Tag Archives: branding

Diary of a Fashion Designer: 2017 and Beyond

Standard

Hello World! It’s been a longtime since we dished so this is just an intro to a series of 3 posts that will catch you up on what’s been going on in my world, and what to look forward to in the near future; like more video posts. 2016 has been the longest year EVER. So many twists and turns have made it memorable and full of so many lessons, not only in my journey to establish my brand, but also in my personal life.

In a nutshell, I gave birth to another baby girl, I’m still single, I had an extremely successful fashion show, launched new products: one of a kind leather handbags, sustainable active and swimwear, opened an additional online storefront, launched an unsuccessful KICKSTARTER campaign, gained some new writing clients, and much more.

I’m excited for the new year and what I have planned. People always claim, “This year is the year  for me, I’ll be successful, my careers going to take off, I’ll find love etc. etc.” But you know what, this time instead of making some vague claim about what’s going to occur, or how things are going to be, I’m going to focus on the steps I’ll be taking to get those results. 2017 will be all about action and what I;m going to call “proactivity.” At this point, I know what has not been working for me, and I’ve tallied all the casualties of my failures and put them to rest. However, I’m working hard to move on and NOT repeat the same mistakes. R.I.P to my past, and hello to my future…

Stay Tuned…….MUAH aaaaaaaaaand scene

10363615_10152624444215819_4348159745429295326_n

 

 

Diary Of A Fashion Designer: Retailing 2016 and Beyond Improve Your Profitability

Standard

p12glowingedgesgal2 copy  You love fashion, you love art, and you love the business. However, the bottom line is, you want to get paid. No matter how fashion forward and how awesome of a product you have to offer, if your sales are close to none you have to stop to figure out what you’re doing wrong. Where’s the hole in your strategy that needs to be addressed? What actions can you take to increase sales and visibility?

It happens to the best of them. You map everything out, bring it from concept to creation, get an online store, and BOOM you think you’ll start selling out off top. But whether it’s a brick and mortar storefront or the internet marketplace building your brand and making it profitable is not as easy as you think. But here’s 3 pieces of advice that will give you a strong starting point.

  1. Clearly Define, Understand, and Know Your Customer

Ask yourself who are you selling to? What type of person are they? What do they value? What drives them to buy? As we move into a future of more and more digital consumption, there are four main consumer tribes: Time Traders, New Eccentrics, Beliefists, and Co-Creators. Define which one, or which combination of tribes fits within your market. NOT knowing and understanding who your customer is, is detrimental to your business. Creating a product that addresses their needs, and solves their “problems” is your number one concern.

One thing all these tribes have in common is that they believe the future is now, but here’s a brief list of some elements that individually define them:

Time Traders: – have different realities of the future   -augmented    -establish communities and connections mostly online

                        -bored of technology   -bored of wearable technology

                        -take inspiration from African Utopian Architecture eg. Masai tribe   -believe in everyday opulence( luxury)

                        -takes inspiration from timeless art   recreating the future   -anticipation VS adaptation   -healthy lifestyle

New Eccentrics: -playful   -inspiration in everyday things   -constant connectiveness (mobile and digital)

                          -uses everyday items to convey a message   -speed of connectivity moves people to unplug 

                          -offbeat attitudes   -questions beauty standards   -immersive entertainment   -fun   -embracing imperfections

Beliefists: -fear of having to forgo religion   -engage people to slow down and reflect   -self reflection  -non-denominal

                -start up religions (celebrrties/Beyism/Yeezus)   -feeling of emptiness   -reconnect w/nature  

                -collaboration of mind, body, and code/emotional wearables   -contemplative construction/work-life balance

Co-Creators: -face to face community   -craftsmanship back to community  -don’t replace craft w/code   -participate in creation

                      -believe in saving art   -believe that to innovate must teach arts   -share   -hands on materials

                      uses the web as a canvas   -value in customization   -sets trends as opposed to following them

2. Create a Shopping Experience for Your Customer

The five things that matter to customers most are: fit, efficiency, joy of shopping itself, availability of items, and selection. With the failure of so many traditional brick and mortar stores and the move to online sales, every brand is attempting to master addressing the issue of getting the customer the perfect fit. Ill fitting clothes is the number one fear of online shoppers and the number one drawback of only having a store online. It’s important when building your store that you offer as much information on each item as you can. Sizing indifferent metrics, length, width, fabric, fabric properties, and high quality rich colorful photos with a 360 degree view. You want the customer to feel as if they’re in your store looking right at the product.

