While there is no one particular road to success when it comes to making it as a fashion designer, thirty-two industry experts including Miranda Almond, Fashion Editor at Vogue UK and Laura Weir, Fashion Editor at Drapers contributed their thoughts to "The Fashion Designer Guide," a free ebook edited by luxury boot designer Mark Charles. The guide includes everything from production advice to PR as is the result of 9 months of outreach via social media. Here are a few choice PR quotes, including one from me!
People love a bit of provenance, nostalgia – find out the heritage and story behind your product and tell that story. Finally make sure your branding is cohesive, never be over familiar or too bossy on the phone and don’t be sloppy. Look out for grammatical errors in emails, always have contact details on the end of press releases and never forget to pay attention to a journalist’s deadline. Get the basics right and the rest will follow. - Laura Weir, Fashion Editor, Drapers
A good fashion PR agency is proactively seeking out opportunities for you and your brand and making things happen. PR agencies can assist with brand development, photography, web presence, media relations, event management and strategic planning. Like any professional relationship, a relationship with a PR agency works best when there is mutual respect and communication. You can help your agency be more successful by moving quickly on media opportunities, providing them the assets they need and implementing their recommendations. Be sure to require tracking reports and don’t be afraid to interview multiple agencies (and their current and past clients) until you find the right fit. - Crosby Noricks, Founder & Editor, PR Couture
A new designer needs to find out if there is a gap in the market for the new product. Research can be done by conducting surveys, talking to people, scouring the Internet, visiting stores to investigate price points and competition, and new designers would benefit greatly from developing a business plan. A business plan will help put a new business into perspective as far as cash flows, staffing, competitors, short and long term goals, manufacturing, website structuring and on and on. Once a new designer has decided to move forward on a new product, they should secure intellectual property by buying every website domain iteration and secure coinciding social media: Twitter account and Facebook fan page names for instance. - Courtney Blackman, Owner/Managing Dir – Forward PR
This guide (did I mention it's free?!) is a wealth of information valuable to fashion designers as well as anyone working in fashion PR or marketing. It's particularly interested to see how editors, designers, brand strategists and PR professionals approach success.