Felt it would be helpful to share some do’s and don’ts on here, and there are probably a lot of them.
We’ll get there, but today we’re starting here, with some more of the obvious but important points.
- Realize your new endeavor is going to cost a bit o’cheddar. A bit o’bacon. Yes, it’s going to cost you money. What you are about to do is not cheap, and it requires you to spend a lot of money up front with a healthy stream continuously funneling into the brand even after you launch your initial product(s). You can expect each “launch” or “collection” to take anywhere from 9 months to a year for development + production, so even after you’ve spent all that money in the beginning for the initial collection, your customers will want to see something new sooner or later so you have to start on your 2nd drop pretty much as soon as you’ve finished the 1st.
- Market research. It’s the first thing any business-school will teach you. And that is because it’s 10000% right. What is so special about the product you want to create? Are you sure it doesn’t already exist? Are you sure it doesn’t already exist in about 5 different and creative ways? Really take the time to think through what will set your product apart. You cannot reinvent the wheel. A T-shirt is a T-shirt is a recycled cotton T-shirt is a recycled cotton T-shirt, etc. etc.
- Take time time to learn about the industry even if it’s just a little bit. Some basic knowledge will get you a long way, and you won’t be so frustrated when we come back to tell you that thing you wanted to make really is actually impossible because of x, y, and z. At Casual Brand Creative, we feel this is the most integral part of what we do. We help to teach and guide. We help to educate. We know we are getting a lot of people who come from different industries and we LOVE it, but we also want them to know a thing or two about what they are getting into. We take the time and care to explain the process, the ins and outs, and we try to steer expectations based on reality. We do our best to guide the way, but we can’t do all the homework for you.
- Have fun. Super simple. You’re embarking on something super cool that’s 100% your own. Enjoy yourself a little bit and buy yourself some champagne to open on launch day (and invite me to the party).
- Hire the cheapest option. I know it’s tempting to save that few hundred dollars, but please, for the love of all that is good, do it right the first time around so that you don’t have to spend more money going back to have it done again, right. If you don’t know what “right” should look like, please just ask us. We will tell you, for free, whether or not you’re doing it right. We want you to win.
- Rush. I know you’ve spent x amount of months trying to nail down that perfect fabric. Don’t settle for the one you think is a little bit too scratchy just because you want to get to the finish line. If you don’t absolutely love what you’re creating, don’t expect someone else to (and pay money for it).
- Get discouraged. Developing a clothing line is a tedious process. Even the big brands who have been around for years doing billions of dollars in sales a year feel the aches and pains of development. And guess what? Even some of their ideas don’t work and need to be scrapped & started from scratch.
- Ask us to sign NDAs. To save myself from undue carpal tunnel, read more on this here.