Online shoppers choose to shop online for convenience. So your site or app should be easy to navigate, they should be able to build a shopping profile so they can easily come back later, and it is very important that you offer reasonable and flexible return policies.

In reality, only 10 percent of the styles you carry drive 70 percent of your total sales. Those styles are what bring them to you, and those styles are what should partially drive your conversions. Keeping close track of what is bought, viewed, liked, and shared with others on social media; as well as what’s stored in the personal profiles of each customers helps to continue to stock and create only what your customers like to buy.

   3. Invest in a “Mobile”App

As soon as you can afford it, create a mobile app for your bra. When you refer to the average that only 1.4 percent of sales are online, that’s on a traditional laptop/PC/tablet. The reality is more dollars are spent on sales done within mobile transactions.  Looking at customer buying power, millenials(ages 25-45) have 2.5 trillion dollars in spending power. Aside from that, people in general, all over the world check their phones and browse an average of 150 times a day. For you that’s 250 chances for you to engage them with your brand. Although it’s a large investment, mobile marketing influences buyers, collect and tracks customer data, helps to define your conversion rates,  and builds loyalty. Use the technology to leverage your brand.

Being an entrepreneur is never easy, but it’s never too late to stop, reflect, reposition yourself, and reconvene. If your ideas are strong and your drive is never ending, there’s always next season.

zazzleposter1self love copy   Transcend The Trends, Beyond New Style Where Fashion Is Art In 3d

Diary Of A Fashion Designer: What Does Success Look Like?

Standard

Anything's possible in America... Everyday, every entrepreneur and dreamer measures the level of success they’ve achieved. We can’t help it, we’re in a constant rat race competition with ourselves to see how much of our inhumanly impossible expectations we’ve met, and we beat ourselves up for the marks that we miss. But it doesn’t have to be like that. Once you sit back and evaluate the road you’ve traveled to get where you are today, you’ll truly respect and value all the strides that you’ve made. See celebrities, and fake social media celebrities leave the impression that the materialistic gains are what determine whether or not you’re successful. But that’s not realistic, or true. Bob Marley was a global music icon and philanthropist, and he always stressed that money was never the end result of his success or the drive behind his passion. So, let’s take a look at and bust some myths to smithereens about what success should look like…

  1. Success is not about money

Don’t punch me. I hate to break it to you but success is not about money. You may be the hardest working person in your field for ten years and not see the financial gains yet. It’s not because you’re not awesome at what you do, it’s usually because it’s just not your time. You may be ahead of your time, and the world just isn’t ready for you yet. Every time I make a new collection or show some new pieces people act like my clothes are from outer space, they just don’t get it. But, like clockwork, I always see the shapes, colors, and styles I debuted  two years ago is the hot trend of the day two years later. I’ve learned it’s a confirmation that I’m just ahead of my time, I’m fashion forward. It doesn’t mean the money won’t come, it just means it’s not coming today. Unfortunately, most artists don’t gain unprecedented fame until they’re dead. But I’m not going to wait that long, and neither should you, just don’t give up when the big checks aren’t coming in. Keep going hard and creating.

      2. Your success is not based on the next person’s success

Don’t base your success on what the next person has going on, or what they’ve accomplished. No two paths to the promised land are the same. So don’t get all upset or depressed when others seem to come up and you don’t. You never know what they did or what they’ve gone through; and once again it just may not be your time yet. You can’t get caught up in trying to figure out why the next man has reached a level thet you haven’t, it takes time and energy away from what you’re trying to do AND it’s just not becoming. Focus on your own goals and ambitions and how you can utilize more of your time to achieve them.

