Another very interesting day. I had a conversation with a woman who mentors young fashion designers. It struck me how many misconceptions there are about online businesses.
A lot of people think they understand how things operate online... very few do. It becomes very obvious very quickly when people speak about the online fashion business, but aren't really involved with it. You have no idea how many times I have been lectured on 'the realities of online fashion' by people who have never even subscribed to a blog!
Here's a few of my (least) favourites:
Misconception #1: The internet is where you sell if you're products aren't quite up to industry standard
This is based on the idea that the internet is where you test your products to see if they're good enough for the 'real' fashion world. Is it not possible that someone would make a conscious choice to focus on the web because it allows you to create a better business model? Ummm... yes.
Misconceptions #2: The most important piece of internet marketing is getting your site featured high on Google searches
Google schmoogle. Do you know how many people get to my blog doing searches on terms such as 'japanese bikini girls', 'hot girls wearing pantyhose' or 'boys wearing tights'? Quite a few. Needless to say, most of them don't become regular customers. Google is only helpful if you've already done the marketing, it's not a marketing tool in itself.
Misconception #3: It's important to get your gear featured on blogs. You don't have to know too much about those blogs (much less subscribe!), just send them a generic email and they'll feature you!
Anytime I get a generic email addressed to 'Hi,' I just delete it. Sending out generic emails to blogs you don't subscribe to is the quickest way to make a blogger feel like a prostitute. However, when people email me because they have been following the blog and have a genuine interest - I'm totally there.
Misconception #4: Internet stores don't sell a lot.
Well, mine does.
Misconception #5 People won't buy from internet stores because they like try things on
True for some people, not for all. Especially with stretch garments, you'll be amazed with what you can get away with. I always tell people who are concerned about sizing to put it on (even if it's a squeeze) and wear it out for a couple of hours. You'll probably forget you're even wearing them. Except for the fact that people will keep commenting on them...