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Boss tips for teen stylists

You may be into trends and love the feel of new clothes on your body, but it takes much more to make a living out of fashion. Starting a clothing line in particular, requires strategy and hard work to succeed. Gurus in the fashion industry thus recommend these tips to guide you along;

Start small; You do not need millions to start your clothing line. The biggest investments you will make as you start out is in the photoshoots. You will also suffer extra costs if you intend to cast fashion models to strut your designs. You can however, choose to use an affordable photographer and scale up to more professional ones as you grow. Also, have your friends and family do the modelling for you or get a good mannequin to showcase your work.

Identify a market for your product. This is as simple as not selling sand to a desert. You can apply the same principle for your business. Find out what gap you are filling or what need you are meeting in the fashion industry, then give your all to making that solution a reality.

Know your target audience; This is not only by name, but also about their needs and spending habits. Which community are your selling your merchandise to? How much are they willing to spend? Do they prefer to shop online or demand face to face interactions.

Find the right people to work with; This will go a long way in attracting and retaining customers. If your sales and marketing person is not people oriented, then he/she is likely to put off potential clients. If your delivery person is not organised and time conscious, then he or she is likely to cost your business due to late deliveries. Find the right people and reward them accordingly.

Make marketing your best friend; No one will know what you are selling if you do not display it. Market your product as much as you can and on as many platforms as possible. Social media offers multiple platforms that you could take advantage of. You can also enlist your friends and family to help spread your gospel through their networks.

Take time to reflect on yourself and the business; This requires that you spend time alone and with the right mentors who can give you honest feedback about you and your business. What skills and lessons have you learned over the past six months? What personal goals have you set for your next level? What are your strengths and weaknesses and how are they impacting your business?

Creating value for others

You will open up career opportunities for other teenagers by focusing on your dream. Owning a successful clothing line will in the long term, require that you hire;

  • Communications Officers
  • Designers
  • Graphic Designers
  • Accounts Managers
  • Customer service managers
  • HR personnel
  • Stylists
  • Photographers
  • Store managers
  • Sales and marketing executives
Video by RODNAE Productions 

Soft Skills

Most of the soft skills you will need to succeed in the fashion industry are not taught in school. You can however, harness them as you build your brand and expand your horizons. To flourish in your clothing business, you will have to;

  1. Be creative and pay attention to detail because your customers depend on you for fresh and unique ideas.
  2. Have a good sense of business because that is where your money comes from. Where necessary, get someone to help you brush up your Business 101 skills
  3. Develop a competitive spirit because the fashion industry is very competitive. Read up on the existing players and always be in the know of the trends and finances
  4. Be a team player because you will have to work with others to see your dream come true
  5. Have strong communication and interpersonal skills because you need them to network and sell your brand.

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