        3. Your vision of what success looks like can change over time

What you thought success was at 18 will be different at 25, 30, 35, and 40. That’s totally normal and probable very sensible depending on what you’ve got going on. If you were on the block at 18 trying to fund your rap career, oron the pole at 21 trying to fund your dreams; you should be doing something else to make it happen 10 years later. It’s ok, you haven’t failed, or been knocked off your square. You’ve just upgraded your hustle. Where you may have strived for platinum hits, cars and cash in the past; you may now strive for more cash, companies, and investments today

      4. Sex does not equal success

This may ruffle some feathers but sex does not equal success. Now if you’re in the sex industry then it does, but in every other industry it does not. I mean, sex does sell, but only so much and only to so many. I say this because I see a lot of people exposing themselves sexually looking for some type of instant fame, not realizing it may later affect their long term dollars. Too many twerk videos, boobs, vaginas, a penises are just out here for no reason at all. These people are not even getting paid. But if likes and views were money, some of ya’ll would be rich. So, don’t act surprised if you have 700 likes on your Instagram nudie pic and no money in the bank. Andon the flip side don’t feel pressured to post something outrageous thinking it will gain some attention for your brand.

      5. Different areas of your life may never be successful all at the same time

Unfortunately every area of your life may not be all good, all at the same time. You may want it to function like a well oiled machine, but in reality it may run like a jimmy rigged old school. Pretty on the outside, but full of non-factory issued parts under the hood. But that’s ok it’s your life, your dream, your vision, your world. And you have to do what works for you. When balancing a business, a family, a relationship, sometimes even another job(or two); things can get a little hectic. You may want to consider letting some of those things go to the wayside or get pushed to the backburner. One of the first rules I learned in marketing is that when juggling multiple projects and dealing with a multi-faceted skillbase; you have to choose 1-2 in which you’ll be exceptional, and the rest you will be functional but mediocre. Because a jack of all trades is a master of none so you have to choose what to master.

So what about me? What does my success look like? Well it looks like whatever my life is right now. All I can do from this point is keep it up, and wait for the checks to come in… See you on the catwalk

Snapshot_20131007_34 Transcend The Trends, Beyond New Style Where Fashion Is Art In 3d

Diary Of A Fashion Designer: WWDMagic Seminar Series-Fashion Tales: Creating a Compelling Product and Taking It To Market

Standard

S/o to #BlaineVossler of #TheLocalBranch …#MadeInAmerica #awesome #MagicReady #fashion #urbancouturelife

A post shared by Ebony Adell (@tsx_design_house) on

  Me and Blaine Vossler @ WWDMagic 2015

nab-1.jpgMAGIC seminar series is a series of professional education seminars and panels where you, the buyer/retailer/designer/whoever you are in your supply chain, can go and get “schooled” on the latest trends and practices in the industry. The question that seemed to be on everybody’s mind that I talked to was, “How do I get money/investors to start my line or launch my brand?” Now, the four days I’m in Vegas for the show I always learn a lot. But a few key pieces of information always impact me more than others. This time around, one of the most important pieces of advice I picked up was to learn to tell my story.

What’s Your Story?

Every brand has a story, do you know how to tell yours ? Well that’s the thing, you think you know how, but ask yourself if you’re effectively telling your story to get the results you want. If investors aren’t breaking down the door to give you money then the answer is no! Barbara Ende hosted a seminar and panel entitled “Fashion Tales: Creating A Compelling Product and Taking It to Market” with guest speakers Sherry West founder of Daisy & Blue, Blaine Vossler co-founder of The Local Branch, and Jay Halistein co-founder of Brass Clothing. All three successfully have launched new brands; young companies with strong stories.

Telling your story is where it all begins, If you can’t verbally, visually, and emphatically express the personality, foundation, and history of your brand you’re screwed no matter how great your product may be. So how do you tell your story and get the money to make something happen?

1. Know the difference between storytelling and storymaking

Storytelling is just the repeating, improvisation, embellishment, or sharing of a story. You tell somebody your story, they listen and possibly repeat whatever you said to somebody else. Story making is when you create a story that the consumer wants to engage in and become a part of. They want to finish the story and make their own story based on the customer experience.

