Here are 30 different client acquisition sources you can use to promote your clothing brand and thus, increase your turnover.
Creating beautiful clothes, with style and originality, is good. Successfully selling them is better.
There are many stylists and artisans who create very beautiful things but still fail to market them and develop their brand awareness. If you are a stylist yourself and / or have your own brand, you might know something about it.
So check out these 30 client acquisition sources and try them out!
1 – Social networks
We start with the most obvious. Social networks are undoubtedly a very good way to communicate around your brand, your history and to unite a community. They can be used as much for discovery as for customer loyalt
Among the most important social networks for fashion, we note among others Instagram, Facebook but also Pinterest or Tik Tok. Other networks exist. Those to be favored then depend on the target audience.
A good content and community management strategy is important to ensure growth and visibility
2 – Social media ads
On social networks, it is also possible to advertise. They appear as “sponsored” posts. You have probably seen it happening if you surf the networks from time to time.
Instagram ads, facebook ads, pinterest ads, twitter ads… each platform has its own advertising system and its own specificities.
In general, with the right settings (or the right web marketing agency), you can really reach your target audience. It takes a bit of knowledge and practice, so if you don’t know your stuff at all, don’t hesitate to call in the specialists.
3 – SEM
SEM or even Search Engine Marketing are text ads found on search engines like Google.
These are ads that appear based on the keyword typed in the search engine bar. The main benefit to using this client acquisition source is that it responds to queries from people who are doing an intentional search. People are actively looking for a solution and if your brand responds to it, it’s a winning customer.
If you are in children’s fashion for example, it may be interesting to create ads to appear when people type in keywords such as “children’s clothing”, “baby clothing”, “birth gift”…
4 – Display or programmatic Ads
SEA stands for Search Engine Advertising. SEA are all the advertising techniques used on websites and search engines to develop visibility. This includes the SEM seen earlier, but also the use of banner displays for example on sites.
Google Shopping too, which allows a pictorial / catalog ad to be displayed in response to shopping queries is one of them.
This type of traffic source is particularly effective in increasing brand awareness.
5 – Blogs and guest blogging
Another interesting client acquisition source to exploit is guest blogging with blogs that belong to your sector. If some bloggers promote styles that are similar to yours, you can try pitching your brand to them with the goal of getting them talking to their community.
If you are in the ethical fashion industry for example, you can try contacting blogs that talk about responsible fashion to talk about your project.
6 – Influencer marketing
Just like SEA, influencer marketing can be an effective lead source for your clothing brand.
Several fashion brands have exploded thanks to this. Sézane very quickly had many influencers who spoke about the brand. Their notoriety grew very quickly thanks to this. Similarly, Off-White, the brand of Virgil Abloh, the former stylist of Kanye West, has become a flagship to overtake Gucci. Thank you Kardashians-Jenner!
In a slightly ancillary field, the watch brand, Daniel Wellington, gained fame only through influencer marketing.
You have to choose your influencers well, but in fashion, they undeniably have a key role to play.
7 – Star endorsement
Very much in line with influencer marketing, you can use stars to promote your brand or even associate yourself with it.
The reason that LVMH group luxury brand Fenty has taken off so quickly is largely because it is worn by the popular and famous Rihanna.
Not within reach of all budgets, we grant you. But if you have knowledge that is well-placed in the business and that matches your brand, don’t hesitate to call on them.
8 – SEO
SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, is about optimizing your entire website to make it friendlier for search engines.
SEO can be quite technical and time consuming. This is a long-term client acquisition source because it might take months to be well referenced for a particular keyword. However, if you do a good job with your SEO, it can bring you more and more traffic and organic notoriety, and ultimately at a lower cost.
9 – Content marketing/ inbound marketing
Content marketing not only improves SEO but also brings your brand to an audience looking for information.
Indeed, a good content strategy allows by creating relevant content to answer the questions of your target. Not only is it good for your SEO but your community will like it if you provide good content. By the way, feel free to check out our content batching guide if you need to create a lot of content.
10 – Email
An email is direct contact with a customer. It is a known, tested and a well approved methods among all the client acquisition sources. With the new privacy laws, you obviously cannot send emails without the person having first given their consent.
This is less true when it comes to a generic email from a company, for example. Also, if your brand targets businesses, emails can be a great way to market your product.
In addition, some companies, especially the media, have offers that allow partners to be highlighted in their newsletters sent to subscribers. Do not hesitate to take a look at the media kits of the media that interest you.
11 – Viral marketing
Creating buzz around your brand is a great way to promote it. Le Slip Français, for example, created an incredible buzz during the 2012 election campaign by hijacking posters of presidential candidates. “Slip’s change is now!”
In less than 6 days, their parody video had been viewed more than 40,000 times, thus doubling the number of visitors to their site.
Creating buzz and virality isn’t easy, but if you are successful you will definitely make history. Where it is to your advantage is that when you are a stylist or a fashion designer, breaking codes or being original is your core business. Also, it is absolutely within your reach.
12 – Business development
Business development is not for the fashion industry a simple lever. It is more obvious if, for example, you are selling a service.
To put it simply, business development is the art of forging strategic or even exclusive relationships with partners in order to attract customers of interest to both parties.
Example: If you offer styling services, teaming up with a pattern maker or a seamstress can be a winning relationship that earns you both revenue. Indeed, your customer may be the customer of the business with whom you are partnering.
