Starting a new clothing brand is such an exciting endeavour. You get to create something new that people have never seen before, and build it from the ground up. We’ve already done a bunch of videos and blogs on different topics like marketing, design, and setting up the foundations for a new clothing brand, so this one is a little bit different. In this blog we’ll be giving you the best advice that we have that you might not get anywhere else, so without wasting any more time, let’s get into it. 

Part 1: First impressions last a lifetime

Your first impression really matters. Whether it’s meeting someone, going for a job interview or selling a garment, first impressions last. So when starting out a clothing brand, you need to think of how you want your brand to be perceived 5 years from now and aim for that from the very first sale.

It can be easy to think “Oh, I’ll just do the first run on these super cheap shirts and when I start making more money I’ll up the quality” but that would be a grave mistake. If you establish yourself as a brand that uses lower quality shirts, that’s the type of brand you will remain in people’s minds.

Therefore, you need to determine the level of quality and price from the very first garment, and stick to it so your customers expectations will be met with every future purchase. This is how you will build a lasting clientele.

Part 2: Don’t undersell yourself

I joined a group of working photographers a while back and an interesting discussion came up which was “Should I do work for free or very cheap to build up a customer base and then up my prices?” and all of the successful photographers agreed that that is the worst thing you can do. All of them said that the clients they did that for would immediately find someone else if they told them they were charging more now.

Think about it, if you got something for free or very cheap for a while, you wouldn’t start paying double or triple the price for the same thing, right? It’s a simple concept, but it’s one that can easily be overshadowed by the mentality of “I need to make sales!”. 

If you put years of experience and work into design, planning, sourcing and execution, that is worth money. If you sell your shirts for practically the price that it costs to make them, you’re giving all of this away for free, and those same customers won’t be willing to pay more when you up the prices.

You need to value yourself and all the work you put into the garments you make and then sell them for a price that makes sense. People won’t value your work if you don’t value it yourself, so don’t undersell yourself.

Part 3: Start small

A journey of a thousand miles starts with one step. So I would say the journey of an international clothing brand starts with one shirt. We’ve seen it so many times where a new brand would come in and make stock of about 20 different designs, spending all the money they have, and then slowly fizzle out. 

The successful ones that we’ve seen have all had one thing in common, and that’s that they started with a single design and then expanded based on the success (or failure) of that. The feedback and response that you get from your first garment should be what informs you of what to do in the future, not assumption. 

Same goes for stock, it can be so easy to confidently think “I can sell 50 shirts”, then spend all of your savings on making 50 shirts, and then they don’t sell and you’re stuck with the stock. If you have to make inventory, start small, or use a different approach and go for the Print On Demand model.

This wasn’t always an option, but with In.It Dropship you can now start a clothing brand that will never go out of stock, without paying for stock! 

In summary, when starting out you should focus on making a first impression that will leave a lasting impact, don’t undersell yourself and trust that people will pay for something if it’s really good, and start out small. No one’s going to say “Oh, I really like that shirt but I won’t buy it because they don’t have 10 other options”. If they like the shirt, they’ll buy it. You can always release more in the future.

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