2. Crowdfunding

Use crowdfunding to raise money. Retailers speak to customers through floor displays, ads, and commercials; attempting to make an emotional connection. Written content, video, pictures, and whatever other creative elements all support the cause and assist in

Blaine Vossler shared that his company spent a full year creating their KICKSTARTER campaign before they attempted to raise money online. His story was a part of that campaign and I can attest to how compelling it was. Told through film/video, it was the story of how the brandGO F started, inspirations behind their products and reflected their pride of being Made In America.

Sherry West of Daisy&Blu chose animation as the media to tell her story. Intertwined with strategic placement. Of trademark characters and two staple products. As a mother, her story made me want to buy that soft, song soothing blanket to wrap my baby in and put him to sleep. The imagery appeals to the consumer across language barriers by using universal imagery, and draws them in.

 

3. Choose your platform carefully

All platform are created equal in the sense that you create an account, profile, launch a campaign, and try to raise the money. But you can’t just copy and paste your Facebook “About Me” section into the information section of your fundraising site.

3 well known crowdfunding sites with proven success rates are:

KICKSTARTER is the number one crowdfunding platform. However if you do not reach you full fundraising goal you forfeit the money back to the donors.

GOFUNDME and INDIEGOGO are similar Kickstarter but you get to keep all the donations you receive

 

4. Don’t be afraid to tell it all

You can’t be afraid to tell your whole story, no holds barred. Investors, customers, donors all want to know if you really have that drive, can you really deliver, where are you’re coming from, what brought you here, how you were inspired, and why they should trust you.

What’s My Story?

Ever since the seminar, I have been thinking so hard about how to tell my own story. The truth is that I ve been hesitant to really, truly open up about why and how I got to where I am today. I didn’t want to be judged, only respected for my work. But that’s not how it goes. My customer transcends trends, and loves a story when the Phoenix rises from the ashes. To commit to my brand they want to know the authentic, compelling reasons why TSX Design House deserves to be considered a luxury brand they should be loyal to. Why did I really choose the name TSX Design House? Why a focus on Tantric Sex, why chakras, why color?

To begin, TSX stands for Tantric Sex. I use the term “design house” because I’m not a certified “atelier”. chose that name because number one, as an adult entertainer selling the fantasy of sex and sensuality, I was looking for something deeper in my personal sexual relationships. After some research I decided to begin to practice and then eventually teach Tantric Sex practices. I discovered while learning the basics that clothes were considered a part of your body adornment, they reflect your aura and chakras, and body adornment is how you attract and entice your mate. In addition, the way you dress affects how people receive you………… to learn more about my story Stay Tuned for my KICKSTARTER campaign coming soon…MUAH aaaaaand scene

Follow me in TWITTER and IG@TSXDesignHouse

TSX Design House Commercial

 

 

 

Diary Of A Fashion Designer: WWDMagic 2015 The Business Of Fashion

Standard

 

WIN_20150219_123215 (6) WWDMagic is always the height of the season for fashion professionals that want to stay on top of the game. Fresh off of New York Fashion Week runways and onto the eagerly waiting eyes and ears of every facet of the retail and supply chain. Trends, projections, collections, and all the most up to date information available in the world. So what would a small fry luxury brand like TSX Design House hope to accomplish at a show this massive on a shoestring budget?

I had 5 goals this year when I attended Magic. The original plan was to walk the floor, find a manufacturer, place an order, and have my first run in production by March 1, 2015. However, finances didn’t permit things to go down like that. I had to completely re-evaluate my plan to benefit the position I was currently in. It’s important as I’m trying to pull all this together, that I don’t bust any moves that will set me back. I have to fight not only for my current position, but I also have to strategize to keep pushing forward and advancing.

5 GOALS

1. Find and meet with an American manufacturer

2. Find and meet with an American textile factory

3. Find and meet with and American shoemaker

1,2, and 3

One of the most frequently asked questions is, “Why are you sourcing an American supply chain? That’s so expensive.” The label “Made in America” is a part of my niche market. My products are created by an American company, American designer, and made in America. That speaks to the history and foundation of TSX design House and that’s what supports my claim of being a luxury brand. Yes it’s a little more expensive, but that justifies my high end price point. In addition I have to be able to go to the factories where my products are being produced and check on quality control and compliance maintenance. I’m not in a position to fly to China or India to walk the floors of factories and make sure the conditions are safe and legal.