For a B to C fashion brand, this could be a partnership with a concept store for example.
13 – Affiliation
Affiliation is a very powerful potential source of clients. This is about giving commissions to prescribers of your service based on the number of people they bring you.
Take an example with a case of affiliation with a YouTuber or a fashion advice site. They talk about your brand to their audience and refer them to you thanks to an affiliate link that you will have created to follow the results. Each 1000 people brought to your site for example, or for each customer brought, you pay them a sum or a percentage of sales defined in advance.
Much like in business development, you create a win-win relationship that can promote your clothing brand.
14 – Sales
Customers attract customers. Have you noticed that when you have a lot of customers in a store, you immediately feel a little more inclined to walk into them? It piques your curiosity and makes you want to know what attracts so many people.
This is why in some countries, such as the United States or Japan, we pay people to queue to attract others.
So making good sales, having many customers can also be a good way to get people talking about your brand and attract other customers.
15 – Word of mouth
Likewise, offering the right service and a good product to the right customer helps build brand awareness. A happy customer will be happy to talk about their experience and recommend you. There is nothing better than word of mouth to build your brand awareness.
Note, however, that this is a double-edged sword. Indeed, a happy customer will tell about your brand to 2 or 3 of their friend. On the other hand, a dissatisfied customer will be eager to tell to more than ten people about their bad experience. And with social networks, it can go very quickly!
16 – Brand collaborations
You could also do collaborations with brands that share similar values but different target audiences or have the same audiences.
That way, your fashion brand will be exposed to the other brand’s audience. And you might just gain new clients afterwards.
However, do note that it needs to work both way for a collaboration to be successful.
17 – The distribution network
Being distributed in several stores in several corners of France can allow you to promote your brand (and increase your sales!).
In some cases, boutique distribution when it comes to Galaries Lafayettes or Printemps can even turn out to be more of a communication operation than a means of making money as the constraints are so high.
But by multiplying the points of sale, you increase the chance that your brand is seen.
18 – Pop up stores
Participating in a pop-up is a way to reach out to customers and present your products. Not all pop ups are created equal and it’s important to put in place a real communication strategy around them if you don’t want to waste your time.
The choice of location and timing is also key.
19 – Creators’ markets or christmas markets
If your brand is suitable and is more artisanal, you can consider designer markets or Christmas markets to market yourself. Those who attend are often looking for new products, gift ideas and emerging designer
20 – Trade shows
If you want to make your brand known to a professional audience of buyers with the idea of selling B2B and wholesale, trade shows are a good way to introduce yourself.
In France, the Who’s next, the lingerie show and the Première Classe show are still relevant. The Impact fair and the Made in France fair are gaining notoriety. Check with your federation which ones may be of most interest to you.
Organizing a trade show is a significant investment and it requires preparation.
21 – Fashion showrooms
Joining a fashion showroom allows you to present your brand to a range of buyers. Showrooms can be interesting to study if you want to expand internationally.
22 – Commercial agents
As with showrooms, hiring a sales agent is especially relevant if you want to promote your brand abroad.
23 – Press relationships
Media relations is the whole process of getting journalists to talk about your brand organically. In fashion, many big brands have developed their notoriety through this.
This consists of creating press kits and interacting regularly with journalists in order to provide them with news about your brand. Maintaining press relations requires interpersonal skills and is very time consuming because you have to regularly renew your contacts. There also needs to be material and stories to tell, such as a launch or a fashion show.
It’s a real job, so don’t hesitate to entrust the task to a pro!
24 – Ads in magazines, online magazines or newspapers
Magazines and newspapers are largely funded by advertising. You may, in fact, decide to buy an entire page of advertising to promote your brand.
Be careful, this can quickly become expensive! ¼ of a page can quickly cost around $ 5,000 as a guide and the price depends on the audience and the style of the magazine. So, keep it for a development or a scaling period when you know you can invest.
However, if you pick the right magazine, it can help you develop or affirm your brand image. Smaller magazines also offer more attractive prices.
25 – TV ads
We mention it anyway, even though it is far from within the reach of most designers and small brands.
TV advertising still has an impact today, especially as there are audiences like seniors who have not yet fully gone digital.
26 – Product placement
Product placement is about having your piece used in a movie or series.
27 – Billboards
Billboards are a good way to build awareness if you are looking to market yourself to a local clientele. Keep in mind only passers-by and local clients will see the poster or panel.
One immediately imagines the large billboard in the metro or near the highway. However, it could very well be a small poster plastered in small signs in the neighborhood you are targeting. And if you’re in a small town, maybe it can cost less than you think.
28 – Flyers
Distributing flyers can also be a way to build awareness of your brand. This is not suitable for all levels of the range. In addition, the flyer must be really impactful and provide real added value to attract the attention of the person or risk being thrown in the first trash.
But if you have events or if you are organizing a pop-up, this can be a lever to test.
29 – Conferences
Attending conferences as a speaker can help you build awareness of your brand. There is probably no better person to talk about your product and your fashion vision than you.
Plus, it also positions you as an expert. Developing your own personal brand can also positively impact your clothing brand. If you like to talk and are comfortable in public, consider the maneuver.
30 – Podcasts
Finally, you can also approach podcasts with the aim of getting people talking about your clothing brand and / or your expertise. Podcasts are on the rise and increasingly popular these days.