're going to have multiple opportunities to see your message. If they're on, say Facebook, they won’t see all of your posts due to the algorithm, whereas with email, there's a much higher chance that they're going to see that message from you.
So instead of not having an email list, you need to focus on growing your email list today! Even if you don't have a business yet, you need to start working on this because you don't want to launch your business and then not have anyone to sell it to. An email list is really one of the first things that you need to do for your business. So, if you haven't started already, make this the next thing on your to do list! Email marketing has a much better conversion rates than a lot of other marketing methods. And for the most part, as we said, you're in a lot more control than you are with another platform.
The fourth mistake is that people talk about themselves too much. It's all me, me, me, and it really should be about the customer rather than your self promotion. People don't want to hear about you all the time. They want to know what's in it for them, so rather than constantly promoting, instead you want to help your customers. Try to change your mindset and think of marketing in a way of ‘how can I help my customer today’ rather than ‘what can I sell them today’? That mindset shift and the way that you come across your customers can have a huge impact on your performance.
The majority of your content should be helpful to the customer rather than self promoting all the time. Now that's not to say that you can't include your products, obviously you want to still be referencing your products and talking about them, but don't do it in such an obvious way. People will get fed up of receiving promotional messages and will eventually unfollow, or zone out. Whereas if you give your audience something that genuinely solves a problem for them, then they're going to want to keep interacting with your brand, keep going to your website, keep reading your blog, whatever it might be. I know that it's a little bit of a hard concept sometimes for people to understand. So if we take an activewear brand as an example; one of my clients has an activewear brand and on his blog he writes about different workouts that you can do, different ways of warming up, smoothie recipes to improve your workout and anything he feels his audience will find useful. So, people go to him because they want to know what the new smoothie for that weekend, or want know what the latest technique is for their warmup. So because this guy is helping his customers, it means that they keep going back because they got helpful information from him. But of course, any photography that's in those posts, any products that are referenced, are all his products. So even though he's still marketing and still promoting, it's not an obvious ‘buy this now’ kind of way. It's a lot more subtle and it means that his content gets a lot more engagement from customers because they're getting something useful out of it.
The final mistake to share with you today is I see a lot of people who aren't automating any of their marketing. Without systems in place to automate a lot of this process, it can really become a full time job. And, I know a lot of you guys are small or your startup and budgets are tight. You don't have the budget to hire a full time marketing employee to work for you. So, it's super important to get processes set up so that you're not spending all of your time marketing. Instead of doing everything manually, you want to make sure that you're using scheduling tools, automation software, and at the very least bulking tasks together, like photography for instance, so that you can save a lot of time and make sure that your actually able to work on your product, your customer service and other things, rather than marketing constantly. It will also really help you to be more consistent with your marketing, because you can schedule, for example, Instagram posts to go live every day, so you don't have to be sat there waiting to post, or remember to do it.
This is the exact strategy I use; I have content that I upload in bulk and then it just goes out on schedule. I don't have to be thinking about marketing every day, which especially good because you do want your own time at the weekends, rather than thinking about marketing 24/7.
I hope these tips have been helpful and given you a lot to think about. If you want to learn more on this topic, there's a couple of options for you. First off, you can check the blog here, which has got more free articles and content.
There’s also the Attract Loyal Customers Course, which is my latest program. It's a short course, about four hours long, and we go into a lot of depth on the topics that we've just discussed and other strategies for attracting customers, keeping them coming back to your website and converting them into buyers. If you're interested learning more about the course, you can see all the details by clicking here.
I’m always am open to suggestions for new videos and new content, so by all means, leave me a message and I'll be sure to get back to you….
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