4. Physically speak face to face with industry professionals about financing, and what do they suggest as a next step

5. High Profile Networking

4,5

The high profile networking turned out to be the conversations about the funding and the next steps I should take. The MAGIC seminar series was the opportunity to get the information and meet the heavy hitters. Getting face to face with lasers in the industry, asking questions, dropping quick ideas and receiving better feedback than you could have ever imagined. Barbara Ende, Blaine Vossler, Nadia Shouraboura, and Edward Hartman exchanged a few words with me, knowledge, and enlightenment.

If asked whether or not I feel I met my goals, I’m happy to say I accomplished all 5 things within 48 hours and I was already laying plans for the show in August. Over the next few weeks I’ll cover the seminars, consumer trends, fashion trends, social media and branding advice from the best in the business. Stay tuned……..MUAH aaand scene

 

Diary Of A Fashion Designer: Strictly Business, The #BlueOceanStrategy

Standard

Anything's possible in America...

Ive been getting alot of questions from my readers  asking “How will TSXDH compete with big name brands?” “How will you make money?” Well people, it takes some intense planning to establish any business. However, luxury branding success totally depends on which strategy you employ, and this is how I plan to break into the business

FACT: The total sales reported in the United States retail industry in 2012 exceeded 2.5trillion dollars and supported over 42 million jobs

FACT: In 2013, luxury retail sales exceeded 318 billion dollars worldwide.

Why would a company choose to establish a luxury brand?

Some people think I’m crazy for founding a luxury brand, to them it’s committing fiscal suicide. They think I’m setting myself up for failure. But in reality, luxury segmentation maximizes opportunity for expansion and profits in an uncertain economic climate by focusing on customers in a mid to high income bracket that find value in branding. Over
the next 5 years, spending has the potential to increase by 35%(www.BOF.com).
Consumer habits, social considerations, trends, and market size are important
environmental factors that contribute to a steadily expanding consumer base.

TSX Design House has implemented a blue ocean strategy. Because it’s a company that specializes in customization and “limited” collections, value innovation gives us the upper hand. This allows for a window of opportunity to stay ahead of imitators.  Competition is irrelevant because we expand industry boundaries by creating a demand for the value we provide and taking advantage of uncontested market space. We’ll thrive in a marketplace of our own making.

Why Do Customers Choose Luxury Goods?

Luxury goods leaders provide a premium shopping experience,
and high quality. This is how they survive recessions and economic downturns.
Competitive Analysis
The United States is the number one buyer of luxury goods with China close behind
in the number 2 slot (www.BOF.com) Driven by emerging markets and a trend of
“ affordable luxury” the market saw a 3% retail gain in 2013. Micheal Kors, COACH, and
Ralph Lauren are the American industry leaders; with Ralph Lauren reporting an
average 4.04 billion dollars in 2013 sales.

Ralph Lauren has maintained a steadfast position in the fashion industry by adhering to it’s design
philosophy and aesthetic focusing on classic lines/styles/silhouettes. This allows
them to survive trend cycles, and even increase their profit margin yearly. They have
global brand recognition and visibility, with a wide and expanding customer base.
These brands will only grow bigger as they expand into new luxury markets, like
Asia-Pacific and Africa.
TSX Design House is a high end American fashion brand positioning itself for
entry into the luxury goods market. The company is a custom design firm that creates
and sells custom made, limited edition, and Ready-T0-Wear high end fashion and art. We currently have one brick and mortar store in the midwest, and two online stores(http://www.
zazzle.com/tsxdesignhouse and http://www.Etsy.com/Shop/TSXDesignHouse). Our
current position in the market is good, but not ideal for entry. Lack of cashflow, is the
biggest obstacle we face at this time. 2012-2014 saw a profit of approximately
$30,000 after $12,000 in costs. However, as demand increases, costs will go up, while
profits may decrease or plateau. The company has yet to implement a strategy to
meet those challenges. Although we have established an industry presence,
brand recognition and visibility is limited.
Strategic Analysis: TSX Design House
The recommendation for TSX Design House is as follows:
To address the issue of lack of cashflow the company can solicit outside funding
from investors, or apply for business loans. They can also create additional cashflow
with minimum spending by taking advantage of their online opportunities, and using
that platform to test their branding strategy resulting in measurable results.

Since the luxury market is not saturated, the company will continue to pursue a blue ocean
strategy for entry into that market. To better position ourselves for entry we will
focus current marketing and sales efforts in the oniine zazzle store. Luxury shoppers
are motivated to purchase by brand loyalty. We have launched an aggressive targeted marketing
campaign via social media, radio, internet radio, e-mail marketing, print media, and direct mail.
It’s the most cost effective way to build brand loyalty, until we increase our marketing budget. Once the relationship is established customers will buy other products under the brand umbrella they trust.

When TSXDH gets a firm foot in the luxury market they can defend their position by offering
limited collections within the staple brand and co-brands. We’ve Implemented a balance
of a horizontal integration and differentiation strategy, and the brand is a prime candidate for repositioning at anytime. A strong product development foundation combined with a value based design philosophy is a major strength for the company. This can be used to our advantage while growing existing brands and clothing lines; while creating
co-brands.

Within five years expansion of brick and mortar locations in New York, Atlanta, Alaska,
California, Miami, Asia-Pacific, Brazil, and Africa will be possible as luxury goods
spending increases. To meet the needs of the customers, we will also expand the online business by offering online consultations via skype, virtual fittings, body scanning technology, partnerships with local tailors and in other geographic areas. There will also be an increase in in-house staff. Within the first year TSX Design House has the potential to penetrate and raise
awareness in 60% of the targeted consumer market and achieve a profit margin
of 50%.

Diary Of A Fashion Designer: 5 Tips To Maximize Your Social Media Networks

Standard

06show Whether you’re a small business, or a Fortune 500 company, social media has exploded the pool of potential customers for every business. The possibilities are endless. You now have the power to reach out and touch any market, anywhere in the world.

The secret to a successful social media marketing strategy is effectively tapping into your networks, and utilizing all your sharing tools. Here are 5 Tips To Maximize Your Social Media Network.

1. Monitor and measure your key performance indicators(KPI)

Analytics measure your brand performance online partially based on your activity, engagement, and return on investment(ROI). You can identify your audience and their preferences. Your # of Likes, # of Follows, # of Followers, viewers, subscribers, mentions, retweets, and shares. If you keep track of the results weekly, or even daily, you can tweak the time, platform, and even subject of your content to generate more activity.

2. Encourage your friends/followers to engage with you

The beauty of these social media platforms is they allow you to build personal relationships with customers in far away places. Encourage your fans/friends/followers to “Like” your posts, leave comments, share your content, and start discussions. Join groups, respond to people’s comments, “Like” their posts and updates;and share fresh, valuable information with them.

3. Break your groups and circles down into specific customer segments

Break customers down by demographics, psycho-graphics, purchase history, browse history, etc. Create specific promotions,  posts and updates for the different groups.

4. Create a contest

People love free stuff. Offer a prize for the follower that gets you the most mentions/shares/likes in 30 days.

5. Add video

The attention span of the average person is pretty short. especially with pop-up ads and full on commercials online to distract them. Aside from stunning visual media in the form of pictures, you need to add video to your updates. Keep it short, get to the point, and include a call to action. Blurbs, mini-commercials, interviews etc. all make for great video content.

A person doesn’t have to spend a dollar in order to become valuable to a business. You want to create an experience that customers want to share with their friends and family. Also, if you know somebody with a start-up, home-based business, or any kind of business at all; don’t be a hater, click the “Like” button. Stay tuned…MUAH aaand scene.

TSX Design House “Beyond New Style, Where Fashion Is Art In 3d”

follow me on TWITTER

Check out my store @ http://www.zazzle.com/tsxdesignhouse